Four teenagers, 3 girls and 1 boy, dressed in warm winter attire, are hanging out smiling in front of a brightly colored graffiti wall. One girl is carrying a skateboard.

“Rape is not use of force, it is lack of consent.” 
Katherine Ariano, SANE Program Manager, Duke University Health System


Throughout this website you will see a variety of terms being used. While there are variations, especially in research articles and state laws, below are some general definitions for some of the key terms.


This website is especially designed to provide resources for youth ages 12-17 and for the adults who care for them. For these purposes, the term youth will generally refer to people in this age group.

“Assume you don’t have consent until you do. If you’re waiting for it to be taken away, how do you know you had it to begin with?”  -Saunie Schuster, Partner, The NCHERM Group, LLC

“Consent to one act is not consent to all acts.” – Unknown 

Sexual Harassment

Comments and/or behaviors of a sexual nature that are non-consensual and without physical contact. Examples include catcalling, sexist jokes, showing unwanted pornography, and sending unwanted sexually graphic texts and photographs.



Non-consensual penetration (no matter how slight) of any bodily orifice by a body part or object. Rape includes oral, anal, and vaginal penetration by a sex organ, tongue, or finger of another person. 


Sexual Assault/Sexual Violence

An umbrella term for all forms of non-consensual sexual contact or attempted sexual contact that includes rape, unwanted kissing, groping of the breasts, buttocks, vaginal/groin area, and other intimate body parts. Sexual assault/sexual violence also includes forcing one to sexually assault or rape another person.  

It’s unfortunate. Title IX is rather simple: don’t discriminate on the basis of sex.” –Birch Bayh, Author, Title IX of the Higher Education Act of 1965

Title IX

The following definition comes directly from the US Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights

Title IX is a federal civil rights law passed as part of the Education Amendments of 1972. Title IX requires schools to take steps to prevent and remedy two forms of sex-based harassment:  sexual harassment (including sexual violence) and gender-based harassment. Sexual harassment is unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature. It includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, nonverbal, or physical conduct of a sexual nature. Sexual violence is a form of sexual harassment. Sexual violence, as OCR uses the term, refers to physical sexual acts perpetrated against a person’s will or where a person is incapable of giving consent. A number of different acts fall into the category of sexual violence, including rape, sexual assault, sexual battery, sexual abuse, and sexual coercion.

Title IX also prohibits gender-based harassment, which is unwelcome conduct based on a student’s sex, harassing conduct based on a student’s failure to conform to sex stereotypes.

Sex-based harassment can be carried out by school employees, other students, and third parties. All students can experience sex-based harassment, including male and female students, LGBT students, students with disabilities, and students of different races, national origins, and ages. Title IX protects all students from sex-based harassment, regardless of the sex of the parties, including when they are members of the same sex.

Sex-based harassment creates a hostile environment if the conduct is sufficiently serious that it denies or limits a student’s ability to participate in or benefit from the school’s program. When a school knows or reasonably should know of possible sex-based harassment, it must take immediate and appropriate steps to investigate or otherwise determine what occurred. If an investigation reveals that the harassment created a hostile environment, the school must take prompt and effective steps reasonably calculated to end the harassment, eliminate the hostile environment, prevent its recurrence, and, as appropriate, remedy its effects.


Laws can be quite complicated. The following links provide straight forward language around various laws related to sexual assault/rape, privacy, and mandated reporting. The link to the official South Carolina Sex Crimes Statutes is also below. Please contact us for additional assistance.


South Carolina Age of Consent & Statutory Rape Laws

South Carolina Sexual Assault Laws

South Carolina Mandated Reporting Laws

South Carolina Children’s Law Center

South Carolina Privacy Laws Impacting Survivors of Crime

Official South Carolina Sex Crimes Statutes