What are sex crimes?

When people do the right thing, sex can be a really nice experience and an important part of your life.

But sometimes, people can do sexual things that the law says are wrong. These are called sex crimes. If these things happen to you, you might feel sad or scared.

These law says these things are wrong:

  • When somebody kisses you, touches your private parts, makes you touch their private parts or has sex with you when you don’t want them to. This is called sexual assault, and sometimes it is called rape.
  • Somebody doing sexual things with you when you are too young to do sexual things with them.
  • When somebody in your family (for example your mum, dad, step mum, step dad, brother, sister, uncle, aunty) does sexual things to you. This is called incest.
  • Somebody saying rude or hurtful things lots of times about your gender, or sexual things. Somebody asking you lots of times to date them or have sex with them when already said no. These things are called sexual harassment.
  • Somebody showing you their private parts or touching their own private parts (masturbating ) in front of you when you don’t want them to.
  • Somebody sending you photos of sexual things or people’s private parts.
  • Somebody sending photos of you doing sexual things or your private parts to other people when you did not say it was OK.
  • A person asking you to pay money to have sex with them if you are under 18.
  • A person paying you money to have sex with them if you are under 18.

Sex crimes are never your fault. Often people who do sex crimes tell you to keep it a secret. You do not have to keep these kinds of secrets. You can keep telling adults you trust until somebody helps you.

If any of these things are happening to you, you can talk to an adult you trust. You can also contact the Centres Against Sexual Assault, Kids Helpline or Lifeline for help. You can also talk to the police when you are ready.