Tel +61 3 5831 2343

Fax +61 3 5831 1996

Sexual Assault Crisis Line

Toll Free 1800 112 343

HOME : ABOUT SEXUAL ASSAULT : What is Sexual Assault? Print

What is Sexual Assault?

Sexual assault is an act of a sexual nature that is unwanted or intimidating; ranging from sexual harassment, being forced to watch pornography, coerced sexual activity including incest, to rape and rape with physical assault and threat to life.  It is a very personal and destructive crime, and the impacts on the victims and their loved ones can be felt at many levels.

Sexual assault is a violation of basic human rights and therefore
is a crime against the individual and society.

Sexual Harassment is any form of unwanted, unwelcome or uninvited sexual behaviour, which is or might be offensive, humiliating, intimidating or embarrassing. Sexual harassment takes many forms, including wolf whistles, leering, sexual innuendo, comments or other unwanted sexual attention. For more information visit the resources page of this website.

Rape/sexual assault is defined as penetration of the vagina or anus with the penis, other body part or foreign object without consent. It also includes forced oral sex.

Sibling Sexual Abuse is sexual contact between siblings who are of a different age, size, strength or developmental level.  Like all forms of sexual abuse, sibling abuse (sibling incest) is an abuse of power, where the more powerful sibling abuses the less powerful. For more information visit the resources page of this website.

Marriage/De facto rape is when one intimate partner pressures or forces the other partner into having sex. This is rape, even though the person is a spouse or regular sexual partner.

Date/Acquaintance rape. Date rape is when a person you are dating sexually assaults you. You may be in an ongoing relationship, or it may be someone you have dated only once or twice. Acquaintance rape is when a friend or someone you have met, but don't know very well, sexually assaults you.

Child sexual assault is any act of a sexual nature towards a child by someone older than the child or in a position of power.

Incest is sexual assault by a family member. This may be a parent, sibling, step-parent, uncle or any other family member.