For some women, being in an abusive relationship is like being in prison -- and a new short film is perfectly illustrating that point. On Tuesday, the Allstate Foundation launched their new Purple Purse campaign with a one-minute short titled "America's Largest Prison Break."
In the video, a woman is trapped in a cramped prison cell, as verbal abuse from her unseen spouse plays overhead."Never disrespect me... This is my house... I pay for the roof over your head, I pay for all the food..." Desperate, she collects a stash of money she's been secretly storing inside her cell, just enough to finally break free.
The clip ends with a powerful message: "The number one reason domestic violence victims can't 'just leave' is because they're being abused financially."
Financial abuse has long been an aspect of domestic abuse that isn't as widely discussed, in addition to verbal and emotional abuse.
Actress Kerry Washington, who has been an ambassador of the Purple Purse fund for three years, said of the new campaign in an interview with People:
Financial abuse is such an invisible weapon... We can see black eyes and we can see bruising and I think, we think a lot about the emotional abuse, and all of those things are valid, but to know that financial abuse is the number one reason why women stay and why they can't walk away -- it matters so much to be able to do something about that because it unlocks the solutions in the other areas as well.
In conjunction to the video, the Purple Purse fund has also launched a social media campaign with the hashtag #FreeToWalk, which aims to spread awareness about the many obstacles that stand in the way of victims getting out abusive relationships.
To learn more about the Purple Purse fund and the #FreeToWalk campaign, visit purplepurse.com.