Texas State Sen. Kirk Watson recently filed Senate Bill 967, which aims to define consent and close loopholes that have stopped sexual assault victims from getting justice, according to USA Today College.
— Senator Kirk Watson (@KirkPWatson) February 21, 2017
The bill breaks sexual assault down to its most basic definition: If the other person can’t consent, it’s sexual assault. And it explains that if a person is unconscious, physically unable to resist, incapable of assessing the act and/or unaware that the sexual assault is occurring, then they’re not consenting, according to USA Today College.
Watson also filed SB 970, which requires “an affirmative consent standard across all institutions of higher education,” according to a news release. That means that it’s not enough if a person doesn’t say “no” to a sexual encounter—they also have to say “yes.”
Chris Kaisler, director of public policy for the Texas Association Against Texas Assault, hit that nail on the head when he said in the news release that this legislation “demands that we abandon outdated thinking about rape. Only when the law acknowledges survivors’ real experiences of trauma, coercion, and stigma can it truly support survivors in their healing and recovery.”
Hopefully, this legislation will make it easier for students in Texas to report sexual assault and know their cases will be taken seriously.
Oh, and we’re definitely fans of Kirk Watson. Look at this guy’s shirt.
— Senator Kirk Watson (@KirkPWatson) February 24, 2017