Sexual violence (including sexual assault) is a criminal offence and contrary to the University Dignity at Work and Study Policies.

Sexual violence is any unwanted (non-consensual) sexual act or activity. There are many different kinds of sexual violence that exist on a continuum, including but not restricted to: rape, sexual assault, child sexual abuse, sexual harassment, coercion, gaslighting, rape and assault within marriage / relationships, female genital mutilation, trafficking and sexual exploitation, forced marriage and so-called honour-based violence and ritual abuse, which can also be forms of domestic violence. Sexual violence can be psychological and/or physical.

Consenting to a sexual act or activity involves agreeing by choice and having the freedom and capacity to make that choice.

A person is free to make a choice if nothing bad would happen to them if they said no.

Capacity is about whether someone is physically and/or mentally able to make a choice and to understand the consequences of that choice.

What is sexual assault?

A person commits sexual assault if they intentionally touch another person, the touching is sexual and the person does not consent.

It involves all unwanted physical contact of a sexual nature and ranges from pinching, embracing, groping and kissing, to rape and sexual assault which involves penetration without consent.

Consent is agreeing by choice and having the freedom and capacity to make that choice.

A person is free to make a choice if nothing bad would happen to them if they said no. Capacity is about whether someone is physically and/or mentally able to make a choice and to understand the consequences of that choice.

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