It's ok to say no this Valentine's Day

Evesham Journal: Kate Wilson from Worcestershire Health & Care NHS Trust Kate Wilson from Worcestershire Health & Care NHS Trust

WITH Valentine’s Day here once again a sexual health campaign reminding young people in Worcestershire sex is a matter of consent has been launched.

The campaign by the Worcestershire Health and Care Trust’s Sexual Health Education Unit is advising people saying no to sex does not make them ‘frigid’ or a ‘tease’.

A key message of the campaign – which is being run alongside Worcester University and colleges in the area – is that feeling confident and in control is empowering and that coercing someone to do something against their will is abusive.

Kate Wilson from the Health and Care Trust said both men and women could feel under pressure to have sex.

“There can be assumptions that pressure is only on young women to have sex, however young men find themselves under pressure to perform,” she said.

“Communication is crucial - sometimes people struggle to say what they do and don’t want from a relationship and find themselves in situations they later regret.

“This campaign is a reminder that it is OK to say “No” at any stage and still be respected. Even if someone has had sex previously, nobody should feel obliged to do something they’re not entirely comfortable with.”

Although many young people may feel their peers are all sexually active, studies show the majority of people do not lose their virginity until they are 16 or older. Alcohol abuse may also give a false sense of sexual confidence, leading to behaviour which may later be regretted.

For more information follow the Twitter hashtag #oktosayno, visit the Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust Facebook page or visit www.playinitsafe.co.uk

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