Sexual Assault Awareness Month is just a few days away and has many of you know, Voices of Hope is launching their Consent Coaster Campaign. We even wanted a way to have individuals to be able to participate even if they did not get to a restaurant in Pittsburgh that had coasters, so voila, wristbands!
The wristbands were developed to match one of the coasters saying, “There are no blurred lines when it comes to consent.” The wristband simply states, “No blurred Lines.” This could mean so many things so we wanted to ensure that those who were equipping themselves with bracelets had an a few guidelines on consent so that when asked, they could educate those inquiring.
We are sure though you are all more than capable of doing so but below is an overview of consent.
Sexual Assault has recently become a hot topic in the last view years, especially on college campuses. Although, through education and awareness, we can make a change. Personally, I believe that if we educate our children at an early age on the understanding of consent and sexual violence, we could decrease the issue tremendously.
Consent is a simple word, really, it is. Consent is the permission for something to happen or agreement to do something. Honestly, we consent to a lot of things in our daily lives. For example, when is grade school, I had to ask the teacher permission to use the restroom, which is consenting to use the bathroom. When out somewhere with a crowd of people and you want to sit at a stool at the bar, you ask the person next to that stool, “Is it ok to sit here?” You get consent from another to sit next to them, or no this seat is taken.
Consent is in everything we do, so why would it be different when it comes to sex. Yes means yes, and no means no. And if you are unable to give a proper consent, it is no. Silence is not a yes.
Consent it about respect. We need to respect and be kind to one another. So why the phrase, “No Blurred Lines.” When it comes to consent, it is black and white. No matter what state you are in. There is no in between. Back in 2013, there was a song by Robin Thicke called Blurred Lines, which actually was an extremely popular hit, but caused controversy due to some of the verbiage. Please check out our previous blog post on it here.
So when someone asks you, “No blurred lines, what does that mean?” Here are some good responses:
- Consent is a loud and resounding yes. It is as black and white as it seems, no blurred lines.
- Consent is a process. Even though you consented to something to last week, doesn’t mean that this Saturday you don’t need to ask to do something.
- Consent is mutual. Both parties need to be fully aware.
- Consent is respect. We use consent in our everyday life, and it should be any different when it comes to sex.
Thank you to all of those who are participating and if you would like a wristband, let us know! We have some left!
Lastly, here are some other ways to get involved in sexual assault awareness month:
- Wear red lipstick and show solidarity for survivors. www.redmylips.org
- Stop victim blaming.
- Stop rape jokes, and stand up for what is right when you hear one.
- Be an active bystander.
- Participate in #30daysofsaam (See the graphic below)
- Go to any of the locations that are distributing consent coasters. Check them out at www.voices-of-hope.org
- Make sure to share with Voices of Hope when you wear your consent bracelet or see a coaster!!!!
Now get out there and change a culture!!!!