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Women harassed twice as often as men

Australian women are twice as likely to experience sexual harassment in their lifetime than men, statistics show.

But the frequency of sexual harassment for both men and women is also on the rise.

New data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows more than half of Australian women and a quarter of men over 18 have experienced at least one incident of sexual harassment.

The most common sexual harassment experienced by women was inappropriate comments about their body or sex life, followed by unwanted touching.

For men, unwanted touching was the most common sexual harassment behaviour.

The analysis found women and men who had experienced sexual harassment in their lifetime were also more likely to have experienced sexual assault.

Women aged 18 to 24 were more likely to experience sexual harassment.

The likelihood of sexual harassment increased for women if they were unmarried, lived with a disability or experienced financial stress.

The data was collected as part of a series exploring the prevalence and characteristics of sexual violence in Australia.

The final article in the series on perpetrators of sexual assault is due to be released in early 2022.

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