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Oregon Women Face Higher Rates of Rape, Violence, Depression, and Wealth Disparity

A new report by the Women’s Foundation of Oregon spotlights the good, the bad, and the ugly parts of being female in our state.

By Tuck Woodstock October 5, 2016

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Women's Foundation of Oregon executive director Emily Evans speaks on the steps of the Oregon Capitol.

How does it feel to know that more than half of Oregon’s female population—that’s 1 million women and girls—have been sexually assaulted? How about the fact that more than a third of Oregon women have faced domestic violence? Or that, on the flip side, women and girls commit fewer than 5 percent of Oregon’s violent crimes?

The Women’s Foundation of Oregon’s recently released Count Her In report is full of facts guaranteed to make any feminist sad, scared, and angry. But amid the darkness, there are bright spots, too—for example, Oregon women vote and volunteer at some of the highest rates in the country, far outperforming their male counterparts. Peruse the full report for yourself here, or read our summary below to learn more about the barriers and triumphs of our state’s female population. 

The Bad:

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    Nearly half of female Oregonians have experienced a traumatic childhood event, such as abuse or neglect.
  • 27 percent of female Oregonians have been raped, compared to 18 percent of women and girls nationally. Native American women face the highest rates of attack.
  • Oregon women face the highest rates of depression (33  percent) and heavy drinking (9 percent) in the nation.
  • More than one-third of female Oregonians of color live in poverty.
  • 17 percent of transgender Oregonians live on less than $10,000 per year.
  • Hispanic women in Oregon earn $0.53 per dollar earned by all men; this number doesn’t include undocumented workers, who earn far less.
  • Oregon’s gender wealth gap is one of the largest in the country.
  • This entire chart.
  • Women own only 21 percent of Oregon businesses.
  • Oregon’s child-care costs are among the highest in the nation, often costing more than half of a single parent’s income.
  • Oregon women are 80 percent more likely than men to live in poverty after age 65.
  • Nearly one-fifth of Oregon’s homeless women lost their homes due to domestic violence

We've arrived on the Capitol steps! #CountHerIn

A photo posted by Women's Foundation of Oregon (@womens_foundation_of_oregon) on

The Good:

  • Oregon women and girls are more physically active than their counterparts in any other state.
  • Oregon women vote at a rate that’s 15 percentage points higher than the national average.
  • 36 percent of Oregon women volunteer, compared to 26 percent of Oregon men and 28 percent of women nationwide.
  • Women serve in public office at higher rates than women in other states.
  • Women hold more than half the seats on Oregon’s nonprofit boards, and are 71 percent of the state’s community college presidents.

For more information, including all sorts of fun/gloomy charts and statistics, download the Count Her In report here.

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