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  • NO MORE Silence

    NO MORE Silence

    When we stay silent, domestic violence thrives. This October, National Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM), we are calling on our communities to break the silence. Each of us must make it our business to speak up when we see or hear something troubling and to have conversations with friends, family, colleagues, youth, and others in our lives. Whether it be in our workplaces, schools, places of worship, or other community spaces, we can support survivors and their children by raising awareness of the issue and creating environments that do not tolerate domestic violence.
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  • Purple Purse Challenge

    Purple Purse Challenge

    The RICADV is excited to be participating in the Allstate Foundation Purple Purse Challenge this October! The Purple Purse Challenge is an annual friendly fundraising competition held during Domestic Violence Awareness Month, where nonprofit organizations serving victims and survivors of domestic violence engage their supporters and communities to help raise funds. The 2017 Purple Purse Challenge starts Monday, October 2 at 12 p.m. Stay tuned for details!
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  • RI Men's Summit

    RI Men's Summit

    Rhode Island men, join us for the 4th Annual Men's Summit on November 9, an event designed for and led by men who want to prevent domestic violence in our communities. Most men are not violent, but many remain silent in the face of other men’s violence. This November, take a stand with Ten Men to help break the silence. We ask our supporters to invite the men in their lives to get involved! To learn more and to register, visit
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  • State House Victories!

    State House Victories!

    This September, the Rhode Island General Assembly reconvened for a special session to review the bills they left unfinished in June - and we have great news! Several of the RICADV's priority bills have passed! 2017 legislative victories include disarming dangerous abusers and guaranteeing earned sick and safe days for RI employees.
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  • Latino Communities

    Latino Communities

    Oprima el botón “Read More” para acceder a nuestro sitio web en Español.

    At the RICADV, we engage Latino communities in Rhode Island to raise awareness about domestic violence, the services and resources that are available in our state, and the need for all of us to get involved to end abuse. Access our website in Spanish by clicking the "Read More" button below or En Español at the top of this page.

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The Newsroom

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Latest News

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday, October 2, 2017

Letter to the Editor: When we stay silent, domestic violence thrives

By Deborah DeBare, Executive Director, Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence

[Providence, RI – October 2, 2017] When we stay silent, domestic violence thrives. With 1 in 4 Rhode Islanders experiencing domestic violence in their lifetimes, and nearly 1 in 10 Rhode Island high schoolers reporting they have already experienced physical dating violence, we all know loved ones, neighbors, and friends who will be or have been impacted by abuse.

This October, National Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM), we are calling on our communities to break the silence. Each of us must make it our business to speak up when we see or hear something troubling and to have conversations with friends, family, colleagues, youth, and others in our lives.

. . .

Read More: Latest News

SpeakerThe 2011 General Assembly session ended on July 1.  This session was full of activity as the RICADV fought to preserve our remaining state funding for the services provided by our six member agencies while simultaneously pursuing a powerful legislative agenda aimed at protecting the lives of Rhode Island victims of domestic violence. 

While the session ended with the RICADV and its member agencies facing a 10% cut in state funding, our legislative agenda received broad-based support resulting in successful passage of a bill to make cyberstalking a domestic violence crime and the House and Senate passage of legislation to make strangulation assaults a felony.

Court Advocacy and Children Who Witness Programs Face Decreased Funding

Rhode Island human service agencies have been deeply impacted during these difficult economic times by significant funding cuts, specifically cuts to the state Community Service Grants.  For the RICADV’s six member agencies, these cuts have meant a 60% loss in funding since 2006 to two major programs: the Court Advocacy Program and Children Who Witness Program.

This year funding continued to decline, as the General Assembly cut the funding for these programs by an additional 10%.  This means that our Court Advocacy Program, which last year saw a rise of 7% in domestic violence criminal cases and almost 5% in restraining orders, will face additional loss.

This news was unfortunate, as the RICADV and its member agencies may be forced to make adjustments in programs in order to absorb this additional funding decline.

RICADV Legislative Agenda:  Protecting Lives

Last year, Rhode Island saw the loss of 13 lives to domestic violence, the highest ever on record.  When the General Assembly session opened in January, the RICADV launched a legislative platform designed to strengthen Rhode Island laws by providing the criminal justice system with further tools to prevent relationships from escalating to this level of violence.


In late May 2011, the Rhode Island General Assembly enacted RICADV’s first legislative priority, a bill which adds the charge of Cyberstalking to the Domestic Violence Prevention Act.

The passage of this bill (pdfH.5264-Coderre /pdfS.334-Goodwin) allows a charge of cyberstalking or cyberharassment to be prosecuted as a domestic violence offense, which affords a victim of domestic violence enhanced protections including an automatic no-contact order issued upon arrest and the assistance of a victim advocate.  The use of technology in abusive relationships to intimate and threaten is increasing rapidly.  The enactment of this law will ensure that Rhode Island domestic violence laws keep up with this increase.  

After passing the Senate unanimously and the House by a vote of 67-1, Governor Chaffee signed this bill into law on June 15, 2011.  

The RICADV would like to thank the General Assembly leadership and supporters and to extend a special thanks to our longstanding champions on domestic violence issues, Senator Maryellen Goodwin and House Speaker Pro Tempore Elaine Coderre for their sponsorship of this legislation.

