Online survey finds majority of Australian men want to know if their partners are consenting


More than three quarters of Australian women and a third of men say they want to understand their partners’ consent before engaging in sexual activity.

The survey, conducted by the University of NSW’s Institute of Psychology and the Australian Institute of Criminology, also found the vast majority of men (78 per cent) would be comfortable disclosing their sexual partners’ identity to a partner if asked, while women (71 per cent), men (69 per cent).

“A substantial proportion of Australians have a concern about the privacy and safety of their partners when engaging in intimate sexual activity, especially if they are not willing to disclose their partner’s identity to anyone,” the report said.

“We can do more to help prevent the spread of HIV and other STIs and we can do so without compromising our sexual freedoms.”

Key points:About one-third of Australians would like to know whether their partners consent to sex, but are unsure about what to doWhen men say ‘I’m not sure’, they’re often more likely to be more concerned about privacyThe survey found 77 per cent of men, 74 per cent women said they wanted to know their partners were consenting to sex without a condom, and 59 per cent said they’d be comfortable revealing their partner to someone.

“Many men and women are aware that their partners may not be consenting but don’t know what to say or do to make sure they are,” the researchers said.

“We are keen to understand the level of agreement among Australians about this issue.”

In response to the survey, the Department of Health published the following statement:”The Health Department encourages Australians to be sensitive to others and the privacy of their partner.

This includes consenting adults who have engaged in sexual activities with a partner and who do not want their partner or partners to know.”

Health departments take all reports of sexual health and safety very seriously and provide ongoing training to staff and the general public on the issues of consent, sexual health, safe sex and safe sexual relationships.