Consent

Consent is demonstrated through mutually understandable words and/or actions that indicate a willingness to engage in specific sexual activity. Consent must be knowing and voluntary (freely given). To give consent, a person must be awake, of legal age (16 in Rhode Island), and have the capacity to reasonably understand the nature of her/his actions. A person who is physically or mentally incapacitated cannot give consent. A person may not use physical force, verbal threats, intimidation, or coercion as a method for obtaining consent. Consent may be withdrawn by either person at any time, and once withdrawal of consent is expressed, the sexual activity must stop. Consent is automatically withdrawn if the person who had provided it becomes incapacitated.