Did you know Michigan has some of the toughest consent laws in the nation? Learn this and other facts about sexual assault when Sherry Brockway, director of training and community impact at the YWCA of Kalamazoo, is our guest today on WMUK's WestSouthwest public-affairs show. April is National Sexual Assault Awareness Month. (Press icon to hear the show. For a longer version of the interview, see the end of this post.)
"We talk about consent as saying yes to any type of sexual activity," Brockway tells WMUK's Earlene McMichael. "We do not believe that the lack of no means yes. So, it's actually the verbal yes. And one thing about Michigan law regarding consent, you can take back consent at any time. I think that's important to know."
Brockway says another very important thing for people to know is that individuals under the influence of drugs or alcohol cannot legally give consent for sexual activity in Michigan. Additionally, spouses can be prosecuted for forcing themselves on their mates without their consent.
"Michigan is very progressive in its sexual-assault laws," Brockway says.
"We do recognize marital rape in Michigan. We talk about that a lot in our support groups (at the YWCA) and what it means. But, even in marital relationships, if you do not want any sexual activity, it is against the law for your partner to do that."
WestSouthwest airs Mondays and Thursdays at 9:30 a.m., with a 3:30 rebroadcast.