Women and Children’s Access to the Formal Justice System in Vanuatu

UN Women Fiji

In 2009, the Vanuatu Women’s Centre (VWC) in partnership with the Vanuatu National Statistics Office (VNSO) completed the first Vanuatu National Survey on Women’s Lives and Family Relationships.

This survey found alarmingly high rates of violence against women and girls in Vanuatu:

  • “60 per cent of women in a relationship experienced physical and/or sexual violence by their husband/partner in their lifetime, and 44% suffered from either or both of these forms of violence in the last 12 months.”
  • “The prevalence of sexual violence against girls under the age of 15 is one of the very highest in the world. Almost 1 in 3 women (30 per cent) were sexually abused before the age of 15 years.”

Seven years after this ground breaking study, UN Women commissioned research into Women and Children’s Access to the Formal Justice System in Vanuatu.

This Report analyses why an estimated 98 per cent of cases of violence against women and children do not reach the stage of being charged by the police, let alone prosecuted by the courts.

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Bibliographic information

Geographic coverage: Vanuatu
Publication year
Number of pages