Sexual Violence

What is Sexual Violence?

Sexual violence is defined in the UK by the Sexual Offences Act 2003 which lists 52 sexual offences.

It is a non-legal term which is used as an umbrella expression to refer to and include various different sexual offences. For the purposes of Bangor University policy and guidance, the term includes but is not limited to rape, sexual assault by penetration, sexual assault, sexual harassment, stalking, ‘revenge porn’ and domestic violence.

Sexual assault is any type of sexual activity that you do not consent to, ranging from inappropriate touching to rape. It doesn't have to be a stranger and may not leave any visible signs. It can be verbal, visual, or anything that forces a person to join an unwanted sexual act.

Behaviours such as unwanted groping or kissing along with other forms of sexual assault are a criminal offence which, if reported to the police, may result in an arrest and a conviction.

What is Sexual Consent?

Sexual consent is when a person agrees to participate in any sexual activity. This is a necessary requirement of all types of sexual activity.

Being in a relationship with someone, or consenting to previous sexual activity, does not imply consent to sex.

The Sexual Offences Act 2003 states that an individual can only give their consent if he or she is free and has the capacity to make that choice.

Sexual activity without consent is against the law. You should never feel ashamed about rejecting sexual activity – everybody has the right to say no.