At least one woman is physically injured every hour on average at the hands of their partner in Germany, while one woman dies every three days at the hands of an ex-partner, shocking figures released by the Federal Criminal Police Office to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against women have revealed.
Moreover, while willingness to report incidents of abuse has risen, there are still unreported cases, suggest the total number of victims and survivors of domestic violence is even higher. Typically, offences recorded by German police range from bodily harm to murder and manslaughter.
"Every day an attempt takes place, every third day the attempt is actually carried out. [The figures] show far too many women continue to be subjected to violence by her partner or ex-partner. More than once an hour, a woman was dangerously injured in 2018. We must ensure violence against women is recognized as early as possible and that women are helped as quickly as possible. Violence against women concerns us all,” German Family Minister Franziska Giffey said.
— United Nations (@UN) November 24, 2019
The SPD politician went on to state women affected by domestic violence should be entitled to access women's shelters, but there aren’t enough spots available for those seeking refuge. As a result, the federal government will spend €30 million each year over the next four years toward increasing the capacity of shelters, of which there are currently only 350 women's shelters in Germany.
The proportion of women affected per the population is over 81 percent, while some 26,000 men were threatened, coerced or attacked by their partners or ex-partners in 2018. A website has been set up to provide information to victims as part of a nationwide initiative.
At the moment, however, centres are overcrowded and there are not enough spaces. Giffey said there were gaps in rural areas as well as big cities and the government wanted to address these problems.
— Courtney Tenz (@courtneytenz) November 25, 2019
By comparison, in Italy 142 women were killed through domestic violence in 2018, 0.7 percent on 2017, with 538,000 women being the victims of physical or sexual abuse by their partners in the last five years. The French government has also unveiled new measures to tackle domestic violence, including a pledge to seize firerarms from abusive spouses, create 1,000 new women's shelters, and improve police training at a cost of millions.
At least 130 women have been killed by their current or former partners in France across 2019 alone, and the country's rate of deadly violence against women is among Europe's highest, which President Emmanuel Macron has called "France's shame".