By Serena Evans, NCEDSV
The prevalence of sexual violence in our state, and the lifelong consequences for victim-survivors, makes our focus on violence prevention a significant and critical part of our work. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), strengthening economic supports for women and families is one of the most effective means of prevention for sexual violence. 
For low-income and economically disadvantaged individuals, lack of economic resources affects their ability to alter their environment or to live self-reliantly. In effect, this can make them dependent on others for their survival, therefore placing them at risk for violence.  To address the prevalence of sexual violence in Nevada and focus on a relatively untraditional means of prevention, Serena Evans, NCEDSV Policy Coordinator, has convened a statewide Economic Justice Workgroup. The task force focuses on supporting efforts to increase access to economic justice and pathways to financial sustainability in Nevada.
Evans has recruited 15 statewide and regional organizations to participate in the workgroup. Workgroup participants hail from different backgrounds such as housing, workers’ rights, LGBTQIA+ rights, and culturally specific organizations (to highlight some), with very few participating organizations being self-defined anti-violence organizations.
The workgroup brings together cross-sector, cross-organizational collaborators actively engaging in advocacy work that increases economic opportunities and decreases economic barriers. With workgroup participants coming from different backgrounds, NCEDSV has used this opportunity to educate our members on the intersections of sexual violence prevention and their essential role in the anti-violence movement in Nevada.
The workgroup currently convenes bi-monthly to discuss the current state of economic advocacy within the state, and identify ways to uplift work already being done, or service gaps where more advocacy needs to be focused. The efforts of the workgroup build off of the research and recommendations laid out in NCEDSV’s report Economic Justice as a Tool for Sexual Violence Prevention in Nevada.
To learn more, you can watch NCEDSV’s recorded forum series on Economic Justice as a Tool for Sexual Violence Prevention in Nevada, examining each of these focus areas in depth. Click here to access the recorded forum series.