Violence is the biggest problem women face in Turkey: Poll

Violence is the biggest problem women face in Turkey: Poll

Violence is the biggest problem women face in Turkey: Poll

Violence is by far the biggest problem that people think women face in Turkish society in 2018, according to a poll conducted by Istanbul’s Kadir Has University.

Some 61 percent of people believe that “violence” is the most important problem women face in society, according to the poll conducted by the university’s Gender and Women’s Studies Research Center.

In the last year’s poll, the rate was 55 percent.

Respondents also voiced their demand from policymakers to develop policies to fight violence against women across Turkey.

Recently, the Kadın Cinayetlerini Durduracağız Platformu (We Will Stop Femicides Platform), a women’s rights organization that monitors violence against women, announced that some 47 women were killed in February in Turkey, marking one of the highest femicide figures in recent months.

Throughout 2017, a total of 409 women were killed and 387 children were sexually abused in Turkey, according to data compiled by the same group.

The Kadir Has University poll on the perception of gender and women in Turkey was conducted in February in 23 provinces across the country with 1,205 people, including women and men.

“Unemployment” and “lack of education” follows “violence,” with 9 percent of all respondents believing that both constitute major problems.

In last year’s poll, 11 percent of respondents said they believed that unemployment was one of the biggest problems women face in Turkey, while 10 percent said they saw lack of education as a major problem.

Street harassment, parental pressure and gender inequality are also listed among the biggest problems that women face in Turkey.

Some 72 percent of respondents said they believe that domestic violence is a valid reason for divorce.

28 percent of women in labor force, 46 percent have never worked

The poll also touched upon the presence of women in Turkey’s labor force. Some 28 percent of female respondents said they are actively work, 35 percent said they used to work in the past, and 46 percent said they have never worked before.

Some 84 percent of female respondents and 73 percent of male respondents said they agree with the statement that “women’s participation in labor force is essential for the country’s wealth.”

Women say no to muftis registering marriages

Meanwhile, some 64 percent of women and 49 percent of men said muftis - religious officials from the Directorate of Religious Affairs (Diyanet) - should not be able to perform and register marriages.

A draft law allowing muftis to perform and register marriages and was submitted to parliament in July 2017, drawing strong criticism from opposition parties and women’s rights groups.

Perception of gender equality reinforced

The poll also found that both men and women said they believe they should have equal rights and opportunities in the public sphere and their private lives.

However, the poll noted that these attitudes are mainly limited to women’s rights and opportunities in the public sphere and not reflected in their private life, especially when it comes to childcare, abortion, cohabitation and household chores.