Family Violence

Family violence is the neglect, physical, sexual, emotional, or psychological abuse of an individual perpetrated by someone with whom they have a familial or romantic relationship.  Millions of American adults are affected by this interpersonal violence each year, 15.5 million children in the United States (U.S.) live in families in which partner violence occurred at least once in the past year, and each year three million children are reported as abused or neglected in the United States with three children dying each day in the U.S. due to abuse or neglect.

This interpersonal violence can affect anyone, and is not exclusive to any one group.  It occurs across all sectors of society, within all ethnic groups, and in both opposite- and same-sex relationships.  Violence in romantic relationships can take place between people who are dating (including teenagers) or people who are in committed long-term partnerships.  When considering children, those under the age of one are the most frequently victimized, though children of any age can be a victim of abuse or neglect.  Children with disabilities are also more highly likely to be victimized.

Furthermore, elder abuse is a growing epidemic in our aging society. According to the Executive Office of Elder Affairs in Massachusetts, “24,978 elder abuse reports were received and there were 7,117 newly confirmed allegations of elder abuse” in the year 2015 alone (Executive Office of Elder Affairs, 2016). Elder abuse can be defined as, “any knowing, intentional or negligent act by a caregiver or any other person that causes harm to a senior. Simply put: it's the mistreatment or neglect of a person 60 years of age or older, and it’s against the law” (Berkshire District Attorney, 2016).

Resource Organizations » Family Violence » Medway

In Massachusetts

Organizations with hotlines

Asian Task Force Against Domestic Violence

Hotline: 617-338-2355

Office: 617-338-2350


Since 1992 the Asian Task Force Against Domestic Violence has worked with area social service organizations, institutions, and community leaders to end family violence and strengthen Asian families and communities. We provide services in Greater Boston and Greater Lowell and offer limited assistance in other cities throughout Massachusetts and New England. Our confidential 24 hour hotline is available for those who have questions, are confused, or are in emergency situations looking for a safe place to stay. Our 24-hour multilingual helpline is often the first point of access to our services. Trained staff advocates and volunteers speak a total of 18 Asian languages and dialects including Vietnamese, Cantonese, Mandarin, Shanghainese, Taiwanese, Khmer, Korean, Japanese, Nepali, Hindi, Bangla, Tagalog, Urdu, Thai, Manipuri, Lao, and Mien.

Casa Myrna Vasquez

SafeLink Hotline: 877-785-2020

Phone: 617-521-0100

Fax: 617-521-0105


The mission of Casa Myrna is to deliver solutions to end domestic and dating violence. The program offers short and long term housing services to women and children as well as pregnant or parenting teenage girls who were victims of abuse. The program offers a variety of support services including counseling, legal advocacy, housing advocacy, and employment and financial planning. The program also conducts education and outreach on domestic violence and healthy relationships on both small and large scales. Today Casa Myrna is the largest provider of shelter and supportive services to survivors of domestic violence in Boston. They offer services in English and Spanish.

D.O.V.E. (Domestic Violence Ended Organization and Hotline

Hotline: 617-471-1234, Hotline: 1-888-314-DOVE (3683)


D.O.V.E. addresses domestic abuse and dating violence. DOVE works specifically with adults, teens, and children who have been abused, emotionally and financially, as well as physically and sexually.  DOVE’s services include crisis intervention, danger assessment and safety planning, supportive counseling, emergency shelter, legal advocacy and representation, and community outreach, education, and training. DOVE remains the only domestic violence shelter and community-based service provider based in Norfolk County, and also serves the greater South Shore. 


