CONSENT – A MINE FIELD

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CONSENT– A MINE FIELD

Currently, the Law as it stands in NSW regarding consent to sexual intercourse is that each party must give their conscious and voluntary agreement to the act.

This agreement can be expressed verbally or in actions and likewise the refusal of consent, or withdrawal of consent, may be communicated in words or in actions.

Importantly, not physically resisting another person is not to be taken as consent.

There are currently proposed reforms before the NSW Law Reform Commission that if adopted by Parliament would potentially remove being able to rely upon consent by way of actions alone. This may well lead to a circumstance whereby express verbal consent to sexual intercourse must be obtained in each encounter.

A great many sexual assault allegations occur in a context of drunkenness and people would be well advised to think very carefully about the choices they make whilst intoxicated and the steps they have taken to guarantee their prospective partner is consenting.

Whilst is may be unsexy to ask for consent it is perhaps the only safe way forward for both your friend and yourself.

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