Department of Recreation and Wellness

Wellness Connection 
Sexual Assault Awareness: Risk Prevention

The responsibility of preventing sexual assault lies with the person initiating sexual behavior, as that is the person who has the power to stop what he or she is doing. With this in mind, these are things to consider when initiating sexual behavior:
Sexual assault is a crime and violation of both the Code of Student Conduct and BGSU Policy on Violence. As such, being found responsible for a Code of Student Conduct violation involving "sexual contact without permission" can result in a maximum sanction of expulsion from BGSU. Additionally, criminal charges could be brought forward as well as civil litigation within the court system.

Because sexual assault is a crime of power and control, the most important thing to consider when engaging in sexual behavior is the CONSENT of the other person involved. Only a person's consent gives one the right to engage in sexual contact. Therefore, consent must be many things, including:

  • Verbal and clear: Consent cannot be implied through seemingly "mixed" messages. One's sexual partner must be given every opportunity to communicate his/her wishes and limits on the degree of behavior that is initiated. No means no, and when in doubt, ask first.
  • Sober and unimpaired: Consent can only be given by a person who has full control of his or her mental capacities. A person who is substantially impaired is not legally in a position to give consent.
  • Consistent and prompt: Even if someone has agreed to be sexually involved with someone, that person has the right to withdraw consent at any time, even during behavior that might already be interpreted as sexual. Consent is not implied by the fact that dinner was bought for someone, or that the parties were sexually involved in the past or even if someone was perceived by the perpetrator as "willing."
  • Unforced and non-threatened: Use of force, threats, intimidation, or coercion is a willful denial of a person's right to freely give his/her consent.

The well-being of the other person is of the utmost importance during any sexual encounter. Be aware of what your partner is saying or not saying during an encounter. When in doubt about proceeding to the next level of intimacy, ask. Checking in with your partner about what you are doing is a way of sharing the power and control of the situation that was initiated by you with them. This keeps the interaction an equal and safe situation for both parties. 

Contact Us

Mail: 214 Student Recreation Center
1411 Ridge Road
Bowling Green, OH 43403-0146