What Consent Is 

Consent is when one person voluntarily acknowledges and is in agreement to participate in a sexual activity. All participants involved in sexual activity must obtain and give consent before every sexual act. Consent is an informed, voluntary, and active agreement to engage in sexual activity.

Consent must be:

  • Informed: The individuals understand the sexual activity they are agreeing to;.
  • Voluntary: The individuals agree to the activity freely and without coercion, intimidation, or force; and
    • Active: The individuals communicate their agreement to engage in the activity through affirmative words and/or actions. Consent cannot be assumed.
    • Revocable: Consent given on one occasion doesn’t justify consent for future sexual activity. Consent may be given and withdrawn at any point, regardless of the relationship

What Consent Is Not

The following does not constitute consent:

  • Silence
  • Passivity
  • Lack of protest or resistance
  • The absence of “No”

Under Iowa law, the following people are unable to give consent:

  • Persons who are asleep or unconscious
  • Persons who are incapacitated due to the influence of drugs, alcohol, or medication
  • Persons who are unable to communicate consent due to a mental or physical condition

Policy: Title IX Sexual Harassment, Sexual Assault, Dating Violence, Domestic Violence, and Stalking