The United States is considered one of the world’s most dangerous countries for women. A new poll ranks it 10th; only two countries behind the war-torn Democratic Republic of the Congo. The poll, conducted by the Thompson Reuters Foundation, also ranked the U.S. third on the issue of sexual violence and sixth on the issue of non-sexual violence.
About 1 in 6 women in the U.S., have been a victim of an attempted rape or has been raped in her lifetime and 1 in 3 women have been victims of physical violence by an intimate partner.
One in three women around the world will experience physical or sexual violence in her lifetime.
About 550 experts were surveyed for this poll and were asked to rank countries based on women’s access to health care, discrimination and the realities of sexual abuse.
Also included on this list are the completely destabilized Yemen, Syria, Somalia, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. Afghanistan was ranked as the second most dangerous country for women while India was polled as the number one most dangerous country for women, due to its sexual violence against women, sexual harassment, as well as its cultural and tribal practices that lead women to sexual slavery and forced labor.
The Realist Woman’s take:
This list is horrific. As an avid news reader and as someone who is particularly interested in learning about the challenges women face in this world, this news shouldn’t surprise me, but ultimately it does. My heart is broken over the fact that women face daily threats to their lives and that not enough is being done to protect them from this violent and patriarchal world.
As a U.S. citizen, I am disappointed and wouldn’t have guessed in a million years that my country would round out this kind of a list. On the other hand, to research the statistics on the violence women face in this country, to know first hand the discrimination women face in their daily lives, and to come to terms with the fact that there is a lack of access to health care for women, in turn endangering their lives, makes this news story all the less shocking. And to top it all off, the only access to any kind of care for women comes in the form of women’s clinics and Planned Parenthood, which are constantly being vilified and threatened. Our current administration’s priorities include controlling women’s bodies and choices over women’s healthcare.
Lastly, It’s worth noting that many of the countries listed in this poll have major problems because of America’s direct involvement or indirect, i.e. financial involvement in many of their conflicts. So not only are we responsible for endangering our own women, but we are just as responsible for endangering women’s lives in other countries all around the world.