What is Consent?

To put it simply, consent is an active agreement between two or more people engaging in a sexual act. It ensures that all parties are into everything that is happening.

  • Consent is mandatory.
  • Consent is enthusiastic.
  • Consent is an ongoing process, and needs to be asked for not once but whenever necessary.
  • Consent should never be assumed or coerced. 
  • There are many factors that can jeopardize or complicate consent, including the consumption of drugs or alcohol, power dynamics, or violence.
  • Consent can be revoked at any time.

OCAD University is committed to fostering a campus culture of consent, and a shared responsibility to anti-oppression and intersectionality. As such, we’ve put together some resources to help develop consent culture on our campus.


Videos by Integrated Media graduate Nikole Hidalgo McGregor.

Upstander Training

OCAD U staff from our Health & Wellness Centre and staff from the Safety & Security Services team have taken Train-the-Trainer workshops at Western University’s Upstander Training program which teaches sexual violence intervention skills. This program includes robust discussions of consent, and aims to help campuses develop a culture of looking out for one-another. Staff are now able to facilitate this training to the OCAD U community. Learn more by contacting hwc@ocadu.ca.

Consent and Sexual Violence Prevention Training

Staff from OCAD U’s Health & Wellness Centre are able to deliver training on consent and/or sexual violence prevention to any member or group of members among the OCAD U community. Please contact the Centre at hwc@ocadu.ca to inquire.

Create Consent zine

The Create Consent zine is a student-created publication that was led and supported by
OCAD University’s Sexual Violence Prevention & Awareness Working Group. It outlines contexts in which consent may be considered, factors that jeopardize consent, and ways to communicate and develop healthy messages of consent. Importantly, Create Consent helps us understand that consent goes beyond sexuality, and that consent culture can be applied to all the ways we relate to one another. 

Ongoing Education Opportunities

Periodically OCAD U offers workshops and information sessions for students on preventing sexual violence. A recent example is one held jointly by OCAD U’s Health & Wellness Centre and the Safety & Security Services team with White Ribbon, an organization dedicated to the prevention of gender-based violence and sexual violence. Themes of consent, healthy relationships, toxic masculinity, allyship, equity, and the transformation of social norms were explored. A workshop was also held recently for OCAD U staff on creating LGTBQ2SIA inclusive environments. To learn more about upcoming education opportunities, visit our Events calendar.  

Support for Survivors of Sexual Violence

Our Guide for Student Survivors of Sexual Violence is available online and in print to provide OCAD U students who are survivors of sexual or gender-based violence information on how to receive support such as counselling services and academic accommodations, and options for reporting, regardless of whether or not they choose to disclose their experience to anyone at OCAD U. Student survivors are supported through the Health & Wellness Centre.

Disclosures of Sexual Violence

Our guide, Responding to Student Disclosures of Sexual Violence, provides staff, faculty, student peers and other campus leaders direction on how to respond effectively to a student disclosure of sexual or gender-based violence, and how to provide student survivors with accurate, timely and supportive referrals.


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