California Governor Signs Historic “Yes Means Yes” College Sexual Assault Bill

California Adopts 'Yes Means Yes' Sexual Assault Rule

California has become the first state in America to define when “Yes Means Yes” in accordance with sexual assault cases. It has also adopted guidelines for colleges to follow when handling rape allegations.

Last month, lawmakers in the state approved a bill by democrat senator, Kevin de Leon, that would see college campuses in the state change the way they handle allegations of rape. Last night, California governor Jerry Brown finally signed it.

De Leon believes that this legislation will completely shift how colleges in California work to prevent and investigate sexual assaults. Though you’re probably used to hearing the refrain “no means no,” in anti-sexual assault campaigns, in future this will not be the case in California law, which will now require “an affirmative, conscious and voluntary agreement to engage in sexual activity.” In other words, the slogan of sexual consent you will probably hear more of in future is “Yes Means Yes”.

In a statement on Sunday night, de Leon said:

“Every student deserves a learning environment that is safe and healthy. The state of California will not allow schools to sweep rape cases under the rug. We’ve shifted the conversation regarding sexual assault to one of prevention, justice, and healing.”

With this new legislation, it will be (not that it isn’t already) imperative that both parties check in with each other throughout a sexual encounter, making sure that everything is still okay.

This is welcome news for those across the country who have been vocal about the way college campuses tend to deal with cases of sexual assault (i.e. not very well). It is thought that Jerry Brown signing the bill will lead to change in every state across the country with de Leon saying last month:

“If the governor signs it, this will lead the entire country, the nation. It’s very difficult to say no when you’re inebriated or someone slips something into your drink.”

Source: The Guardian