Permission is Everything
For the launch of Portland State University's relationship and sexual violence prevention program, we were armed with a shocking statistic– 84% of perpetrators of sexual and relationship violence don’t know they’re perpetrators.
Our further research revealed that the issue isn’t just that they don’t know they’re perpetrators– the real issue is that they don’t know why they’re perpetrators. During interviews, we asked what consent was and were given responses like:
“I’m reaching downstairs and my hand isn’t getting slapped, that’s consent.”
“If she doesn’t say no or voice a discrepancy then it’s mutually consensual.”
“...there is an unspoken element to it. I feel like I always just know, but I guess there some sort of sign that people give.”
It seems as though they’re confident they already know what consent is but in reality they’re clueless.
Save people from unintentionally becoming perpetrators while also empowering victims to speak up. Switching our thinking from preventing violence to promoting open communication around sex is key to making people feel confident and equipped to have awesome sex. Happy participants means happy sex!
Our campaign was directed at those most likely to become unintentional perpetrators (men) while still being accessible to everyone, regardless of gender or sexual orientation. We wanted everyone to feel equally knowledgeable and engaged in their sexual experiences.
Sex is more fun with equal opportunity orgasms. When you ask your partners if they want to have sex, we want them to say “yes, yes YES OHMYOHYESSSSSS!!!!!”
Jessica Sadie Burchett