Sexual Consent

Sexual consent is agreeing to sexual activities that are mutually desirable, legal, as well as enjoyable and satisfying. If your partner says “yes” then you have consent. Remember for every sexual activity you should activity seek consent.


Giving and Receiving Active Consent

  • Communicate your dislikes verbally and firmly, including saying “no”
  • Let your partner know how you feel. Communicate your expectations clearly.
  • Listen to and respect your partner’s wishes.
  • Ask if each level of intimacy is OK. You want to hear a verbal “yes” without coercion.
  • Even if your partner wears clothes you perceive as sexy, this does not necessarily imply a desire for sex. It is your responsibility to seek clear, explicit signals from your partner, and to respect your partner’s wishes at all times.
  • Check out these suggestions on things you can do, say and ask to ensure you are seeking active consent.  


Rules to Remember:

  • If your partner does not respect your wishes, then leave immediately.
  • Your sexual partner/s have the right to say “no” at any time – you need to stop immediately.
  • Sexual activity that escalates to a certain point does not imply consent to go any further.
  • If your partner freezes or does not respond, stop. This likely means your partner doesn’t want to go further.
  • Never presume that silence or lack of resistance means consent.

Alcohol and other drugs… and sexual consent

Alcohol and other drugs reduce your ability to:

  • Make rational decisions.
  • Communicate clearly.
  • Understand sexual reluctance.
  • Understand the consequences of your actions.
  • Notice signs of danger.
  • Protect yourself.

Alcohol and other drugs can also impair your partner’s judgment and willingness to respect your wishes.

Eighty-four percent of acquaintance rapes involve alcohol.

If you limit your consumption of alcohol in situations where sexual activity is likely to occur, you will greatly reduce your risk of sexual coercion, sexual assault, and rape. If you choose not to become intoxicated with strangers, you will also reduce your risk of sexual coercion, sexual assault, and rape.

An intoxicated partner cannot consent legally to sexual activity.

Respect your partner’s wishes even if he or she is intoxicated. A partner’s intoxication is not an excuse or a legal defence in cases of rape and sexual coercion.


How to Ask

Make sure you get consent for any sexual activity and that it’s not just a one off thing. Every time the sexual activity changes (for example, going from kissing to groping, from groping to a hand job, from a hand job to oral sex etc.) ask the question. By asking the questions, you will enjoy sex more by getting what you want… and make sure your partner enjoys sex with you too!! Here are some suggestions about how to ask for consent

“Do you like it when I…?”

“Is it ok if I….?

"Is this good for you?"

“I like when you…”

“Will you…?”

 "Are you comfortable?"

“How does this feel?”

“Do you want to…?"

“Do you want me to go further?”

“Can I…?”

“Do you want me to…?”

 "Are you happy?"

“Is there anything you want me to try?”
"Would you be happy for me to try...?"

 "Do you want me to stop?”


For more information about sexual consent visit:

Reach Out – what is sexual consent? 

For more information about sexual assault visit Sexual Assault Resource Centre

If you were sexually assaulted as a child or underage young person, you can find support from the National organisation Bravehearts.



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Our Mission

To minimise the impact and further transmission of HIV, other blood borne viruses and sexually transmissible infections. To reduce social, legal and policy barriers which prevent access to health information and effective support and prevention services.

WA AIDS Council would like to acknowledge the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as the Traditional Custodians of this country throughout Australia, and their strength, resilience and connection to land and community. In particular, the WA AIDS Council would like to acknowledge the Wadjuk people of the Noongar Nation as the traditional custodians of the land in which our office is located.


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