Sexual Offences and Obscene Publications Bill

Closed 4 Feb 2019

Opened 10 Dec 2018

Feedback Updated 20 Jun 2019

We Asked

The Department of Home Affairs consulted on a draft Sexual Offences and Obscene Publications Bill. The purpose of the Bill being to modernise and consolidate the legislation relating to sexual offences, indecent advertisements and obscene publications and address important matters such as:  

  • updating the definition of consent to ensure that it provides appropriate and clear protection for victims
  • reviewing sentences for offences
  • addressing image-based abuse
  • modernising the legislation relating to pornography and obscene publications
  • the pardoning and removal of criminal records relating to historic consensual homosexual offences

You Said

In total, 204 responses were received via the Consultation Hub and a further 7 responses were received by letter/email of which the vast majority were from private individuals. 

The responses were positive in their views and also were very helpful in terms of their answers or suggestions in relation to questions asked, or issues to be addressed.

Please see full feedback document for more detailed analysis.

We Did

Analysed results were submitted to the Department with proposals for appropriate improvements to the Bill. The Department duly considered and approved improvements to the Bill; these were then made by the Drafters in the Attorney General’s Chambers. The Bill was authorised for printing and introduction into the House of Keys by the Council of Ministers and will receive its First Reading on Tuesday 25 June 2019.

Overview

The Department of Home Affairs (DHA) is consulting on a draft Sexual Offences and Obscene Publications Bill 2018.

The purpose of the Bill is to modernise and consolidate the legislation and address important matters such as:  

  • updating the definition of consent to ensure that it provides appropriate and clear protection for victims
  • reviewing sentences for offences
  • addressing image-based abuse
  • modernising the legislation relating to pornography and obscene publications and
  • the pardoning and removal of criminal records relating to historic consensual homosexual offences

Why We Are Consulting

The DHA is seeking views on a number of aspects of the legislation to ensure it provides an appropriate framework for preventing, protecting from, and prosecuting sexual offences. 

What Happens Next

The Department is grateful for your views on this important piece of social legislation. It will analyse the responses and use them to assist in finalising the Bill. Subject to the authority of the Council of Ministers, it is hoped to introduce this Bill into the House of Keys within the next few months.

Areas

  • All Areas

Audiences

  • Anyone from any background

Interests

  • Legislation
  • Criminal Justice