Released today, the third annual New Zealand Crime and Victims Survey (NZCVS), looks at experiences of victims of crime. 7425 people over the age of 15 were personally interviewed.

Key findings include: 

Sexually diverse people and females are more likely to experience sexual assault.

  • On average, two percent of people experienced sexual assault in the past 12 months- almost 1 in 50 adults.
  • Nine percent of sexually diverse people experienced sexual assault, making them most at risk for this type of offence.
  • Females aged 15-19 were the next most likely group to be sexually assaulted. Six percent had experienced sexual assault in the last 12 months, according to the survey. 

Māori are victimised more than any other ethnic group.

  • 35 percent of Māori are victimised each year across all offences - more than any other ethnic group. The New Zealand average is 29 per cent. 
  • Māori aged 15-49 are significantly more likely to experience crime.
  • Analysis suggests the high victimisation rate is linked to demographic and socioeconomic factors. Māori are generally younger and live in more deprived areas. 

Disabled adults aged 15-29 are twice as likely to be victimised across all offences

  • The risk of interpersonal violence for adults with disability is twice as high as the New Zealand average in some age groups
  • 50 percent of people with disabilities aged 15-29 are more likely to be victimised across all offences - almost twice the New Zealand average of 30 per cent.

Overall, the data covers a range of personal offences including theft, cybercrime, sexual assault and harrasment. It also covers property damage, trespass and burglary. Notably, only 25 percent of crime is believed to be reported to police. 

Ministry of Justice chief executive and secretary for justice Andrew Kibblewhite said while the survey would help police, it also had limitations. 

“A survey like this cannot reflect the true effects of these experiences,” he said in the survey report.

“We need to ensure that we all honour those experiences by making use of the evidence collected here to monitor and improve the justice system and enhance the wellbeing of all New Zealanders.”

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