SYDNEY, Australia - There’s a gendered nature to islamophobia, and despite its prevalence in public spaces, bystanders don’t seem to be intervening to support victims, according to a new report published by Women’s Agenda.
Findings showed most victims of islamophobia were women (78 per cent) and most perpetrators were men (70 per cent), with two in three women being harassed by male perpetrators.
The Islamophobia Register Australia’s (‘Register’) flagship research report was released on Tuesday. Since the inception of the Register (2014-15) until the start of the Covid-19 era (2020-21), there’s been a concerning fall in witness reporting of islamophobia which dropped by about half (from 47 per cent to 24 per cent), according to the report.
Principal Researcher and CSU Associate Professor Dr. Derya Iner says the islamophobic incidents in the report “were mostly committed by men perceived to be from Anglo/European backgrounds and from older cohorts” with the victims being “mostly younger hijabi women from non-White ethnic backgrounds and from vulnerable cohorts, unaccompanied or with children”.
Dr. Iner says these significant characteristics of islamophobia have been seen repeatedly over the eight years of reported incidents and that incidents in guarded places reached up to 70 per cent in the last reporting period.