Domestic violence is a pattern of abuse within a relationship that escalates over time. It consists of abusive and coercive behaviors that one person uses to establish and maintain power and control over their partner.
Domestic violence can happen to anyone, regardless of age, race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, culture, income or education level, occupation, community, or socioeconomic status.
Under Rhode Island law, domestic violence is defined as a crime committed by one family or household member against another. Family or household members can include spouses, dating partners, parents and their adult children, siblings, step-relatives, in-laws, or roommates.
Resources available in Rhode Island:
R.I. Coalition Against Domestic Violence
The Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence (RICADV) is an organization dedicated to ending domestic violence. The RICADV was formed in 1979 to support and assist the domestic violence agencies in Rhode Island. The organization provides leadership to its member agencies, strives to create justice for victims, and raises awareness on the issue of domestic violence in Rhode Island.
The RICADV’s network of member agencies provides comprehensive emergency and support services to victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual violence, and stalking. Member agency services include 24-hour hotline support, emergency shelter, support groups, counseling, and assistance with the legal system.
The RICADV's full member agencies are organizations whose primary purpose is to end domestic violence and provide victim services. Affiliate member agencies are organizations whose work includes some programming to address or prevent domestic violence.
Full member agencies
Affiliate member agencies
Blackstone Valley Advocacy Center
(401) 723-3057 – Hotline & Business
P.O. Box 5643, Pawtucket, R.I. 02862
Serving: Central Falls, Cumberland, Lincoln, Pawtucket, Providence, Woonsocket and the northern R.I. community
The Blackstone Valley Advocacy Center has been providing services to victims of domestic violence in the Blackstone Valley area for over two decades. It is their voices, their struggles, and their experiences which guide the work. The nonprofit organization’s mission is to provide comprehensive services to victims of domestic violence and to provide education and awareness on the issue of domestic violence.
Domestic Violence Resource Center of South County
(866) 782-3990 – Hotline
(401) 782-3995 – Business
61 Main Street, Wakefield, R.I. 02879
Serving: Ashaway, Block Island, Bradford, Carolina, Charlestown, East Greenwich, Exeter, Hope, Hope Valley, Hopkinton, Kenyon, Kingston, Narragansett, North Kingstown, Peace Dale, Rockville, Saunderstown, Shannock, Slatersville, Slocum, South Kingstown, Wakefield, West Kingston, Westerly, and Wyoming
The Domestic Violence Resource Center of South County (DVRCSC) is a nonprofit agency that works toward a future free of violence and a community in which each individual shares the responsibility of creating a culture of safety and personal dignity. The DVRCSC works collaboratively to offer safety, support, advocacy, education, and a network of services to the residents of Washington County. The DVRCSC is dedicated to both preventing and responding to domestic violence by working to change the social conditions, actions, and beliefs that perpetuate abuse.
Elizabeth Buffum Chace Center
(401) 738-1700 – Hotline
(401) 738-9700 – Business
821 West Shore Road, Warwick, R.I. 02889 (Drop-in Center)
P.O. Box 9476, Warwick, R.I. 02889
Serving: Coventry, Cranston, East Greenwich, Foster, Johnston, North Providence, Scituate, Warwick, West Greenwich, and West Warwick
The mission of the Elizabeth Buffum Chace Center is to end the perpetration and societal tolerance of interpersonal violence, including all forms of domestic and sexual abuse and, until that is achieved, to provide comprehensive services to victims and education in the community.
Women's Resource Center
(401) 846-5263 – Business
114 Touro Street, Newport, R.I. 02840
624 Main Street, Warren, R.I. 02885
Serving: Barrington, Warren, Bristol, Little Compton, Tiverton, Portsmouth, Middletown, Newport, and Jamestown
The Women’s Resource Center (WRC) serves Newport and Bristol Counties by leading domestic violence prevention through the empowerment of individuals and the community. The agency was founded in 1977 to provide comprehensive domestic violence intervention and prevention services that educate, advocate for, and shelter any individual in need of assistance. Each year, WRC helps women, children, families, men, and the elderly to obtain services they need to secure their physical, mental, emotional, and financial safety from domestic abuse.