New Methodology for U.S. Government Count of Gender Crimes
Monday, December 22, 2008 1:51 PM

The U.S. Department of Justice has revised its methodology for tracking victims of violent crimes in order to better represent gender-based crimes. The tracking system used in the latest crime report includes personal interviewing, interviewing in rural areas, and new methods of sampling. The 2007 Bureau of Justice’s Statistics Crime Victimization Survey showed an increase by 42 percent in domestic violence and 25 percent in rape and sexual violence, mostly because of the new data tracking. Before the new research techniques were implemented, information was generally gathered through police reports and telephone interviews, which advocates believe underreported incidents of domestic and sexual violence.

The non-profit Human Rights Watch released several recommendations regarding the report’s findings.  Among them are: appointing a U.S. special advisor on violence against women; funding the Office on Violence Against Women in full; conducting more thorough crime studies; and ratifying the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).

Compiled from: Anghelescu, Iulia, Feds Count Gender Crimes, WeNews, 20 December 2008; Violent Crime Rate in 2007 at about the Same Level in 2005, Press Release, Bureau of Justice Statistics, 17 December 2008; US: Soaring Rates of Rape and Violence Against Women, Human Rights Watch, 18 December 2008.