9.17.15 | Laura Bates
New undergraduates at the University of Bristol have received a “consent quiz” as part of their induction process. The quiz (you can try it yourself here), created by Somerset and Avon Rape and Sexual Abuse Support (Sarsas), aims to get students thinking about sexual consent and to dispel some of the common myths that surround the subject.
This week, Sarsas staff also delivered training to 180 student volunteers who will follow up on the quizzes by delivering consent workshops to new students in their halls over the next three weeks. As the patron of Sarsas, I have seen first-hand the vital frontline work they carry out to support survivors of sexual abuse.
With campaigners still calling on the government to make sex and relationships education compulsory in schools, many young people are arriving at university without basic knowledge of topics such as sexual consent and healthy relationships.
Lisa Benjamin, volunteer and training officer at Sarsas, says: “It’s particularly necessary because of the misconceptions around consent; the traditional idea that the absence of a no means yes. It’s about reframing the decision so people feel clear about the idea of gaining enthusiastic consent from their partner and having healthy discussions about what they both want and are comfortable with.