PHOENIX — Arizona Rep. Juan Mendez has proposed a law that would redefine the meaning of sexual consent on college campuses.
“It’s a move away from this idea that silence is consent,” Mendez said. “Just because someone is not saying no, doesn’t mean that they are saying yes.”
House Bill 2474 would require Arizona’s colleges and universities to adopt a “yes means yes” sexual consent policy for its students.
“The universities are supporting this and researching their own policies around seeking consent,” Mendez said.
“This piece of legislation is just trying to expand the university’s success across the whole state so that all students can feel protected.”
If the bill passes, Mendez believed there would be a significant drop in the number of sexual assaults on college campuses.
“I would like to avoid sexual assault,” he said. “I would like to stop it from happening and the best way to do that is to encourage people to get positive consent.
“No relationship should go from ‘yes’ to a first date to a sexual encounter that both people are not in agreement of.”
The bill would set clear boundaries on what sexual consent does and does not mean, Mendez said.