#Reflect campaign focuses on consent
Posted on 30th November 2023
Essex Police has teamed up with pubs and bars, across the county, to launch a new arm of our perpetrator focussed #Reflect campaign around the issue of consent.
This new phase of the campaign, funded by Southend and Thurrock Domestic Abuse Partnership (SETDAB), asks people to consider their own actions and behaviour, and will be reflected on beer mats, in the restrooms of bars and pubs and on digital screens throughout shopping areas, from 28 November 2023.
We know that consent underpins all forms of sexual violence and sexual abuse, and the majority of sexual offences happen in the home.
Roger Hirst, Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex, said: “We are pleased to build on the good work of the #Reflect campaign which raises awareness of the way sexual abuse can manifest in relationships and the importance of consent.
“We hope by encouraging people to seek support they need, we can make a real, lasting change which will reduce violence against women and girls, one of our policing priorities to get crime down.”
While sexual attacks by strangers do happen, the majority of sexual violence is perpetrated by someone the victim knows. This would include someone they are in a romantic or sexual relationship with, someone they are friends with, a work colleague, or someone in their family.
Chief Supt. Claire Talbot, force tactical lead for Violence Against Women and Girls, said: “Whether you are in a married or civil partnership, are dating someone new or you meet someone on a night out, consent still needs to be given for any form of sexual activity. Anyone has the right to say no, change their mind or withdraw consent at any time.”
Sarah Griffin from The Change Project which supports those who want to change their behaviour, said: “The Change Project is committed to supporting people to have healthy relationships with others and this campaign gets to the heart of a subject that is not talked about widely enough. We hope this campaign encourages people to reach out for help to address aspects of their behaviour they may not be comfortable with.”
Through this campaign activity, we want to educate and inform people about the importance of consent through various scenarios as well as directing any victims to Synergy Essex for specialist support, or to report any incidents directly to Essex Police.