Which towns and cities in the UK do graduates feel the safest in?
Everyone deserves to feel safe in their home, place of work or while studying at university. With ever-increasing movements such as #MeToo exposing the difficult realities surrounding harassment, we decided to conduct a short piece of research with students and graduates who are looking for graduate jobs to find out how safe they feel and their attitudes towards safety in a city they could be trying to relocate to for work.
We asked questions about how safe each graduate felt in their city, especially how safe they considered women to be in their city, whether they felt comfortable walking home after sunset and whether they had been harassed or been made to feel uncomfortable in a variety of situations including in their place of work, university, on the street or in a nightclub/bar.
Graduates feel safest in Glasgow but Nottingham is considered the safest for walking home after sunset
Looking at the top 10 cities that received over 10 responses, students, on average, felt the safest in Glasgow, rating the Scottish city 7.9 out of 10 on safeness. Graduates also felt Glasgow was the safest for women, rating the city an average 6.6 out of 10. On the other hand, Nottingham was rated highest for comfortableness walking home after sunset, with an average rating of 6.3.
Shockingly though, over half of the student and graduate responses from Leicester disclosed they have experienced harassment at university, while 45.45% of responses from Glasgow said they have experienced harassment at their place of work. Furthermore, over 66% of respondents from Liverpool admit to being catcalled on the street.
In other social scenarios, respondents reported experiencing harassment in a bar or nightclub, the highest rates occurring in Glasgow at 63.64%. Furthermore, 10% of graduates and students in Cardiff and Leicester report they don’t feel safe in their university halls or accommodation.
Female graduates experience more harassment in the majority of social scenarios
Breaking down the research by gender of the 863 UK responders, we see some further shocking results. Female students and graduates report experiencing harassment of some kind in all social situations, most notably 441 out of 569 female responders and 294 out of 569 female responders report being harassed on the street or in a nightclub/bar. That’s 77.5% of females reporting to have been harassed on the street and 51.67% of females reporting being harassed in a bar or nightclub.
In comparison, male students and graduate respondents, on average, report feeling safest in their city, believe women to be safe in their city and are very comfortable walking home after sunset in comparison to female students. 30.5% of male students and graduates report not to have experienced any type of harassment mentioned in our research, while 13.48% prefered not to disclose whether they had experienced harassment.
In 2021, we surveyed 937 Debut app users on how safe they feel in their city and their attitudes to staying safe, with a specific focus on how safe it is for women in their city. Data was analysed from UK Debut app users only, leading to 863 responses being analysed for student and graduate experiences. We used the top 10 cities that received over 10 responses when deciding which cities to analyse.