Did you know that college students are in one of the most vulnerable age groups for sexual assault? You can be an active bystander by learning the skills needed to intervene and stop sexual assault.
Sex without consent is rape.
Consent is when all adult parties verbally agree to participate in a sexual act. All parties must:
- share an understanding of what they are consenting to
- share a cultural knowledge about the meaning of the act for which they are giving consent
- offer consent freely, without coercion, force or manipulation
- be fully mentally capable of offering consent
- know that they can offer consent and still maintain the option to change their mind at any given point and still be treated respectfully
Someone can never legally give consent in the state of Arizona if they are:
- under the age of 18
- severely developmentally disabled or seriously mentally ill
- intoxicated or under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol
Sometimes it is very difficult to know when consent is being given. Our society is dripping with mixed signals. It is possible that one of the parties may not feel safe enough to say "no" clearly. Sometimes the signals are there, but they are ignored.
Some people think that "it ruins the moment" to ask aloud if what is happening is okay. By using clear words, the person asking creates a safe and comfortable space (which is the only space for sexual expression). It shows that all parties are respected and valued.
Remember to stop, ask, and clarify. The difference could mean rape.