What can you do with a bottle of nail polish? Well, if it’s purple, you can help countless women, men, and children affected by domestic violence.
Many celebrities, from Grammy award-winning singers to Miss America, already have as part of the #PutTheNailInIt campaign from Safe Horizon, the United States' largest non-profit victim services agency — and they hope you will, too. By donating to Safe Horizon, painting their ring fingernail purple, and then sharing a picture of themselves and their nail with the hashtag #PutTheNailInIt on social media, these influential people have taken a public vow to end domestic violence.
Because domestic violence harms one in four women and one in seven men in their lifetime, and over three million children witness this violence in their homes every year, the campaign wants people of all genders, ages, and races to take the vow to end it. Domestic violence is an epidemic, but it is often an all too silent one. The majority of Americans (60 percent) know a victim of domestic violence, but that same majority (67 percent) have never had a conversation about domestic violence with their friends. Perhaps even more upsetting, three out of four parents have never talked to their children about domestic violence.
With the #PutTheNailInIt campaign, Safe Horizon hopes to spark a national conversation about domestic violence to show current victims and survivors they're not alone and that Safe Horizon provides just that — a safe space. "Domestic violence has no place in our society. We shouldn't have to wait until there is a famous case in the news or a fatal incident to let victims know there is support available," said Safe Horizon CEO Ariel Zwang in a press release.
Besides shelter, Safe Horizon also provides domestic abuse survivors with advocacy, legal representation, hotline services, counseling, and economic empowerment. "At Safe Horizon, we know how to help stop violence in victims' lives, and the generous donations that we receive from this campaign will enable us to deepen effective services for tens of thousands," Zwang added.
But they can't do it alone. That's why they've recruited some amazing celebrities to spread the message that domestic violence ends with us.
Tamron Hall, Co-Host of NBC News’ TODAY Show and Anchor of MSNBC Live
"I've made no secret about how my family was personally affected by domestic violence. My sister's memory is important to me and I want to uplift her name to help those families and victims who have felt alone. Since opening up and sharing our story I've been approached by countless people who have taken a stand. If we stand shoulder-to-shoulder, we create a wall of protection — a safe place ... a safe horizon."
Dave Navarro, Musician and "Ink Master" Host
"When my mother's life was taken by a domestic abuser, I unfortunately was a witness to how domestic violence can not only destroy the victim's life, but the lives of friends and family members ... [That's] the reason I've taken Safe Horizon's #PutTheNailinIt vow. Together, let's spread awareness and put an end to domestic violence."
Kyra Sedgwick, Actress
"As a woman and a mother of a young woman, the prevalence of domestic violence horrifies me. Domestic violence is a secret, insidious and rampant epidemic that is so often kept shamefully behind closed doors. I think the thing people need the most is a safe place to land and that's what Safe Horizon is all about."
Michael Bolton, GRAMMY Award-Winning Singer
"Being raised primarily by a single mother and being a father of three daughters gave me great empathy for the safety of women and children. When I learned how many women and children are victims of the intolerable cycle of violence, to a large extent domestic violence, I knew I had to do something... Today, I am honored to take the vow to end domestic violence. Men, including fathers and sons, must be part of the solution. I challenge all men to join me in taking Safe Horizon's #PutTheNailinIt vow."
Kira Kazantsev, Miss America 2015 and Domestic Violence Survivor
"When I began competing in the Miss America competition, I was told to choose a platform. As a result, I made a deeply personal choice that would not only heal myself but let other survivors know they are not alone. Together, our voices became louder. I am so honored to work with Safe Horizon and take the #PutTheNailinIt vow to not only bring awareness to domestic violence but to take action and support survivors, like myself, in their time of need."
While these celebrities have used their powerful influence for good, you don't need to have millions of social media followers to make an impact.
Adding your voice — no matter how many people hear it — to the conversation about domestic violence is a crucial step to ending it.
"[D]omestic violence thrives in silence," Rachel Goldsmith, Safe Horizon's assistant vice president of violence shelters told A Plus via email. "But a lot of people sometimes do nothing at all because they don't know what they can do to help... Even if one victim or survivor sees your left ring fingernail painted purple, that lets them know they have support from at least one person." She believes one small statement can, in fact, make a huge difference.
"So donate, paint your nail, or engage with #PutTheNailinIt on social media," she added. "Anyone can take this important vow to end domestic violence."