Sexual assault

Sexual assault is any unwanted sexual contact up to and including rape without a person's consent. Sexual assault is an umbrella term that may include kissing, fondling/touching, oral, anal or vaginal penetration.

What is consent?

The unambiguous and willing participation or cooperation in act, behavior or attitude that is commonly understood to be consistent with the exercise of free will.

Consent requires participants who are lawful adults, fully conscious, equally accessible and legally competent to act, have communicated their willingness, cooperation or permission to participate in the specific sexual activity engaged in, are positive and clear about their desires and can cease ongoing consensual activity at any time.

What is consent chart

Refusal to consent does not have to be verbal; it can be expressed with precise gestures, body language or attitude.

Prior sexual history, by itself, does not constitute consent, nor does consenting to sexual activity with one person imply consent to sexual activity with another person.

Consent is coherent

People cannot consent if they are incapacitated due to drugs or alcohol. You may be able to tell if someone is incapacitated if they:

  • Cannot stand or walk without wobbling, falling or needing to lean on something or someone for support.
  • Has slurred speech and difficulty communicating.
  • Is passed out or sleeping.
  • Has vomited or urinated on themselves.

When in doubt, just stop. Respect yourself and your partner.

Common questions