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Economic Justice Summit 2019: Coming Together to Advance Survivors’ Economic Security

July 26, 2019

On June 19-20, 2019, the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) hosted its third annual Economic Justice Summit in Houston, Texas. Advocates, state domestic violence coalitions, and national experts came together to discuss the intersection of domestic violence and economic security. This year, themes included centering the experiences of survivors living on the margins, engaging employers and the financial sector, housing advocacy, and economic empowerment in the gig economy.

Venita Ray of Positive Women’s Network (L) poses with Ashley Slye, NNEDV’s #PositivelySafe Manager (R), during a break from their presentations on the intersection of HIV/AIDS and economic justice

Cynthia Hess of the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR) delivered a presentation on the report “Dreams Deferred: A Survey on the Impact of Intimate Partner Violence on Survivors’ Education, Careers, and Economic Security.” The respondents to this survey revealed some troubling trends:

  • 74% said their abuser took money from them
  • 82% said their abuser damaged, destroyed, or took their personal property
  • Two thirds said their partner’s behavior negatively affected their educational and job training opportunities
  • 83% said their partner disrupted their ability to work

These tactics of financial abuse have a direct correlation to survivors’ safety: 73% stayed with an abusive partner longer because of financial problems.

The cumulative financial impact can be staggering: the lifetime costs of IPV—including the costs of related health problems, lost productivity, and criminal justice costs—are estimated at $103,767 for women and $23,414 for men.

Addressing financial abuse can be difficult for any survivor, but individuals who are immigrants, undocumented, have limited English proficiency, or those who belong to historically marginalized communities often encounter many additional obstacles to achieving safety and financial self-sufficiency. The session “Providing Inclusive, Holistic Financial Empowerment Services to Marginalized Survivors” considers incorporating self-care practices into financial planning  to help anyone feeling overwhelmed by the systemic and personal barriers that may keep survivor’s from their life goals. Some practical tips included talking about and writing goals, making a date with your finances, creating a safety plan when tensions rise, and checking credit scores.

To learn more about the 2019 Economic Justice Summit, view the Twitter Moment, #EJSummit19 on Instagram, or download session materials below.

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Tuesday, June 18th         

4:30 pm            Registration

5:00 pm           Welcome Reception

Presenters:

  • Kim Pentico, National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV)
  • Twila Clark, Houston Astros Foundation
  • Leslie Contreras Schwartz, Houston Poet Laureate

Wednesday, June 19th    

9:00 am           Opening and Welcome

Presenters:

  • Latifa Lyles, NNEDV
  • Gloria Terry, Texas Council on Family Violence (TCFV)
  • Paul Mifsud, Major League Baseball & NNEDV Board Member

9:30 am          General Session

Economic Justice: Living in the Margins

Presenters:

  • Pronita Gupta, Center for Law and Social Policy (moderator)
  • Laura Perez-Boston, Workers Defense Project
  • Jessica Howton, Tahirih Justice Center
  • Venita Ray, Positive Women’s Network

Materials:

10:45 am         Breakout Sessions

(1) Leveraging Local Experts to Strengthen your Economic Justice Program

Presenters:

  • Madeline Gregory, The Allstate Foundation (moderator)
  • Rebecca Christ, Fresh Start Women’s Foundation
  • Jessica Marcum Jacobs, Indiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence
  • Mary Trinity, New Jersey Coalition to End Domestic Violence

(2) Engaging Employers in Building Safe & Supportive Workplaces

Presenters:

  • Sarah Gonzalez Bocinski, Futures Without Violence
  • Aaron Polkey, Futures Without Violence

Materials:

(3) Providing Inclusive, Holistic Financial Empowerment Services to Marginalized Survivors

Presenters:

  • Shari Bloomberg, Rachel Coalition at Jewish Family Service of MetroWest
  • Carolyn Fenton, SAFE in Hunterdon
  • Tonya McKinley, Safe + Sound Somerset
  • Andrea Mendez, Hope & Safety

Materials:

12:15 pm         Working Lunch and Panel

Credit Unions & Unbanked Immigrants, Establishing Affordable Banking & Banking Partnerships

Presenters:

  • Jaimie Miller, Iowa Credit Union Foundation
  • Zebulon Beilke-McCallum, Iowa Coalition Against Domestic Violence
  • Paige Diner, Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund
  • Holly Melzer, People’s Place, Inc., SAFE Program

Materials:

1:45 pm           Breakout Sessions

(1) Engaging Systems of Finance in Economic Justice

Presenters:

  • Tia Subramanian, Criterion Institute

Materials:

(2) Working Hard for the Money: Considerations for Survivors’ Safety, Privacy, and Economic Empowerment in the Gig Economy

Presenters:

  • Kara Rhodebeck, NNEDV
  • Corbin Streett, NNEDV

Materials:

(3) Texas Economic Justice Initiatives Panel

Presenters:

  • Mona Muro, TCFV (moderator)
  • Vesna Anic, Fort Bend Women’s Center
  • Mona Kafeel, Texas Muslim Women’s Foundation
  • Aly Kramer Jacobs, Houston Area Women’s Center

3:30 pm           Housing Panel

HUD Continuum of Care, Housing Advocacy & Housing Stability Funds

Presenters:

  • Debbie Fox, NNEDV (moderator)
  • Krista Del Gallo, TCFV
  • Talia Kahn-Kravis, Credit Builders Alliance (CBA)
  • Rachna Khare, Daya Houston

Materials:

Thursday, June 20th       

9:15 am           Panel

Creating and Implementing Economic Policy Change

Presenters:

  • Krista Del Gallo, TCFV
  • Mohini Lal, NNEDV
  • Traci Underwood, Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence

11:00 am         Breakout Sessions

(1) Survivor Voices & Compensation

Presenters:

  • Lisa Pous, SAFE (Stop Abuse for Everyone)

Materials:

(2) The Economic Effects of Abuse: Findings from a National Survey

Presenters:

  • Cynthia Hess, Institute for Women’s Policy Research

Materials:

(3) Updates in the Credit Industry: What’s New

Presenters:

  • Melinda Croes, CBA

Materials:

12:30 pm         Working Lunch and Panel

Showing Up: How We See, Speak, and Disrupt Racial Inequity Facing Survivors of Domestic and Sexual Violence

Presenters:

  • Lisalyn Jacobs, Just Solutions
  • Mona Muro, TCFV

Materials:

2:30 pm        Closing