WASHINGTON — The Justice Department says the rate of sexual violence against women and girls age 12 or older fell 64 percent in a decade and has remained stable for five years.
In 2010, women and girls nationwide experienced about 270,000 rapes or sexual assaults, compared with 556,000 in 1995, according to a Bureau of Justice Statistics survey released Thursday.
Rates declined from a peak of 5 per 1,000 women in 1995 to 1.8 per 1,000 women in 2005. The figure remained unchanged from 2005 to 2010.
On Thursday, President Barack Obama will sign legislation updating the Violence Against Women Act, which funds training for police and for judges, strengthening the criminal justice system’s response to crimes against women.