Femicide is generally defined as the murder of women because they are women, though some definitions include any murders of women or girls.
Femicide has been identified globally as a leading a cause of premature death for women, yet there is limited research on the issue in Europe.
The latest Femicide Census report, published in December 2017, reveals that 113 women were killed by men in England, Wales and Northern Ireland in 2016. Nine in ten women killed that year were killed by someone they knew, 78 women were killed by their current or former intimate partner and 65 of those were killed in their own home or the home they shared with the perpetrator.
By collating these femicides together in one report, we can see that these killings are not isolated incidents; too many of them follow a similar pattern of male violence against women. Many were committed in similar settings (at the victim’s home or home they shared with the perpetrator), similar weapons were used (sharp instruments), and similar relationships existed between the perpetrators and victims (the majority were killed by a current or former intimate partner).
By viewing these cases of femicide all together, we can learn what needs to be done to reduce, and ultimately prevent, the killing of women by men
What is the Femicide Census?
The Femicide Census is a database containing information on over one thousand women killed by men in England and Wales since 2009. It is a ground-breaking project which aims to provide a clearer picture of men’s fatal violence against women by allowing for detailed tracking and analysis.
The census has been developed out of an urgent need to address the reality of fatal male violence against women. It can play a key part in the identification of patterns of femicide, the circumstances leading up to it and ultimately help us reduce femicide.
In February 2015 the Femicide Census was launched. It was based on information collected by Karen Ingala Smith and recorded in her blog Counting Dead Women. Since January 2012 she has searched the web for news of women killed by men; information that was hidden in plain sight- in a plethora of Domestic Homicide Reviews, police statistics, local press articles and reports in which women killed by men were mentioned.
She gathered details of the perpetrators and the incident of murder itself, including the date, names, police force area and information about children, recorded motive and the weapon.
In December 2016, the first Femicide Census Report was released.Download the first Femicide Census Report