Sex without consent is rape. There is no place for ambiguity, presumption or pressure. That is the message today from Lincolnshire Police.
Presenting a united front, we are launching this campaign in partnership with Rape Crisis, Trust House, Victim Support, Spring Lodge and the University of Lincoln.
The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) and the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) are adding their voices in support of this very important campaign.
Working with the County Council Sexual Violence and Abuse Partnership, and as part of the wider #NoMore campaign, we aim to engage on the importance of being 100% clear on sexual consent.
Together, we will spell out the simple message that sexual consent relies on the person having freedom and capacity to agree to sexual activity.
- Consent cannot be implied, assumed or ambiguous
- Consent is not the absence of objection; someone does not have to say “no”
- Consent for one thing does not imply consent for anything else
- Consent one day does not mean consent for another day
- Being married or in a relationship does not mean automatic consent
- Consent is not implied by clothing, attitude or behaviour
- Consent can be withdrawn at any time
- Someone drunk or on drugs may not have capacity to consent
- Someone who is unconscious cannot consent
- Consent given after being bullied, pestered, intimidated or threatened is not consent
Tea and consent
From today, to highlight some of the ludicrous misconceptions, we will be using a simple cartoon called Tea and Consent (Copyright 2015 Emmeline May, rockstardinosaurpirateprincess.com and Rachel Brian blueseatstudios.com).
Launching the campaign in Lincoln city centre, Deputy Chief Constable Craig Naylor said, "What is, and is not consent may seem obvious to many of us but the awful truth is that rape is reported to us every week. We are committed to looking after survivors of sexual violence, investigating crimes to a high standard and educating those who could otherwise become perpetrators. Clear explanations of what is acceptable are unfortunately still necessary. We need to do all we can to make the message clear that sex without consent is rape. This campaign targets potential perpetrators with the message that when it comes to consent, you need to be 100% sure. The consequences of getting this wrong are devastating."
Police and Crime Commissioner Marc Jones offered his support for the campaign. Standing alongside the Deputy Chief at the campaign launch, he said, "Consent really is a simple concept and yet misconceptions and myths sadly still exist in some minds. I fully support Lincolnshire Police in this campaign to educate those people who still don’t get it. You need to be clear on consent; there is no place for ambiguity, presumption or pressure."
Julie Spencer, Head of Student Wellbeing at the University of Lincoln said, "We’re pleased to support the #GetConsent campaign and raise awareness of important issues around consent, appropriate behaviour, and staying safe. The University and the Students’ Union have been very proactive on this topic, and we’ve worked on a number of projects to build understanding and healthy attitudes.
"It’s very important that young people discuss consent, and open and transparent campaigns like this empower people to make smart choices, speak out if they need to, and most importantly, feel supported."
Charlotte Caulton-Scott from the CPS explained the prevalence of consent in the cases they deal with, “The issue of whether the victim consented or not is the key feature of the majority of cases we prosecute. Rape is not just about attacks by strangers in dark alleyways.
"The issue of consent affects partners, married couples and friends. Any kind of unwanted sexual activity is without consent and is therefore an offence. It is certainly not the case that an allegation will be ignored because it seems as though is one person’s word against another’s.
"The CPS will always look to build a case, working with the police to find what evidence we can use to prove to a jury that a victim has not consented. Having worked with so many victims of rape, we at the CPS know just how traumatic this offence can be; we know that it can destroy a victim’s sense of self-worth and cause life-long damage. I hope that this campaign will make people think about what consent means; it is everyone’s responsibility to understand its meaning and know whether someone really consents to sexual activity."
Laura Wint-McKane, CEO, Lincolnshire Rape Crisis said, "As an organisation we continue to see the impact and trauma caused by the lack of awareness and the lack of respect for consent. As a specialist organisation we react to the devastating effects of consent not being sought and gained. We also raise awareness and educate that anything less than an individual having the capacity to physically, intellectually, and emotionally give an enthusiastic YES is not consent. The importance of awareness raising campaigns is enormous and we are pleased to see that Lincolnshire Police are working with specialists to deliver their message."
Win a year’s supply of tea!
As part of our campaign to highlight the importance of consent, Lincolnshire Police are offering the chance to win a year’s supply of tea! All you need to do is to watch the ‘tea and consent’ video. You can do this on social (please re-tweet or like) or at one of our public screening sessions across the County.
Terms and Conditions:
- Prize consists of 1120 ‘one cup’ bags of a leading brand tea to be collected from a police station you specify or delivered if collection is inconvenient.
- Not open to Lincolnshire Police staff.
The #GetConsent campaign
We will be using social media to promote the campaign. Please help spread the message by sharing our posts on Facebook and retweeting on Twitter.
We will be using a big screen in the city and town centres to play the tea and consent video and to promote the Ask for Angela initiative. Screenings are currently planned for Lincoln, Boston and Skegness.
We will be targeting users of the night time economy via pubs, clubs and taxi firms highlighting the potential impact of alcohol on the clarity of consent.
We will be promoting the help available to anyone affected by publicising the following information on the support available:
Have you been affected?
For more information see our advice section on rape and sexual assault. Here you will find out more about how we deal with reports and about our Emerald Team who are specially trained officers and experienced detectives committed and dedicated to rape investigation.
If you need help
Call 101 (or 999 in an emergency)
Or, if you don’t want to speak to police contact one of these support agencies:
- In the year ending March 2016 approximately 111,000 men and 533,000 women were victims of sexual assault (including attempts); 0.7% of men and 3.2% of women experienced a sexual assault (3.6% of men and 19.9% of women since the age of 16; and for rape including attempts 0.3% of men and 5.3% of women experienced this since the age of 16). From CPS Violence Against Women and Girls Strategy 2017 to 2020
- 80% of cases that went to court resulted in conviction in 2016-2017. From the CPS Violence Against Women and Girls crime report 2016-2017
- 12% of people aged 16 to 59 had experienced sexual assault (including attempt) since they were 16. From the Office of National Statistics
13 Jan 20 10:30 AM