Huong Dang-Vu et Thomas Le Jeannic
The Insee survey on Living Environment and Security (Cadre de Vie et Sécurité: CVS) enables us to measure different types of personal assault, from insults and theft to physical and sexual assault, in the household or outside it. Women are more subject than men to domestic sexual and physical violence. They are also more likely to feel insecure. They often personally know their attacker, who may actually be her spouse or ex-spouse. This closeness of the victim and her assailant entails a repetition of violent assaults and a low propensity of the woman who endures them to file complaints. Young women living alone or as single mothers are the prime target of most types of assault. Women with a high socio-cultural level often suffer less severe assaults (theft, insults, groping). Women from modest backgrounds are more likely to endure sexual assault or family violence. Although less prone to abuse, older women are more dissatisfied than others with police presence and effectiveness. This dissatisfaction is also recorded in low-income or troubled districts. The climate of the neighbourhood (including vandalism and illegal behaviour witnessed by survey respondents) is a more powerful determinant than the frequency of attacks on women.