One in six female students sexually assaulted
Melbourne: The apex body for students in Australia has released a survey, according to which one in every six female students have been sexually assaulted.
Australian universities have now promised to redouble efforts to improve women`s safety in light of the survey.
The survey found 67 per cent women had experienced unwanted sexual encounters and only 3 per cent had reported them to their universities.
Only 2 per cent reported incidents to the police.
NUS spokeswoman Courtney Sloane said the findings are unacceptable.
"The results confirm what student organisations had been hearing anecdotally for years: that violence against women is happening at unacceptably high rates," she said.
The level of violence against women outlined in these results is unacceptable in this day and age.
Eighty-six per cent of women surveyed had experienced sexual harassment in the form of someone making sexual noises or comments.
More than three quarters said they felt unsafe after dark, while one in six said they had experienced stalker-like or obsessive behaviour.
Sloane said she was optimistic about the future of campus-based anti-violence initiatives.
"Now that we have a clear picture of the issues and a framework for addressing them, I am hopeful this blueprint will begin a process that will see universities and students working together to end violence against women at their institutions," she said.
The NUS is calling for better surveillance, staff training and awareness campaigns.
Universities Australia spokesman Glenn Withers said reform requires "millions of dollars" in government funding.