Family Abuse in 30 Percent of Chinese Families

April 24, 2009 1:06 am Last Updated: April 25, 2009 8:05 am

A survey by the China Women's Federation shows that among 270 million Chinese families, about 81 million suffer from different degrees of family violence. One hundred thousand families break up because of family violence every year. Some experts and activists have called for anti-family violence legislation.

90 Percent of Victims are Females

According to a mainland media report on April 21 reported by the Voice of America, Chen Min, a researcher at the Chinese Institute of Science and Law, recently said in a seminar that an investigation has shown the rate of family violence in China is between 29.7 to 35.7 percent, and 90 percent of victims are females.

An Internet survey on family violence conducted by NetEase blog and Netease Woman involving 50,000 people voting showed that forty percent have experienced physical abuse, 24 percent have suffered mental abuse, 24 percent have suffered tacit abuse, 10 percent have suffered sexual abuse, and 10 percent have suffered economic abuse.

Family Violence Very Common

Gou Jianmei, director of Woman Law Research and Service Center in the Law College of Beijing University, said, “China’s family violence is mainly violent acts. It occurs often in daily life, such as beating, scolding, and sexual abuse.

“Moreover, there’s also psychological abuse. Although psychological abuse is common in China at present, it has not yet been identified as family violence. This issue has been controversial.”

No Effective Legislation

Zhou Litai, a lawyer in Chongqing City, has dealt with many cases of family violence. Zhou said, “After women are abused at home, they report to the police or related departments to find a solution. However, the judiciary system always regards it as a family dispute. So they do not protect women with the criminal law. These abuses are often the cause of divorce. The inequality of women at home leads to family conflicts, which finally lead to criminal cases.”

The director of anti-family violence network in the China Law Society, Hou Zhiming said, “At present, we don’t have a complete law on family violence. However, every year, we submit proposals to the National People's Congress (NPC) and the Standing Committee of the National Committee of the CPPCC. Now some provinces and cities have local regulations. Some places have legislations in relation to family violence.”

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