To read more about the Cyberstalking Bill:  
pdfCyberstalking fact sheet


The second 2011 RICADV legislative priority was a bill to make an assault where the victim is strangled a felony. Unfortunately this bill was not enacted into law this session.

This legislation (pdfH.5087-DaSilva /pdfS.217-DeVall) addresses one of the top domestic violence lethality factors, as strangulation assaults are a sign of increasing violence in a relationship.  A domestic violence victim who has been strangled at some point in the relationship is nine times more likely to be killed.  Despite their lethal nature, Rhode Island law currently charges these offenses as misdemeanor simple assaults.  

Score BoardThe Rhode Island Senate passed the Senate version unanimously and the House of Representatives passed the House version by a vote of 59-11.  Unfortunately, the General Assembly did not pass reconciliation language before the close of the 2011 session, so that the bill did not become a law this year. 

Enactment would be an important step toward decreasing the number of domestic violence fatalities in Rhode Island.  Looking forward, the RICADV will build off of this year’s success in the House and Senate and place this legislation as a top priority next year in an effort to turn this bill into law.

To read more about the Strangulation Bill:
pdfStrangulation fact sheet


The final bill in the RICADV’s “Protecting Lives” campaign would clarify provisions in the Domestic Violence Prevention Act by calling for enhanced penalties for repeat domestic violence petty misdemeanor charges. This bill did not pass this year.

This bill (pdfH.5261-Coderre /pdfS.70-Crowley) aims to capture the domestic violence cycle of abuse by holding abusers accountable for their repeat actions and threatening behavior.  Domestic disorderly conduct, the most prevalent domestic violence petty misdemeanor, was the second most common charge last year with over 2,000 charges, a 13% increase from 2009.  This increase has been consistent and the number of charges has doubled in the last five years.

The Clarification Bill was heard successfully in both the House and Senate Judiciary Committees and had heavy support in both chambers.  Passage of this bill is an important step toward strengthening the Rhode Island domestic violence laws.  Looking forward, this legislation will continue to be a priority and the RICADV plans to work with our allies over the summer and fall to build on the existing support in the General Assembly for this bill.

To read more about the Clarification Bill:
pdfClarification fact sheet

Looking Forward to 2012—Safety for Children

Since the release of its report pdfSafety for Children in 2010, the RICADV and its taskforce of survivors, SOAR, have been working on the report’s recommendations to make the Rhode Island custody and visitation system safer for victims of domestic violence and their children.  

One of the recommendations in the report is to recommend changes to the Rhode Island General Laws to create clear custody standards and guidelines to be followed in domestic violence cases.  

The RICADV plans to form a committee to address this recommendation.  This committee will be made up of members of the court and legal community, advocates, and experts in the field of domestic violence and child custody.

Communications Center

  • Domestic Violence Awareness Month +

    We conduct statewide public awareness campaigns during October, national Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM), as a way to break the silence and stigma around domestic violence, raise up the voices and experiences of survivors, provide information about help and resources, and educate and engage our communities.
    Read More
  • Online Guide for Journalists +

    We work with statewide and local media to increase awareness about domestic violence, the services and resources available for people impacted by abuse, and the ways the community can get involved to help. Visit the RICADV's Online Guide for Journalists for best practices in covering domestic violence.
    Read More
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Site Search

2017 Purple Purse Challenge

2017 Purple Purse Challenge

The RICADV is participating in the Allstate Foundation Purple Purse Challenge this October, a friendly fundraising competition held during Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The 2017 Purple Purse Challenge starts Monday, October 2 at 12 p.m. Stay tuned for details!


  • Be Tech Safe
  • News & Events
  • AmazonSmile

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Your abuser may monitor your Internet use and may be able to view your computer activity.

To immediately leave our site and redirect to a different site, click on the box to the bottom-right of our website or hit the ESC (Escape) key on the upper-left of your keyboard.

If you feel that your computer is not secure, use a computer in another location that your abuser cannot access.

For more information and tips for staying safe online and on your devices, click "Read More" to visit the Privacy & Technology section of our website.

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Looking to get involved in the movement to end domestic violence?

Sign up to join our mailing list, and receive mail and emails from the RICADV!

Visit our Calendar of Events to find local and online events.

AmazonSmile-webWhat is AmazonSmile?

AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support the RICADV every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at, you'll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to the RICADV.

On your first visit to AmazonSmile, you need to select a charitable organization to receive donations from eligible purchases before you begin shopping. Choose the RI Coalition Against Domestic Violence to support us. Amazon will remember your selection, and then every eligible purchase you make on AmazonSmile will result in a donation.

About the RICADV

The Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence (RICADV) is an organization dedicated to ending domestic violence. Formed in 1979, the organization provides support to its member agencies, strives to create justice for victims, and provides leadership on the issue of domestic violence in Rhode Island.

Member Agencies

The RICADV's network of member agencies provide comprehensive services to victims, including emergency shelter, support groups, counseling, and assistance with the legal system. For more information about these organizations and services, call the statewide Helpline at 800-494-8100 or click here.


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