The ongoing male violence issue in the UK

aIn the past few weeks alone, former PC David Carrick has pleaded guilty to 49 sexual offences; there has been a suspected murder-homicide of a headmistress and her daughter by her husband, a Scottish man was found guilty of killing and burying a mother and daughter under his kitchen floor. 

The effect of these crimes has rippled through the nation and left many asking why.

  • In the year ending in March 2020, 92% of defendants in domestic abuse-related prosecutions were male, and 77% of victims were female. 
  • 93% of killers in England and Wales are men.
  • 98% of adults prosecuted for sexual offences are men.
  • Men commit more than 80% of violent crimes.
  • Every three days, a man in the UK kills a woman.

There is an undeniable male violence issue. Some say this is down to a culture of toxic masculinity, the patriarchy or the lack of a safe space to talk about mental health for men.

Undoubtedly there are contributing factors. However, this does not excuse the pattern of behaviour. Despite this, I don’t see how this concept could fade the line between moral right and wrong.

As a society, we need to draw the line and say enough is enough. Male violence is not inevitable and not something we need to adjust to. It must be stopped at the root.

Two years ago, Sarah Everard’s rape and murder sent a shock wave through the nation, triggering an uproar fuelled by frustration. The response to this was #NotAllMen, which became trending on Twitter. This diverted attention away from the issue but ultimately stimulated women’s frustration.

As a woman, we know it is ‘not all men’. But we don’t know which men. We don’t know if it is one of the over 800 met police officers now being investigated following David Carrick’s case, or our friends, or a random person on the street – like Sabina Nessa’s case. For change to start, we as a collective need to be willing to make the change, admit there is an issue and hold people accountable.

Violence against women is not a decreasing issue; in the year ending march 2022, the highest number of rapes was recorded – 70,330. For specifically female victims, we must tear down the false idea that so many of these allegations are lies.

This mindset only scares victims, frightens them into silence, and places the perpetrator on a pedestal of innocence.

It is estimated that only 8-10% of women report their rape. With this data, it is estimated that only 0.5% of allegations are false. We must stop fearmongering victims.

These statistics do not eradicate male victims. While data shows that most perpetrators are men, they are also most likely to be victims of certain crimes.

  • In the year ending March 2021, 70% of homicide victims in the UK were male. 
  • 3.3% of men fall victim to personal crime, compared to 2.9% of females. 
  • Men are also more likely to be victims of violent crimes, 2.2% of men compared with 1.6% of women. Though ONS states this statistic likely underestimates the number of female victims.

Male violence affects the nation regardless of gender. It is time for a permanent change to be made. 

We must, as a collective, acknowledge male dominance, male privilege and toxic masculinity and attempt to dismantle this among our peers. 

Challenge those around you when certain ‘jokes’ are made; they only lead to the trivialisation of the issue.

Provide a better education for children and easily influenced teenagers.

Challenge traditional images of ‘manhood’.

Stop supporting the notion that men’s violence against women is due to mental illness, lack of anger management skills, chemical dependency, and stress. Violence against women is rooted in the historical oppression of women and the outgrowth of the socialisation of men.

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