VIDEO RELEASE: Legislation Aimed at the Prevention of Sexual Assault Passes Education Committee

Posted on 02 Jul 2015 for representative Kevin de León

Consent Education for High School Students SACRAMENTO – On Wednesday, July 1, 2015, the California Assembly Education Committee passed Senate Bill 695 (De León/Jackson) unanimously on a bipartisan vote of 6-0. Under the legislation, health courses, which are a condition of graduation for a majority of California high school students, will provide instruction on affirmative consent, sexual harassment, assault, violence, and the importance of developing positive and healthy relationships. Avni Parikh, Co-founder of Students for Sexual Respect, a group seeking to create a consent-based culture, said, “It’s no longer acceptable to say ‘boys will be boys’ as an excuse for rape or dating violence. We need to broaden our perspective beyond college campuses.” Between 1995-2013, the highest rate of rape and sexual assault victimizations affected females between the ages of 18-24. [1] Joint-Author Senate Pro Tem Kevin de León said, “The statistics show we are not doing nearly enough. We can and must educate the youth of our state, especially our young men, about affirmative consent and healthy relationships to change behavior toward young women.” Joint-author Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson (D-Santa Barbara), chair of the California Legislative Women’s Caucus, said, “If we want to prevent sexual assault, it’s important that we start early, before our young people reach adulthood. This bill will ensure that discussions about healthy relationships and consent are taking place in high school, with young women and young men, so we can establish boundaries of acceptable behavior, change attitudes and behaviors, and prevent sexual assault before it occurs. Ultimately, this will help create safer and healthier educational environments for all our students.” SB 695 was inspired by the first-in-the-nation “Yes Means Yes” Bill, SB 967 (video), which requires college campuses to adopt consistent survivor-centered sexual assault response policies and protocols that follow best practices and professional standards for prevention, access to resources, and fair adjudication proceedings. This measure has received bipartisan support and passed off the Senate floor with a vote of 39-0. It will next be heard by the Assembly Appropriations Committee. ### Student survivors are available for questions via phone. SB 695 Bill Background Sheet HD video via dropbox email 1) Special Report: Rape and Sexual Assault Victimization Among College-Age Females, 1995-2013, U.S. Department of Justice, Langton, Lynn and Sinozich, Sofi. Claire Conlon