Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Crisis: Economics and Domestic Violence

The Allstate Foundation just released a national poll that found Americans link the term "economic abuse" to negative Wall Street forecasts or irresponsible spending, rather than domestic violence. The aim of the poll was to underscore the need for education around economic abuse and foster a greater understanding of the challenges facing domestic violence survivors.

The Allstate Foundation 2009 National Poll, "Crisis: Economics and Domestic Violence," serves as a resource in our efforts to help assist survivors and combat domestic violence. The full survey findings are available at www.ClickToEmpower.org.

Additional key poll findings include:

  • More than three-quarters of Americans (76 percent) believe the poor economy has made it more difficult for victims of domestic violence, and two-thirds (66 percent) believe it has caused an increase in domestic violence.
  • 44 percent say the most difficult barrier to leaving an abusive relationship is financial security.
  • Almost 60 percent of Americans don't see a connection between harassing a partner at work and economic abuse, even if it may cost the victim their job and ultimately limiting income.

While the poll's statistics are disheartening, The Allstate Foundation is working on helping those directly impacted by economic abuse. The Allstate Foundation, in partnership with the National Network to End Domestic Violence, recently launched a redesigned Economic Empowerment Curriculum.

The curriculum includes financial tools and information designed to enable survivors of domestic abuse to fully understand their financial circumstances, as well as engage in short-term and long-term planning (e.g., budgeting tools, step-by-step planners, tips, etc.) to accomplish their personal goals. The curriculum is available by request on ClickToEmpower.org, and will soon be available for electronic download along with e-learning modules.

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