Spanish Government Introduces “Yes Means Yes’ Sexual Consent Law

Spain is looking to add their name to the ever-growing list of countries with “yes means yes” sexual consent laws, in an attempt to remove any ambiguity in sexual assault cases.

Under the new law proposed by Spain’s socialist government, individuals engaging in sexual acts would have to give explicit consent to their partner. Anything less than a verbal “yes”–even silence–would be considered rape if the new law were to pass.

The move is in response to the public’s outrage over the not-guilty verdict in the recent la manada rape case that involved five men allegedly gang-raping a woman at the Running of the Bulls festival in Pamplona.

Video of the alleged gang-rape showed the woman being passive and silent. The presiding judges viewed this as consent and dropped the charges from rape down to the lesser crime of sexual assault.

Existing Spanish law states that rape must involve violence or intimidation. Even though the accused five were given sentences of nine years, massive demonstrations still cropped up around the country over the ruling.

“If a woman does not expressly say yes, then everything else is no,” stated Carmen Calvo Poyato, Spain’s deputy prime minister in support of the bill.

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