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Terrible assaults emphasise the need for educational campaigns surrounding consent.

25 September 2018

Statement by Sean Sherlock TD
Spokesperson on Justice, Children and Youth Affairs

Labour spokesperson on Justice, and TD for Cork East, Seán Sherlock has called on Minister Mitchell O'Connor to lay out a timeline for the delivery of promised compulsory consent classes in Irish Universities. This call follows reporting today of three incidents of rape of students in Cork in recent weeks.

Commenting today Deputy Sherlock said:

“The reports today of the rape of three students in Cork since the beginning of the academic year has horrified many. I think that these terrible assaults emphasise the need for a step up in educational campaigns surrounding consent.

“We have seen in recent years through reports on rates of sexual assault on campuses that there is a significant deficit in understanding of consent among many students.

“The time for discussing such initiatives has passed and I am calling on the Minister for Higher Education to lay out a timeline for the introduction of compulsory consent classes on campuses around the country. She expressed great concern about the findings of the NUIG report back in August and pledged to bring consent classes on stream immediately.

“Such classes will be of little comfort to the victims of sexual violence which have already occurred but they could contribute to a reduction in sexual-based violence on campuses and I personally feel that anything which can make campuses safer should be rolled out immediately.”