Why consent matters
A timeline of rape culture in Canada
Examining the evolution of rape culture in Canadian universities over the past three years.
February 3, 2014, 1:09 PM ADT
Last updated February 4, 2014, 4:04 PM ADT
From Rehtaeh Parsons to the SMU rape chant, consent and rape culture have been hot topics in Canadian media over the past few years.
Sexual assault is a difficult topic for many to discuss and also report. In 2009, Statistics Canada reported in their General Social Survey that 88 per cent of sexual assaults in Canada go unreported to the police. In 2007, the rate of reported sexual assaults in Nova Scotia was 75 per 100,000 people and was higher than the national average of 65 per 100,000.
Halifax and its surrounding area have been at the forefront for some of the most recent stories involving rape culture, and over the past year many who live in the city have been attempting to make a change.
Committees have arisen within university campuses to address issues of sexual violence, such as the task force let by Wayne MacKay at SMU.
Hacker group Anonymous organized protests outside of Halifax district RCMP offices to demand justice for sexual assault victim Rehtaeh Parsons.
StudentsNS released a report in the past month examining perceptions and misunderstandings surrounding what constitutes consent during a sexual act.
Recently, the province’s Department of Community Services announced two new chairwomen for the Nova Scotia’s first sexual violence strategy, a three-year strategy, which will focus on prevention and resources for victims.
As a result of the recent occurrences, growing interest in rape culture, and a widespread misunderstanding of what constitutes consent, the team at UNews has decided to put together a series of articles discussing rape culture and why consent matters.
Over the next week UNews will be publishing one article a day examining topics surrounding consent and rape culture beginning with a timeline of some of the most discussed events involving rape culture and universities over the past three years.