Contact: Gina Lauterio
Bureaucrats in the Bedroom: Most Say ‘No’ to Government Mandates for Consent to Sex
WASHINGTON / November 12, 2014 – A national opinion poll has revealed the vast majority of persons are opposed to laws that seek to mandate how persons give consent to sexual relations. When asked whether the government should have the “authority to determine how partners give their consent to sex,” 85% of respondents answered ‘No.
In late September, Gov. Jerry Brown signed a controversial Affirmative Consent bill requiring that all California college students give their ongoing “affirmative, conscious, and voluntary” consent during the course of having sex. Similar laws are being considered in other states.
The survey was conducted October 27 – 28. Over 600 persons participated in the telephone poll. The respondents consisted of 55.6% males and 44.4% females. Detailed findings can be viewed here: http://www.saveservices.org/sexual-assault/affirmative-consent/survey-overview/
Many respondents agreed that consent to sex should be conscious, voluntary, and ongoing. But 6 out of 7 respondents had not heard of the California Affirmative Consent law, so it is unlikely these persons held an opinion whether or not consent should be “affirmative.”
Affirmative Consent policies have proven to be contentious. Many have criticized the approach as being unlikely to deter a rapist intent on assaulting a woman, and for removing the presumption of innocence from the accused.
“Hopefully lawmakers will get the message that Americans don’t want ‘Big Sister’ government dictating the most intimate details of their private lives,” explains SAVE spokesperson Sheryle Hutter. “Instead, lawmakers should be considering proven approaches to the problem of sexual assault.”
SAVE has developed a bill that would require that campus sexual assault cases be handled by local law enforcement authorities, not untrained campus disciplinary panels: http://www.saveservices.org/camp/campus-rape-courts/
Stop Abusive and Violent Environments is working to promote effective solutions to campus sexual assault: http://www.saveservices.org/