The Australian Bureau of Statistics' Personal safety survey was conducted from August to December 2005, surveying a sample of approximately 16,400 women and men aged 18 years and over. The questionnaire focused on men's and women's self-reported experience of physical and sexual violence. Males were more likely to report being victims of physical assault and females were more likely to report being victims of sexual assault. The chart below shows the percentage of males and females aged 18 plus who experienced physical or sexual assault in the previous 12 months, and those experiencing the offences since the age of 15 years. Twice as many males (6.5%) as females (3.1%) reported experiencing physical assault in the past 12 months, while the opposite was the case for sexual assault, with twice as many females (1.3%) as males (0.6%) reporting being a victim. Predictably, lifetime rates of physical and sexual assault were higher. Since the age of 15 years, 40.5 percent of men and 29.2 percent of women reported that they had experienced physical assault while 4.8 percent of men and 16.8 percent of women reported that they had experienced sexual assault in that time.
Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics 2006. Personal safety survey 2005. ABS cat. no. 4906.0. Canberra: Australian Bureau of Statistics.