Department of Family and Community Services

2.5 Safety walking alone in local area after dark

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Women’s and men’s sense of safety walking alone in local area after dark
Current position

In NSW in 2010, 32 percent of women felt safe or very safe walking in their local area after dark, compared to 68 percent of men.

25 percent of women in NSW felt unsafe or very unsafe walking in their local area after dark, compared to 10 percent of men.

Gender gap

  • Women are 36 percentage points less likely than men to feel safe walking in their local area after dark, and 15 percentage points more likely to feel unsafe than men.
The direction of
change over time
Data for NSW from previous years is not readily available.
Discussion

Place of residence

Women who live in Sydney are much less likely to feel safe walking in their local area after dark than women in the rest of NSW (29 percent compared to 43 percent). By contrast, men’s feeling of safety on this indicator barely changes between Sydney and the rest of NSW (68 and 69 percent respectively).

Household income quintiles

Women’s feelings of safety walking in their local area after dark rises as their household income increases. Women in the highest income quintile are twice as likely to feel safe as women in the lowest income quintile (46 percent compared to 23 percent). This gap is not as marked for men, where those in the highest income group were 1.6 times more likely to feel safe than those in the lowest income group (83 percent compared to 52 percent).

Country of birth

Women born in Australia have a greater sense of safety walking alone in their local area after dark (35 percent) than women born elsewhere. The same is true for men. Women born in Australia are twice as likely to feel safe on this indicator as women born in other countries who are not proficient in English (35 percent compared to 17 percent). See Figure 6.5.

 

 

The ABS General Social Survey collected information about personal and household characteristics for people aged 18 years and over resident in private dwellings throughout Australia (except very remote areas), from August to November 2010.

Year collected: 2010.
Data source: ABS (2011) General Social Survey, Cat no. 4159.0 (unpublished data). More information is available at www.abs.gov.au

Figure 6.5 Safety walking alone after dark, by sex and country of birth, NSW, 2010

Fig 6.5

Note: Data refers to women and men who feel safe or very safe walking alone in their local area after dark. ‘Main English-speaking countries’ are United Kingdom, Republic of Ireland, United States of America, Canada, New Zealand and South Africa. Proficiency in English relates to spoken English only.
Population: People in NSW aged 18 years and over.
Source: ABS (2011) General Social Survey, Cat no. 4159.0 (unpublished data).