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Violence Vict. 2012;27(4):592-608.

Prevalence and characteristics of sexual violence in the Netherlands, the risk of revictimization and pregnancy: results from a national population survey.

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  • 1Rutgers, The Dutch Expert Centre on Sexuality, Utrecht, The Netherlands..


Prevalence figures on sexual violence among a representative sample of both men and women were not yet available for the Netherlands. The aim of this study, therefore, was to investigate the prevalence of sexual violence in the Netherlands and to add these figures to the international body of knowledge. Experiences of sexual violence during lifetime, before the age of 16 and in the year before the start of the study were measured. In addition, types of sexual violence were examined, as were the characteristics of the perpetrators. Lastly, revictimization and pregnancy as a result of rape experiences among the victims were investigated. Data were generated from a population survey on sexual health. The sample consisted of more than 6,000 men and women between the age of 15 and 70 years old. Prevalence rates as high as 21% for men and 56% for women were found. Fifty percent of the female victims and 30% of the male victims of child sexual abuse had experienced adult victimization. Of the female rape victims, 7% became pregnant as a consequence of rape. In the Netherlands, as elsewhere, the prevention of sexual violence should be prioritized.

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