"Every Six Hours": A National Study of Female Homicide in South Africa

"Every Six Hours": A National Study of Female Homicide in South Africa

This policy brief reports on the findings of the first national homicide study. It is fundamentally retrospective, with data collected on female homicides of women aged 14 and over in South Africa in 1999. Data was collected from a national representative sample of 25 Medico Legal laboratories (referred to here as mortuaries). This enabled the statistics to be weighted in order to estimate the national intimate femicide rate and factors associated with the murders and case outcomes.


Shanaaz Mathews
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Shanaaz Mathews is the director of the Children’s Institute and a Professor in the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Cape Town. She has 30 years’ experience in the women’s and children’s sectors. She has worked within civil society organizations as an academic and technical advisor to government programmes specializing in violence against women and child rights. She holds a PhD in Public Health and a Bachelor of Social Sciences both from the University of Cape Town.

Naeemah Abrahams
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Naeemah Abrahams is the deputy director of the Gender and Health Research Unit of the Medical Research Council. She has a nursing background and completed a Masters in Public Health at UWC in 1997, followed by a PhD in Community Health in 2002 at UCT.

Lorna J Martin
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Lorna J Martin is an internationally acclaimed researcher and Head of the Division of Forensic Pathology at the University of Cape Town where she does research in Pathology, Toxicology and Forensic Science.

Lisa Vetten
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Lisa Vetten is the former manager of the Gender Programme at the Centre for the study of Violence and Reconciliation. In 2013 she obtained a Master of Arts degree in Political Studies (cum laude) from the University of the Witwatersrand. Her dissertation was entitled 'Deserving and undeserving women: A case study of South African policy and legislation addressing domestic violence.

Lize Van Der Merwe
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Lize Van Der Merwe is a Researcher formerly a part of the South African Medical Research Council.

Rachel Jewkes
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Professor Rachel Jewkes is the Executive Scientist for Research Strategy in the Office of the SAMRC President. She is an A1 rated scientist. She was formerly Director of the South African Medical Research Council’s Gender and Health Research Unit and is an Honorary Professor at the University of the Witwatersrand School of Public Health. She holds a MBBS, MSc, MD Public Health Medicine from the University of London.

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