Facts and Stats
To help raise awareness and educate our communities, the RICADV compiles facts and statistics about domestic violence in Rhode Island. View our current fact sheets below, and check back often for updates and additions.
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.
The RICADV’s network of member agencies provide comprehensive emergency and support services to victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual violence, and stalking. 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
- Blackstone Valley Advocacy Center
- Domestic Violence Resource Center of South County
- Elizabeth Buffum Chace Center (Kent County and Cranston)
- Women’s Resource Center (Newport and Bristol Counties)
Affiliate Member Agencies
- Center for Southeast Asians
- Crossroads Rhode Island
- Family Service of Rhode Island
- Progreso Latino
- YWCA Rhode Island
In 2017, 8,758 individual victims of domestic violence received services from our member agencies, including:
- Emergency shelter and transitional housing
- 24-hour crisis hotline support
- Support groups
- Court advocacy
- Immigration advocacy
- Law enforcement advocacy
The Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence:
- maintains an annual budget of over $3.4 million, with 70% passed through to our member agencies to fund victim services and primary prevention programs.
- works closely with Sisters Overcoming Abusive Relationships (SOAR), its task force of survivors of domestic violence, to promote, advocate for, and work towards the elimination of domestic violence.
- has been a leader in getting domestic violence legislation passed in RI and making systems such as child protection, criminal justice, public benefits, and housing more responsive to the needs of survivors.
- is nationally recognized for its prevention efforts, including its work engaging men and youth-serving organizations, and is one of only 10 states funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) DELTA FOCUS grant.
- values strategic communications in order to create social change, focusing on initiatives that include statewide public awareness campaigns, a nationally-recognized online guide for journalists, and innovative strategies using new and traditional media.
The presence of a firearm in a domestic violence situation greatly increases the likelihood of homicide for victims and bystanders. In 2017, the Rhode Island General Assembly passed the Protect RI Families Act, which requires abusers convicted of domestic violence misdemeanors or subject to restraining orders to surrender their firearms.1
—Between 2006 and 2015, 54 people lost their lives to domestic violence homicides in Rhode Island. Though a similar number of homicide incidents involved stabbing as those that involved firearms, considerably more victims were killed with firearms (19 victims, or 42%) than by stabbing (14 victims, or 31%).2
—Rhode Island domestic violence police incident reports for the year 2015 show that 452 suspects were in possession of a firearm at the time of their arrest.3
—When a firearm is present in a domestic violence situation, the risk of homicide for women is five times greater than when a firearm is not present.4
—Women in the U.S. are 11 times more likely to be killed with a firearm than women in other developed countries.5
—Abusers having access to firearms is also dangerous for bystanders. Mass shootings are defined as incidents in which four or more people are killed (not including the shooter). An analysis of gun violence crimes from 2009-2016 found that 54% of mass shootings were related to domestic or family violence.6
- 25% of the mass shooting fatalities were children. In mass shootings related to domestic or family violence, over 40% of the fatalities were children.7
- In nearly half (42%) of the mass shootings, the shooter exhibited warning signs before the shooting indicating that they posed a danger to themselves or others. These red flags included acts, attempted acts, or threats of violence towards oneself or others; violations of protective orders; or evidence of ongoing substance abuse.8
1 R.I. Gen. Laws § 11-47-5(a-b), 8-8.1-3(a)(4), (c).
2 Domestic Violence Homicides in Rhode Island, 2006-2015. RICADV. February 2016.
3 Rhode Island Supreme Court Domestic Violence Training and Monitoring Unit. 2015.
4 Campbell, J. C., Webster, D., et al. (2003). Risk factors for femicide in abusive relationships: Results from a multisite case control study. American Journal of Public Health,93(7), 1089-1097.
5 Hemenway, D. and Richardson, E.G. (2011). Homicide, suicide, and unintentional firearm fatality: Comparing the United States with other high-income countries, 2003. Journal of Trauma, 70, 238-42.
6 Everytown for Gun Safety. (2017). Mass shootings in the United States: 2009-2016. Everytown Research. Retrieved from https://everytownresearch.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Analysis_of_Mass_Shooting_033117.pdf.
Revenge Porn, also known as Nonconsensual Pornography (NCP), is defined as the distribution of sexually graphic images of individuals without their consent. It includes both images originally obtained without consent (e.g., hidden cameras, hacking phones or online accounts, or recording sexual assaults), as well as images consensually obtained within the context of an intimate relationship.1
The following 38 states, along with Washington, D.C., have adopted legislation to criminalize Revenge Porn/NCP. Rhode Island is not yet among them:
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.
A single act of posting explicit images can cause significant harm to a victim, impacting their mental health, relationships, and career. Images are often posted alongside personally-identifying information about the victim, which often leads to additional harassment and threats from third parties.
According to a study by the Cyber Civil Rights Initiative:2
- 51% of victims of Revenge Porn/NCP have had suicidal thoughts due to being victimized.
- 93% of victims said they have suffered significant emotional distress due to being a victim.
- 82% said they suffered significant impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning due to being a victim.
- 42% sought out psychological services due to being a victim.
- 90% of victims were women.
Revenge Porn/NCP should be against the law in Rhode Island, in the same way that domestic violence and other related forms of violence and abuse have already been criminalized.
Revenge Porn/NCP is frequently associated with the following crimes:3
- Domestic violence: Revenge Porn/NCP can be used as an abusive tactic of power and control in a domestic violence situation. Many people who are controlling and abusive during a relationship are also aggressive and destructive after a relationship. Revenge Porn/NCP images or videos may have been originally created within the context of an abusive relationship as a result of coercion by the abuser.
- Sexual assault: Revenge Porn/NCPimages or videos may document a sexual assault or its aftermath.
- Harassment, stalking, and cyberstalking: Many Revenge Porn/NCP offenders harass victims through unwelcome texts, emails, phone calls, letters, visits to the victim’s home or workplace, contact with the victim’s friends, family, or colleagues, etc. The offender’s persistent conduct online and/or offline may cause the victim to fear for their safety.
1 FAQ. (2017). Cyber Civil Rights Initiative. Retrieved from https://www.cybercivilrights.org/faqs.
2 End Revenge Porn. (2014). Revenge Porn Statistics. Retrieved from https://www.cybercivilrights.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/RPStatistics.pdf.
3 Related Laws. (2017). Cyber Civil Rights Initiative. Retrieved from https://www.cybercivilrights.org/related-laws.