Brown students love sex and free t-shirts, and today’s third annual Consent Day paired the two for an afternoon of games and education around sexual consent.
Various booths—ranging from condom balloon throws to dildo ring tosses—were organized on the Main Green by the Brown Sexual Assault Task Force (SATF) to “provide a fun, positive, empowering, and encouraging (“yes means yes!”) space for the entire Brown community to learn and talk about consent,” according to the Facebook event.
“Consent Day is one of our highest profile events,” SATF co-president Devon Reynolds ’14 said. “Basically this is a really fun way to get people to learn about sexual consent. What we really want to emphasize here—and we have this on the pledge that we have people sign—is that ‘no means no’ isn’t enough. It’s not enough to not rape someone …. We really want people to understand that there is a difference between getting a ‘yes’ and not getting a ‘no.’”
From 3 to 6 p.m., students could receive a free neon green “Consensual Sex is Hot” shirt by participating in each of the six tables and signing a pledge. All games incorporated education around healthy, consensual sex. For example, the condom dart throw and water balloon toss both incorporated trivia about sex, and the dildo ring toss was combined with a sexual boundaries exercise.
The Vend-E table showcased the school’s condom dispensers and taught participants how to use them, and at the Health-Ed table, students put on beer goggles and had to perform tasks such as walking in a straight line or unwrapping a condom (“which is really difficult,” Reynolds noted).
In the Bystander Intervention activity, participants worked through hypothetical scenarios.
Last year, Consent Day handed out 250 free shirts, and this year’s event gave out 300 due to its positive response. Funding and support were provided by Health Education (which provided the t-shirts), the Office of the Vice President for Campus Life, Office of Institutional Diversity, Office of Student Life and the Coalition Against Relationship Abuse.
“From what I’ve seen last year and this year, people are really excited about [Consent Day],” Reynolds said. “They enjoy the activities, they love the t-shirts, and there’s always general disappointment when the t-shirts run out at the end of the day. I hope we can keep doing this. It seems people really love it, and we love to bring the community together over this issue.”