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The contains offences that protect everyone against all forms of sexual assault (section 271); sexual assault with a weapon, threats to a third party or causing bodily harm (section 272); and aggravated sexual assault (section 273), voyeurism (section 162), obscenity (section 163) and trafficking in persons (section 279.01).
Under a law that went into effect yesterday as part of the federal government's omnibus crime bill passed in February, a teen under the age of 16 cannot consent to sex with an adult five or more years older.
The bill is intended to target sexual predators, but many youth advocates say that by focusing on age, the new law will confuse teens, make their sexual activities more clandestine and expose them to other risks, including abuse, early pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections.
The age of consent, also known as the "age of protection", refers to the age at which a young person can legally consent to sexual activity.
All sexual activity without consent, regardless of age, is a criminal offence.
Sexual activity can also be considered exploitative based on the nature and circumstances of the relationship, e.g., the young person's age, the age difference between the young person and their partner, how the relationship developed (quickly, secretly, or over the Internet) and how the partner may have controlled or influenced the young person.
It was raised from 14 years on May 1, 2008 by the .
However, the age of consent is 18 years where the sexual activity "exploits" the young person -- when it involves prostitution, pornography or occurs in a relationship of authority, trust or dependency (e.g., with a teacher, coach or babysitter).