Female viewers are being disproportionately targeted for not paying the licence fee. It’s got to stop
Look at patterns of criminal offending, and one of the first things to stand out is the differences between men and women. Men dominate when it comes to violent and sexual crime: more than four-fifths of perpetrators of violent crime are male. Not a surprise when you consider that men are more likely to be physically and sexually violent than women: so far, so straightforward.
But for one of the most minor crimes – not paying for a TV licence – the pattern reverses. Women account for three-quarters of criminal convictions for watching live TV services or BBC iPlayer without a licence, and a huge chunk of all criminal convictions against women, one-third, are for non-payment of the licence. Are women really 50% more likely to engage in evasion than men, or are they getting disproportionately lumbered with convictions?
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