Counselors from ChildLinK’s Child Advocacy Centre (CAC) sensitized 33 Guyana Industrial Training Centre (GITC) on sexual assault on April 17, 2018. This activity was conducted in observance of Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM). This year’s theme is “Embrace Your Voice”.
The students were sensitized on the legal definition of sexual assault, the difference between sexual assault and sexual abuse, what constitutes consent, and ways in which they can prevent themselves from committing the act. The students were given several practical scenarios and asked to give their views on each scenario. As a result, the session was engaging and interactive. The counselors were able to provide clarification on various misconceptions that students have concerning sexual assault and how the laws of Guyana defines sexual assault and sexual abuse.
The Sexual Offences Act 2010 Section 4 Subsection 1 defines sexual assault as when an accused:
a) touches another person on a sexual way;
b) causes the complainant (alleged victim) to touch the accused in a sexual way;
c) causes the complainant to touch a third party in a sexual way;
d) otherwise indecently assaults the complainant within the meaning of any other law.
SAAM is observed during the month of April annually. SAAM was first observed in 2001. Former US President Barack Obama was the first US President to declare April as Sexual Assault Awareness Month.