Pittsburgh Post Gazette
September 30, 2014 12:00 AM
Alison Vekshin and John Lauerman / Bloomberg News
SAN FRANCISCO -- Students at the University of California at Berkeley said they hoped that the first state law requiring students to signal their assent before sex would set a nationwide example for college relationships.
“It’s really important that mutuality is discussed, and it’s not something that is assumed,” Allyn Benintendi, 18, a Berkeley freshman from Millbrae, said Monday in an interview at the school, which already has been operating under a similar policy. “It’s very California to do it first, but it’s very important that other states start adopting the same model.”
Gov. Jerry Brown, a 76-year-old Democrat, announced that he signed legislation Sunday directing colleges that receive state financial-aid money to make students responsible for getting affirmative consent -- either verbal or through some physical signal.
Affirmed consent is defined as an “affirmative, conscious, and voluntary agreement to engage in sexual activity” with the consent ongoing throughout. The bill Mr. Brown signed, SB967, states that “lack of protest or resistance does not mean consent, nor does silence.” The bill also says a person cannot give consent if she or he is intoxicated or unconscious.