I ♥ Consent is back with a new identity. Consent manifests in so many parts of life from shaking someone’s hand to initiating sexual activity. These are both very normal parts of our lives for a lot of people and it’s important we get it right.
We want to ensure that everyone knows what consent actually is and reduce the stigma around using it.
It is worrying to think that you might be made to do something you don’t want to do, let alone in a sexual context. But also think how you would feel if your brother, your best friend, or your cousin told you that they had been made to have sex after a night out. Or your housemate’s boyfriend felt like she owed him because he paid for the pizza, despite saying she didn’t want to have sex. It would make you feel pretty uneasy.
The thing is that this does happen. It might not be your housemate but it happened to someone’s housemate, it might not have been your sister, but she was someone’s sister. This is what we need to stop.
We need to make sure that consent is comfortable, that it is normal to ask for it, and that we respect each other’s boundaries.
We want to incorporate consent into everyone’s daily life. As part of our Welfare Training we have been talking to our student committees on what they pledge to do. Here are some examples: