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Sexual offences cover a wide range of sexual activity prohibited by criminal law including rape and sexual assault. Other behaviours such as voyeurism, exhibitionism, distribution of intimate images and forced involvement in pornographic media may also come within the definition of sexual offences. A sexual offence can occur in the context of family violence.

Terms such as ‘sexual assault’ are sometimes broadly used to refer to a range of behaviours that do not meet the legal definition. We have provided definitions below, which are used in criminal law in Victoria for rape and sexual assault, including what constitutes consent, penetration and sexual touching.

Definitions under Victorian legislation

The definitions below are taken from Victorian legislation, under the Crimes Act 1958 (Vic) (pdf 2.4mb) (The Act). You can find the full definitions (including all subsections) in The Act, which also defines the words used in these sections.


Assistance at Monash University

Safer Community Unit

The Safer Community Unit understands there are difficult decisions to be made and provides a safe place where options can be explored.

The Safer Community Unit will provide an efficient and coordinated response to ensure the best available service to victims and other involved persons, to mitigate any ongoing risk.

Information and support provided by the Safer Community Unit includes:

  • advice and referrals for your ongoing safety and wellbeing needs
  • access to medical care, with your agreement
  • preservation of evidence, with your agreement
  • facilitation of access and transport to a Centre Against Sexual Assault, with your agreement
  • transport to the Victorian Police Sex Offence and Child Abuse Investigation Team, with your agreement.

University counselling service

A South East Centre Against Sexual Assault counsellor is available at the University counselling service. They provide staff and students who are victims of sexual assault with comprehensive support and intervention to address their needs.

Counselling service

Counselling service will provide counselling and assistance to persons impacted by the behaviour.

Telephone counselling

Available to students and staff after-hours for those who can't access face-to-face counselling.

Security service

Immediate attendance to a location on campus to provide assistance, advice, support and referral.

Medical and health service

Medical and health service will provide medical consultations and specialist referrals. Individual doctors specialise in women's or men's health.

Community legal services

Free legal advice for the community.

Additional help and information