Crime & Violence

Crime is a gendered arena. Women criminals are still rare, although more common than before in Norway. Nearly 10 per cent of the male population in Norway above the age of criminal responsibility was registered for one offence or more in 2012. The corresponding proportion for women was somewhat more than 3 per cent. Most of them, particularly the women, have committed less serious offences. Women also receive fewer prison sentences.

Using violence is a crime in Norway. Gender based violence encompasses a wide range of human rights violations, including sexual abuse, rape, domestic violence, sexual assault and harassment, the trafficking and prostitution of women and children as well as several harmful traditional practices.

Mostly women are victims of gender based violence. During 2018, a total of 3509 cases of ill-treatment in family relations were reported. 64 percent of the victims of domestic violence, including the servere domestic violence, were women. And 80 percent of the victims of sexual crime were women. A total of 8374 sexual offences were reported to the police in 2018; 5 per cent more than the previous year.

In Norway, the women’s movement and researchers have together played an active role in placing the issue on the socio-political agenda. And gender based violence has gradually gained recognition as a serious societal problem and a matter of concern for the State. Gender based violence both reflects and reinforces inequalities between men and women. It compromises the health, dignity, security and autonomy of its victims. Male violence against women and children is now acknowledged as a hindrance for achieving gender equality in Norway. Currently, gender based violence in relation to ethnicity, sexual orientation, age, and disabilities are being focused upon.

The Norwegian Government is developing and designing measures to eliminate and prevent gender based violence. Several plans of action have been developed. In implementing a holistic, co-ordinated and integrated approach to the work against gender based violence, attention needs to be paid to the perpetrators.

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Latest statistics on sanctions
Latest statistics on victims of offences reported to the police