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  • Love is Respect!

    Love is Respect!

    February is national Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month. For information and ways to get involved, visit our Teen Center, or head over to loveisrespect.org, a leading national resource. We all have the ability to help someone experiencing dating violence. No one can do everything, but everyone can do something. Together, our collective actions can make a big difference. How will you play your part?
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  • Ten Men

    Ten Men

    Ten Men is an integral part of the RICADV's statewide plan to prevent intimate partner violence in Rhode Island. By engaging RI men as community leaders to become more knowledgeable, visible, and mobilized, we aim to change the harmful gender norms that perpetuate men’s violence against women and girls. #TenMenRI
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  • New Resource for RI

    New Resource for RI

    Now more than ever, people are becoming aware of and outraged by the harmful impacts of domestic violence. With primary prevention, we can stop the violence before it happens in the first place, before people ever become victims or perpetrators of abuse. To learn more, check out this new resource created by the RICADV!
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  • "The Way Home" Charm

    Alex and Ani has partnered with the RICADV and the National Network To End Domestic Violence to launch the CHARITY BY DESIGN charm bangle “The Way Home.” When you purchase your bracelets through the RICADV, 50% of the proceeds go toward supporting our work to end domestic violence in RI. You can purchase bracelets in person at the RICADV’s office in Warwick Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
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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 proactively engage Latino communities and work to raise awareness about the help that is available through our member agencies. Each agency offers diverse programs and services that 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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Statement Regarding the Arraignment of Elaine Yates

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

[Providence, RI – January 18, 2017] In 1985, when Elaine Yates and her two daughters disappeared from their Warwick home, no laws against domestic violence existed in Rhode Island. It was not until 1988 that legislation went into effect making domestic violence a crime.

Prior to 1988, the landscape was much different for someone who was being battered in Rhode Island. Back then, it was not illegal for husbands to abuse their wives, and victims of abuse had no legal recourse. If a woman was being abused, she could not turn to law enforcement or the criminal justice system for help. There were very few options for safety, while crisis services and legal protections were practically nonexistent. It was not uncommon for victims of domestic violence to leave their homes with their children in order to stay safe, often going out of state and even changing their identities to protect themselves and their loved ones. At that time, advocates would often help battered women and their children flee to “underground” shelters, made up of a grassroots network of people’s homes and confidential community spaces. The stark reality was that the potential legal ramifications for victims who fled with their children were far outweighed by the risks and danger they might face if they stayed.

. . .

Read More: Latest News

Bills aimed at reducing domestic violence

By Philip Marcelo
Journal State House Bureau
The Providence Journal, February 22, 2011

PROVIDENCE –– Following a year in which Rhode Island saw its highest number of domestic violence-related murders, four bills are being introduced into the state legislature this year to better protect victims and their children.

The bills, three of which have been submitted in previous years, include increased penalties for strangulation, disorderly conduct and Internet crimes such as cyberstalking.

The Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence hopes the package of bills, which it has made its top legislative priority this year, will send a strong message to repeat offenders. With 13 domestic violence-related deaths, 2010 was the state’s deadliest year on record for domestic violence, according to the coalition.

“If we are serious about ending domestic violence, then we have to be serious about stopping domestic violence. And that means putting in good tools for police and prosecutors for holding batterers accountable and we believe that these bills will give our justice system those tools,” said Zulma Garcia, the coalition’s policy director.

The first bill –– H5261 and S70 –– is aimed at disorderly conduct offenders and has already generated opposition from the American Civil Liberties Union. The proposal calls for stiffer penalties for repeat petty misdemeanor charges when they are charged under the state’s Domestic Violence Prevention Act.

State law currently calls for mandatory jail time of up to one year after two misdemeanor offenses; a third offense constitutes a felony with a mandatory prison sentence up to 10 years. The coalition-backed proposal would make petty misdemeanors subject to the same enhanced penalties if classified as a domestic violence crime.

Garcia says the proposal is targeted specifically at disorderly conduct, which is a petty misdemeanor that was the second-most-common domestic violence charge in 2010, with 2,077 charges, an increase of 13 percent from 2009, according to the coalition. (Disorderly conduct is considered a domestic violence crime when it is committed by a family or household member against another.)

But Steven Brown, executive director of the Rhode Island affiliate of the American Civil Liberties Union, says applying the same tough standard to a petty misdemeanor is inappropriate.

“Petty misdemeanors are designated the least serious of all criminal offenses. Three of these minor offenses simply should not be treated the same as a major offense,” he said in written testimony submitted to the House Judiciary Committee last week.

A second bill –– H5087–– would make choking and strangling, even if it does not cause serious injury, a felony assault. (Strangulation is currently charged as a misdemeanor simple assault.) According to the coalition, a domestic violence victim who has been strangled is nine times more likely to be killed than one who has not.

A third bill –– H5264 –– is being introduced for the first time this year and would add cyberstalking and cyberharrassment to the 14 crimes that can be charged as domestic violence offenses under the state’s domestic violence law.

By including such internet-related crimes under the state’s Domestic Violence Prevention Act, victims can be afforded extra protections, including an automatic no-contact order against the offender, and penalty enhancement for repeat offenses, according to the coalition.

The final bill focuses on child custody and visitation rights for parents, establishing a protocol for state Family Court to use in divorces and separation where there is a history of domestic abuse or violence. That bill has yet to be introduced this year but was submitted last year.

pmarcelo@projo.com

Communications Center

  • 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.
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  • 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
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Site Search

Teen Center

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Abusive relationships impact young people, too. Nearly 1 in 10 Rhode Island high schoolers has already experienced physical dating violence. Visit our Teen Center to find resources and information for young people in RI.

Spotlight

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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 http://smile.amazon.com, you'll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, 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.

Contact

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

T (401) 467-9940
F (401) 467-9943