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Health & Counseling Center


What is Sexual Assault?

As defined in the University of Denver Honor Code, sexual misconduct includes, but is not limited to any physical act that is sexual in nature and performed without the effective consent of all parties.

Sexual assault is any sexual activity, intrusion or penetration on a victim, against the victim's will, whether this involves vaginal, anal, or oral sexual acts. If the victim says "no" and the perpetrator commits sexual intrusion or penetration, that is against the victim's will, or non-consensual.

Simply stated, if one person does not want this sexual activity to be happening, the other person is committing sexual assault.

Consent must be:

  • Mutual
  • Agreed upon while sober (no drugs or alcohol involved)
  • Without harassment or coercion

Not only does "no mean no," but in order to have mutual, consensual sex, both parties have to say yes. Don't assume your partner means yes, even if they haven't said no. Silence does not mean consent.

Consent is not effective if it results from the use of physical force, threats, intimidation or coercion. A person always retains the right to revoke consent at any point during an activity. 

Be sure that when you're about to engage in any type of sexual activity that you're both consenting to this activity. Ask if it's okay. Never assume.