Australian feminist, environmental activist and whistleblower Isla MacGregor gave a compelling case against Amnesty International’s “Sex Work policy” at the Women’s International League For Peace and Freedom (WILPF) forum in Hobart.
I have worked in sexual violence for 10 years and this practice is nothing new. Today it hit the headlines that police would be using consent forms to ask victims of rape and sexual violence to hand over their mobile phones to check up to 7 years of evidence, media, messages, internet history and call logs when they report rape or sexual violence.
Media outlets have also reported that police have refused to take rape and sexual violence reports where the woman has refused to hand over her phone – resulting in viable cases being ignored and not investigated because the woman refused to give access to her data.
Laws are seeking to elucidate the problem of “rape by fraud.”
Ms. Short, 70, wants a universal law stating that consent is “freely given, knowledgeable, and informed agreement.” This may sound obvious, but it’s actually not, because there’s no universal definition of consent in the United States. Each state defines it differently, if it defines it at all.
“Most people think all types of agreement are consent,” said Ms. Short, who has written three books and done a TedX Talk on the subject. “They’re not.” While Ms. Short does not equate trickery to obtain sex with violent rape, she does believe it should be a Class D or E felony, with jail sentences of one to four years and a fine of $10,000.
Ms. Short says there is a clear distinction between consent and assent. “Consent means ‘freely given, knowledgeable and informed agreement.’ Assent means ‘agreement on the face of it.’ So, when someone tells you a lie, you can be agreeing on the face of it but you’re not knowledgeable or informed. You can assent and agree, but that doesn’t mean you’re consenting.”
Some worry that legislating deception is a slippery slope, because where do you draw the line? Is it deception if a woman dates two men concurrently and they don’t know about each other? Or what if you inject Botox into your crow’s feet and say you are younger than you are, or say “I love you” in order to have sex, but don’t mean it? In 2014, a sexual assault by fraud bill was introduced in New Jersey after a woman was impregnated by a man who falsely claimed to be a British spy. The bill went nowhere.
Ms. Short is hopeful that the bill will pass. “No one should be tricked, deceived, coerced, violently overwhelmed, drugged or intoxicated into sexual conduct,” she said. “Everyone has the right to determine who they engage with sexually based on both knowledge of the action and clear and informed knowledge of the actor.”
We, the undersigned, are Women of Colour from Britain, the United States, Canada, South Africa, Holland and Australia. We are visiting London in February to take part in the ‘Women of Colour Against the Sex Trade’ event due to take place there on Thursday, February 21st.
We write to you to invite you to come and hear us speak, as we will be discussing the harm and damage done to our communities by the global sex trade. It is hoped that by hearing us you will rethink Amnesty’s policy of 2015, which endorses the “all aspects” of the sex trade and urges governments worldwide to adopt laws and policies that endorse the full decriminalization of the sex trade, including pimps, brothel owners and buyers of sexual access, predominantly to female bodies.
A man has pleaded guilty to a felony terroristic threat charge after authorities said he threating to target women in a mass shooting because he couldn’t get a girlfriend.
Police said Cleary wrote on Facebook he was planning to become a mass shooter because he was still a virgin and wanted to kill as many women as possible.
He was arrested during a trip to Provo, Utah, on January 19, the same day women’s marches were held around the country. Colorado authorities have said he was on probation after stalking and threatening women there.
A controversial magistrate under investigation after suggesting a rape complainant had “buyer’s remorse” is again the subject of a grievance lodged with the judicial watchdog after a lawyer was trolled online.
Mr Pithouse made headlines last year after revelations about his comments in VOCAT, including the suggestion Penny had “put herself in that position” and the phrase: “you can’t profit from your own malfeasance”.
Penny’s lawyer had argued she had been unable to consent to sex because she was intoxicated.
In Penny’s case, the prosecution decided there was not enough evidence, but she was given the option to go to the victims’ tribunal instead.
Penny said her experience at VOCAT had left her “broken”.