Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Economic Abuse: What Is It?

A new poll conducted by The Allstate Foundation and The National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) reveals 44% of people surveyed say the most difficult barrier to leaving an abusive relationship is financial security, yet 86% of Americans do not associate “economic abuse” with domestic violence.

Money can be one method an abuser uses to control and manipulate someone. Abusers may demand control of their partner’s earnings or government benefit payments, or deny her access to money in order to make her wholly dependent on him. Sometimes this financially controlling behavior takes the form of stealing or punishing someone when they spend money. Other times the abuser may directly prevent their partner from being independently financially secure by destroying the victim’s credit rating by running up debt by failing to make payments.

Domestic violence is about an abuser’s need for power over his victim, whether that takes the form of bruises or creating financial instability so crippling she cannot leave him. When women consider leaving their abusers, lack of financial resources can be a major obstacle . Working towards financial empowerment for women who have left or are preparing to leave their abusers is one of the ways that domestic violence advocates can help victims of domestic violence.

The NNEDV and The Allstate Foundation created a Financial Empowerment Curriculum as a way to help domestic violence survivors navigate the challenges of economic abuse as well as the added stress of the recession. For more information, check out their website, ClicktoEmpower . For more information, look at this factsheet on economic abuse or check out the Financial Information/Economic Empowerment section of our website for national resources that can help.

If you or someone you know is experiencing abuse of any kind, can help. Ask us a question through our website and we will respond within 3 business days.


1 comment:

  1. Yes,I remember when I had to leave to save my life. I had 5.00 to my name. I had an old car that the steering wheel was held on by a nail. I had no friends or family. The only place I could go was my job 85 miles away. I worked weekens as a nurse at this facility. They gave me a room to live in. I worked every shift to save up money to get me an apartment. It has been 23 years sine that happened. I still remember it as if it was yesterday. I hope there are facilities and money available to help women that are in the same situation I was in. Thank YOU