What is Consent?consent1

Consent is a choice in which an individual agrees by free will to engage in sexual acts. Because a person is in a current relationship or had previously been in a relationship does not mean that person automatically consents to sexual activity. Consent and submission are not the same. Because someone may submit to a sex act does NOT mean that consent was given. If someone was sexually assaulted and did not fight during the assault that does not mean the person gave consent.

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Consent cannot be given if:

  • An individual is asleep.
  • An individual is intoxicated or drugged (on legal or illegal substances).
  • An individual is unconscious.
  • An individual is not of the age of consent.
  • An individual is unable to communicate.
  • A person is threatened either verbally, in writing, or physically.
  • A person is physically forced to engage in an act.
  • A person is intimidated in to engaging in an act.
  • A person is cognitively impaired.

Remember:

  • Consent is cooperation in act/attitude pursuant to exercise of free will and knowledge of the nature of the act. A person must be 14 years old, of sound mind and body, not impaired by illness, drugs, or alcohol, and not forced to give consent.
  • Age of Consent is 15. It’s illegal for someone who is more than four years older to have sex with a 15-year-old. If someone is 16-17, the partner can’t be more than 10 years older.
  • What constitutes legal consent? Both parties must actively give their consent to sexual activity. This means to ask before doing. Neither person can be under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Neither can be mentally disabled, passed out or asleep. Both people must have equal power in the relationship.
  • If you use force, threats, coercion, or intimidation, get someone drunk or high, slip them a drug or use a weapon in order to have sex with them, that is SEXUAL ASSAULT.

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