Sex and the Law

In Western Australia it is against the law to have heterosexual OR homosexual sex if either partner is under 16 years of age even if you both give consent. Also, someone who is under the influence of alcohol or drugs is not legally able to give their consent to sex.

Having sex is anything that involves:

  •  a penis touching a vagina, anus or mouth
  •  an object or another part of the body coming into contact with the vagina or anus
  •  touching a person in a sexual way, such as touching another person's vagina, penis, anus or breasts.

You always have the right to say NO to sex.

In Western Australia it is also illegal for someone to have sex with a 16 or 17 year old if they are in a position of care or authority over them (such as a sports coach, teacher or foster carer).


When involved in sexual behaviours, everyone needs to provide consent. When a person gives consent it means that they are clearly and freely agreeing to the sexual activities that are happening or are about to happen. Consent cannot be given when someone is:

  • drunk or under the influence of drugs
  • asleep
  • unconscious
  • not mentally capable of understanding what is going on
  • feeling pressures, forced or threatened
  • under the age of 16 (in WA).

If someone is not able or willing to give consent then the sexual activity being performed is considered sexual assault and is against the law.

You always have the right to say NO to sex

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