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  • Get Off the Bench!

    This October, we launched a new statewide public awareness campaign for Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The campaign featured URI student athletes speaking out against domestic violence and asking their fellow Rhode Islanders to do the same. The campaign could be seen on buses and billboards throughout the state as well as public service announcements on television, radio, and Pandora. Domestic violence impacts all of us, and it will take all of us, together, to end it. How will you get off the bench? How will you play your part?
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  • Member Agencies

    The RICADV's six local domestic violence agencies provide a wide array of services for victims, including 24-hour hotline support, emergency shelter, support groups, counseling services, and assistance with the legal system. For more information about these organizations and services, call the statewide Helpline at 800-494-8100 or click below. If you see or hear someone being hurt, call 911 immediately.

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  • Latino Outreach

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

    At the RICADV, we proactively serve the Latino community, collaborating with Rhode Island businesses to further our reach to those experiencing abuse. During our public awareness campaigns, we have partnered with Telemundo, Providence en Español, and Latina 100.3 FM to help Latino communities know that help is available through our member agencies. Each agency offers diverse programs and services that can include safety planning, court advocacy, shelter, and support groups. Immigration help is also available. 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

Deborah DeBare Recognized for 20 Years of Service as Executive Director of the Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence

A visionary leader, Deborah DeBare has devoted her career to ending domestic violence in Rhode Island

[Providence, RI – November 24, 2015] Times have changed over the last 20 years, but Deborah DeBare’s commitment to ending domestic violence has never wavered. This month, she celebrates her twentieth year serving as Executive Director of the Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence (RICADV).

“For the past 20 years, Deborah DeBare has been an extraordinary leader and visionary advocate on behalf of domestic violence victims throughout Rhode Island,” said Kim A. Gandy, President and CEO of the National Network to End Domestic Violence. “She has built and empowered an impressive statewide coalition that has changed both laws and lives.”

"Deborah DeBare is the heart of RICADV. Her tireless advocacy and unending compassion for families [impacted by domestic violence] is the foundation for their brighter, healthier, safer futures. Congratulations on a distinguished 20 years at the RICADV, and thank you for being a hero to so many Rhode Islanders," said Congressman Jim Langevin.

. . .

Read More: Latest News

red lobster
By Sara Squeglia

“Let’s get food at the Red Lobster, my treat” (Happy Gilmore). Sounds like the opening sentence to every girl’s dream night, right? At least that’s what Florida Judge John Hurley thought when he ruled that 39 year-old Sonja Bray go on a date with her husband, after he shoved her onto a sofa and brutally strangled her in their home earlier this week.

Judge Hurley claimed he usually would not handle a case of domestic violence so lightly, but he believed John Bray’s violent abuse towards his wife was “very, very minor” (source: FL newspaper, Sun Sentinel).\

I’m not sure what seafood Judge Hurley was eating, but strangulation by one’s husband does not sound very minor to me. Especially since victims of strangulation are nine times more likely to be murdered by their partner after the incident occurred.

In the courtroom, Judge Hurley questioned Sonja while her husband was present. He asked, point blank, if she had been hurt or was in fear of her husband. Although Sonja claimed she was not, the arrest affidavit tells a slightly different story. Clearly, Sonja was frightened enough to even call the police in the first place. Not to mention the detailed report she gave of the violent actions he had taken towards her. Regardless of these two blatant pieces of evidence, Judge Hurley decided a romantic dinner date, followed by a few games of bowling would cure all the couple’s problems. 

Watch the video of the questioning and ruling here

Most of us hear of this ruling and ask, what happened? All the evidence was there, why didn’t Sonja’s story sway this judge? The problem lies here: Judge Hurley never stopped to consider the impact on Sonja’s responses if her abuser was present during her testimony. It is no secret that the majority of domestic violence victims denies or remains silent about their abuse out of fear for their own life and safety. However, this MAJOR detail never seemed to cross Judge Hurley’s mind. He simply skimmed over Bray’s case, confirmed he had no prior arrests and concluded that he couldn’t possibly be violent in his home if he was not deviant or violent in public.

Judge Hurley was confident that if Sonja was treated to the date from her dreams, (she had been questioned about her favorite restaurant and date-night activities beforehand), all previous issues would quickly dissolve. He ended the ruling by suggesting Bray really go the extra mile this time and pick up some flowers and a birthday card for his wife. Bray had assaulted his wife on her birthday.

Where, as advocates, do we go from here? We see this case and most of us shake our heads at the absurdity of it. But while we do that, Sonja Bray is most likely sitting at a Red Lobster across the table from her abusive husband, feeling hopeless that even the court system has let her down. And every other victim who reads of this case might start to think twice about contacting authorities for fear of being laughed at in the courtroom. Domestic violence will never end if our legislative allies continue to treat these issues with disrespect. This is a call to action: domestic violence is not a joke. All branches of society must come together and address these very tangible issues if we want to foster a society where every woman is safe from abuse.

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Communications Center

  • Communicating our work to end DV is vital +

    Communicating the work to end domestic violence is vital. Visit our Communications Center and The Newsroom to KNOW MORE. Read More
  • Public Awareness +

    Raising awareness to end domestic violence is part of our mission. Learn how we keep the issue visible in our communities. Read More
  • Handbook for Journalists +

    The media can help break the silence and educate the public. Visit our online guide for journalists covering domestic violence.
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Teen Center

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KNOW MORE: Relationship abuse happens among teens, too. Visit our Teen Center during the launch of Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month in February 2015 for interactive tools!


  • Be Tech Safe
  • News & Events
  • 35 Years of Progress
  • 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
or just want to KNOW MORE?

Visit our Calendar of Events to find a myriad of local and
social media events.

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spotlight image lisaleslie35th Anniversary Celebration

In 2014, the RICADV celebrated 35 years of progress in advocating for victims and holding abusers accountable.

On October 9, during Domestic Violence Awareness Month, we commemorated this milestone with special guest Lisa Leslie, WNBA legend, four-time Olympic gold medalist, and supporter of the national NO MORE campaign against domestic violence.

We thank everyone who has played a part in helping us move our work forward. Together we can end domestic violence.

Visit our 35th anniversary page to watch a special video, view photos of the event (coming soon!), and more.

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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. We were formed in 1979 to support and assist the six domestic violence prevention agencies in Rhode Island. We provide leadership to our member agencies, strive to create justice for victims, and raise awareness on the issue of domestic violence in Rhode Island.

Member Agencies

The RICADV's six local domestic violence agencies provide a wide array of services for victims, including 24-hour hotline support, emergency shelter, support groups, counseling services, 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. If you hear or see someone being hurt, call 911 immediately.


Contact Details

422 Post Road, Suite 102
Warwick, RI 02888-1539

T (401) 467-9940

F (401) 467-9943