Violence can strike any person, at any age. It stops at no place in the world and at hardly any position. It can occur in the private sphere or at the workplace – or it can strike arbitrarily ... because you’re part of a marginalized group and therefore face discrimination and violence or simply because you were in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Violence has many faces. One can distinguish between physical, psychological, economic, sexual and online violence and sexual harassment. It may show in the language chosen, in comments and remarks, in jokes, non-verbal implications or in open confrontation. Violence occurs in personal contact, through structural inequality and is becoming increasingly present online.
Many victims do not (yet) make use of the possibility to getting help from contact points or counseling at the University of Mannheim. Together we can break the silence, raise the issue of violence and draw attention to support services.
The University of Mannheim wants all members of the university to treat each other with respect and appreciation. Therefore, the Code of Conduct of the University of Mannheim governs interaction and cooperation at the university.
Various terms are used to describe different harmful forms of harassment, bullying, defamation, coercion and slander of people in digital ways over the Internet and via smartphones. The assumption of another person's identity in order to act on their behalf represents a further danger.
Surveys and studies provide background information on digital harassment, including in popular social networks. It is particularly important to become active early on as a victim of cyber violence, to inform yourself about the various options for action and to make use of them.
In Baden-Württemberg, the Demokratiezentrum Baden-Württemberg offers the opportunity to take action against online hate comments via the respect! hotline. Anti-democratic and anti-Semitic incidents can also be reported.
nachtsam exists at the University of Mannheim as well. It is a campaign of the Ministry of Social Affairs, Health and Integration for more safety in nightlife.
The conference of equal opportunities commissioners at universities and academic institutions LaKoG has launched the campaign „Zieh einen Schlussstrich“ (“Draw a line”) against sexualized discrimination and violence at universities in Baden-Württemberg.
In her videopresentation, Tanja Kramper, managing director of the local crime prevention association Kommunale Kriminalprävention Rhein-Neckar e.V., informs you about the most important facts about violence in the region and provide tips on dealing with dangerous situations.
In order to be able to react correctly in emergencies, it is important to keep the relevant steps in mind. For protection in the event of an acute threat, call the police at 110. They also offer clear and concise information for victims on various topics and inform you about the most important emergency measures.
Empathic support is of enormous value to victims of violence. An assault represents a massive loss of control for the persons affected. Reactions and needs can vary greatly. Therefore, it is important in the contact to ask for and respect the individual concern of desired support of the affected person. This concerns both the conversation with context, content and duration, as well as potential further actions.
Listening actively and without judgment, believing the person concerned and not deciding anything over his or her head are good foundations for much of what follows. In the process, also take good care of yourself and seek support from confidential professional counseling centers in order to be able to deal with the situation for yourself.
The following aspects are important for the beginning:
Sexualized violence / KO Drops:
Residential Violence / Body Injury:
Please note that the above-mentioned webpages are only available in German
The NO STALK app developed and provided by Weisser Ring, a charitable organization for the support of victims of crime and for the prevention of crimes, helps to document incidents of stalking via photo, video, and voice recordings with the smartphone.
Especially for violence against women, data and specialised help structures are well informed and in place. Locations such as deserted parking garages, poorly lit streets or parks may well become places of assault and rape. However, people from the social proximity (e.g. relatives, partners, friends, colleagues, etc.) pose a greater threat to women: according to the Gewalt gegen Frauen (Violence against women) study conducted in 2004 by the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth (Bundesministeriums für Familie, Senioren, Frauen und Jugend), every fourth woman experiences violence in her relationship, i.e. by her partner.
Violence against women in figures:
However, recent studies show that people who are part of a marginalized group are at the greatest risk for experiencing violence, such as non-binary and trans* people, people with disabilities or chronic illnesses, people who are part of an ethnic minority, and people who are part of the LGBTQIA+ community. Unfortunately, the data pool in these areas is not as big as for women.
The following large studies provide scientific evidence around violence and safety:
Conducted by the Federal Criminal Office and the police forces of the federal states:
The study Umgang mit sexueller Belästigung am Arbeitsplatz (Dealing with sexual harassment at the workplace) shows that over an individual’s entire working life, approximately one in four to five women and one in twelve to fourteen men experiences sexual harassment in the workplace context.
In 2012, the Lesbian Counselling Centre Berlin and LesMigraS conducted a quantitative and qualitative study on violence against lesbian and bisexual women as well as transgender or transsexual people in Germany, who are particularly likely to be affected by discrimination (only available in German). The results are supported by an analysis of the Federal Antidiscrimination Agency (Antidiskriminierungsstelle) on the experience of discrimination in Germany based on sexual identity (2017) that used both quantitative and qualitative data.
Trans people are particularly often affected by sexual discrimination and violence.
In 2014, the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) conducted a Europe-wide study on experiences of physical, sexual, and psychological violence against women.
In general, it can be seen that violence against women is widespread in the EU and that Germany ranks in the medium to high range in comparison with other countries. 24% of the women surveyed in Germany stated that they had suffered stalking since the age of 15. 60% of the participants in the survey have experienced at least one form of sexual harassment.
Two representative studies by theFederal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth (Bundesministeriums für Familie, Senioren, Frauen und Jugend, BMFSFJ) provide a general insight into the issue of violence against women in Germany (2004) and specifically the life situation and stresses and strains of women with impairments and disabilities in Germany (2011).
Selected results from the 2004 survey:
A first major German study on the period of the lockdown conducted by the Technical University of Munich and published in early June 2020 shows:
The results of a study conducted by the Technical University of Munich conducted in June 2020 show that the available offers of assistance during the coronavirus lockdown were only sparsely used:
Plan International survey on digital violence:
In the State of the World's Girls Report 2020 concerning online harassment from Plan International, 14,000 young women and girls from 22 countries were surveyed:
Survey by Amnesty International 2017:
Already at the end of 2017, the human rights organization looked at women's experiences of digital violence and harassment on the Internet and social media platforms. Of the representatively selected 500 women between the ages of 18 and 55 from the USA, New Zealand, Great Britain, Sweden, Denmark, Italy, Spain and Poland stated:
Cybermobbing and Cybergrooming:
Two studies among young people on unreported cases of cyberbullying and cybergrooming conducted in 2011 by the Institute for Interdisciplinary Research on Conflict and Violence (Institut für interdisziplinäre Konflikt- und Gewaltforschung, IKG) Bielefeld on the one hand and as part of the Forsa survey “Cybermobbing – Gewalt unter Jugendlichen“ (Cyberbullying – Violence among Young People) on the other hand revealed different prevalence rates of victim and witness statements. This can be attributed to the fact that the Forsa survey examined the lifetime prevalence of cyberbullying, whereas the IKG study determined a three-month prevalence.