THERE have been 40 new cases of reported rape this year and 30 new cases of sexual harassment instances, both showing an increase from last year, according to the Fiji Women's Crisis Centre.
In 2011, there were 36 new clients who reported instances of rape, while this year has shown an increase to 40 new clients.
New clients are those who are reporting rape for the first time, while repeat ones are those who come back to the centre for additional help, explained the crisis centre's research officer, Angelyn Singh.
FWCC director Shamima Ali said many cases still went unreported.
"From our estimation based on media reports, anecdotal evidence, various surveys and from our numerous community engagements with women, men and the young, this is just maybe 10-12 per cent of the overall incidents," she said.
In the centre's annual report this year, sexual harassment cases showed an increase in new reports from last year, going from 26 to 30 new clients who reported sexual harassment to the centre.
"For rape, sexual assaults and sex harassment, underreporting would be greater though there is increased reporting, the majority of cases never see the light of day," Ms Ali said yesterday.
The remaining reported cases of rape and sexual harassment came from the Ba Women's Crisis Centre, the Nadi Women's Crisis Centre and the Rakiraki Women's Crisis Centre.