Justifications for sexual intercourse without consent in Belgium 2016

Consent is a notion that has been widely discussed and continues to receive considerable attention. According to this survey regarding gender-based violence in Belgium, multiple justifications for sexual intercourse without consent are found in respondents. The most shared justification relates to being drunk or using drugs, in other words when a person is not in full control of themselves. Voluntarily going home with someone or wearing revealing clothes were also valid justifications for 15 percent of respondents.

Meanwhile, 57 percent of respondents declared that sexual intercourse without consent was justified under no circumstances. Consenting to sexual activity means fully accepting, without constraint or threat, to participate in the sexual activity in question. A person can stop or refuse a sexual act at any moment. Consent can be expressed in words, gestures, behaviors, and others. Furthermore, the person must be legally capable to give consent, which is not the case for children, people with certain health conditions or consume certain medicines.

Opinions in Belgium on gender-based violence in 2016: circumstances where sexual intercourse without consent is deemed justified?*

Share of respondents
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Source

Release date

November 2016

Region

Belgium

Survey time period

June 4, 2016 to June 13, 2016

Number of respondents

1,020 respondents

Age group

15 years and older

Method of interview

Computer-assisted personal interviews (CAPI)

Supplementary notes

* The question was originally phrased by the source as follows: "Some people believe that having sexual intercourse without consent may be justified in certain situations. Do you think this applies to the following circumstances?''.

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Statistics on "Crime in Belgium"

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