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But you wanted sex last week?

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Jenny Overal

on 29 November 2016

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Transcript of But you wanted sex last week?

Who cannot consent?
What is the legal age of consent?
Despite what young people may feel in a given situation, there are legal boundaries to their ability to give consent, so any voluntary agreement to sexual activity by a child under 16 cannot be defined as consent in law, according to the Sexual Offences Act 2003 (i.e. any sexual activity involving one or more person who is under the age of 16 is illegal).

How does the law define consent?
The Sexual Offences Act 2003 states that a person has consented ‘if she or he agrees by choice, and has the freedom and capacity to make that choice’. There are three important parts to this.

Firstly, there is the emphasis on choice – a deliberate decision.

Secondly, there is the question of capacity to consent. For example, is the person old enough, are they capable of understanding what is happening, are they intoxicated by alcohol or affected by drugs?

Finally, the law asks whether a person makes their choice freely, without manipulation, exploitation or duress.
What are sexual offences?
Let's talk about sex.... (consent)
What does 'giving consent' in a sexual relationship mean?

Who needs to give consent?

Sexual consent
The law also considers some people to be unable to give consent, for instance someone below a certain age or with a severe mental disability. In these cases, it is not necessary to prove that that person has not given consent. Instead, all that needs to be shown is that a sexual act has taken place.
In all cases, the law is clear that it is the responsibility of the person seeking consent to ensure that the other person agrees by choice and has the freedom and capacity to make that choice.
In relation to many other offences, there is no requirement to prove that consent has not been given. Only the act itself and the age of the victim or other criteria need to be proved. These offences include:
 rape, assault by penetration or sexual assault of a child under 13
 inciting or causing a person to engage in sexual activity with a child under 13
 child sexual offences involving children under 16
 children under 18 having sexual relations with someone in a position of trust
 children under 18 involved in sexual activity with family members over 18
 persons with a mental disorder which impedes choice being induced, threatened or deceived, or who have sexual relations with care workers.
Send me a picture..
What is the law surrounding sending 'sexts' or pictures?
A "sext" is a self-generated explicit image which is sent to other people over the internet.

In one recent case, a teenage girl who sent a topless picture of herself to her boyfriend was investigated after it was deemed she had distributed an indecent image of a child.

The girl's boyfriend, who forwarded the image to his friends after they broke up, is reported to have been given a caution.

Detective Inspector Martin Hillier warns that court action for such offences may even mean a child is forced to register as a sex offender.

DI Hillier wrote: "I have grave concerns over the amount of referrals Nottinghamshire Police are receiving on a daily basis in relation to naked images being sent between teenagers via either social networking, texts or mobile phone apps.

"It is crucial that children (under 18 years) understand that every internet site and social networking site is monitored by an administrator.

"When photographs that fall within the category of an indecent image (even if taken with consent) are uploaded, reports are made by the administrators to the police.

"If a person is aged over 10yrs and distributes (shares - even to friends) an indecent image then they can be arrested, charged and dealt with for this offence.

"If they are found guilty they must then register as a sex offender."

The officer stressed that pictures are almost impossible to remove from the internet after they have been uploaded.

"An individual's on-line reputation needs protecting as it stays with them for the rest of their life," DI Hillier added

Do you have any questions?
What have you learnt from this session?
Seeking further advice:
Speak to Tutor
Pastoral Manager
Sexual Health Nurse here in N110 10.30-2.30 pm

Sexual touching
Sexual Assault
child sexual abuse

Sex offences are crimes that are covered by the Sexual Offences Act 2003.
Full transcript