General Article Britons increasingly scared to speak out on women’s rights, data shows

Topic Selected: Gender Equality Book Volume: 432

The share of the public who feel this way has doubled in five years.

People in Britain are increasingly afraid of promoting women’s rights for fear of reprisals, a major 32-country survey conducted for International Women’s Day has found.

The share of the British public who say they are scared to speak out and advocate for the equal rights of women because of what might happen to them has doubled since 2017, rising from 14% to 29%. The majority, though, continue to say this does not apply to them (71%).

International Women’s Day 2023 survey

This growing sense of fear is in line with the direction of travel elsewhere in the world: across all the countries included in the study, an average of 37% now say they are afraid to speak out – and looking across 22 nations for which trends are available, the proportion who say this applies to them has risen from 24% to 33% since 2017.

The research, by Ipsos UK and the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership at King’s College London, finds that...

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