Disabled Persons Protection Committee

1-800-426-9009 , 1-888-822-0350 (TTY)


The mission of the Disabled Persons Protection Commission is: To protect adults with disabilities from the abusive acts or omissions of their caregivers through investigation oversight, public awareness and prevention. In cases of suspected physical, emotional and sexual abuse or neglect of a person with a disability, the DPPC:

  • Receives and screens reports of suspected abuse, neglect and deaths through a 24-Hour Hotline

  • Conducts investigations

  • Oversees investigations conducted on DPPC's behalf by other state agencies: Department of Developmental Services (DDS), Department of Mental Health (DMH) and the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC)

  • Ensures that the appropriate protective services are provided when abuse has been substantiated or risk is determined

  • Provides training and education for service providers, law enforcement personnel and the public. And provides assistance to the public in clarifying the presence of abuse and neglect

Elizabeth Freeman Center

Hotline: 866-401-2425

Phone: 413-499-2425

Fax: 413-443-3016

The Elizabeth Freeman Center serves the survivors, significant others, and family members who are experiencing, escaping or suffering the long-term affects of violence as well as children who have witnessed such violence. Their services include: A 24 hour a day, seven day a week emergency response hotline with counselors available to accompany victims to hospitals, police stations and safety; A confidential and secure residential shelter with in-house support services; Individual counseling, and safety planning at EFC sites and off site; Support groups; Economic, housing and general advocacy and assistance; Legal advocacy on-site in the county courts who assist victims to obtain 209A restraining orders and other necessary services. Their services span the entire Berkshire County, are free of charge, confidential, and available in multiple languages.

Massachusetts Office of Victim Assistance

Hotline: 844-878-6682

Office: 617-586-1340


The mission of the Massachusetts Office for Victim Assistance (MOVA) is to advocate for and assist all crime victims, witnesses, their family members and direct victim service providers throughout the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Victims and their families are often traumatized, confused and uncertain about where to turn for help. Victims can receive assistance through MOVA's Service Programs, the SAFEPLAN Program (for victims seeking protection from abuse), and through the Help Directory. The Victim Services Coordinator can provide referrals to appropriate programs, service providers, information, and advocacy organizations to help victims better understand the justice system.

New England Learning Center for Women in Transition

24/7 Crisis Hotline: 413-772-0806, Toll free: 888-249-0806

Main Number: 413-772-0871


As the domestic violence and rape crisis center of Franklin County and the North Quabbin region, NELCWIT’s mission is to work within the community to build safety, justice, and dignity for all. NELCWIT offers services to individuals and children whose lives have been impacted domestic violence or sexual abuse, and assist in prevention and education work to decrease violence in our community. NELCWIT offer services to people of all genders, sexual orientations and abilities. All of NELCWIT’s services are free of charge, do not require health insurance or documentation, and are available in Spanish and English, with other languages offered through an interpretation service.

REACH Beyond Domestic Violence

Hotline: 800-899-4000

Phone: 781-891-0724

Fax: 781-891-3861


REACH is committed to advancing the safety, healing, and empowerment of those who experience domestic or relationship violence, through direct services and education while promoting social justice for individuals and families of all backgrounds. REACH provides shelter and safe homes to survivors and their children who have been traumatized by domestic violence. Comprehensive support services are available to shelter guests, including counseling assistance in obtaining longer-term housing and employment, and legal advocacy.Teens P.A.V.E. the Way is a statewide summit to train teens as peer educators, helping to break the cycle of relationship abuse.


Hotline: 877-785-2020

TTY: 877-521-2601

SafeLink, Casa Myrna's statewide, toll-free, domestic violence hotline, was created in October of 2000 by Casa Myrna Vazquez, with support from the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families (DCF). SafeLink is a critical resource to those affected by domestic violence - women, men, adults, youth, victims of abuse and their family members, friends, and colleagues. Callers to SafeLink receive confidential "help at the end of the line" 24 hours a day, every day of the year. SafeLink's specially trained advocates provide support in English, Spanish, Portuguese, and have access to TTY (877-521-2601) and translation services through on-call specialists at the ATT Language Line. That resource can provide simultaneous interpretation in over 140 languages, giving SafeLink the capacity to respond to most callers in their native language.  Each call is answered by a trained advocate who provides non-judgmental support, assistance with safety planning, and information on appropriate resources.

SafeLink’s state-of-the-art technology allows the advocate answering your call to keep you on the line while you are being connected to a resource in your area, getting you help in just a single call. It is also OK to call SafeLink if you need to talk about your situation or someone else’s – you do not need to be looking for services or a shelter space.

The Network / La Red

Hotline: 617-742-4911, 800-832-1901 (Toll-Free)

Office: 617-695-0877

TTY: 617-227-4911

The Network/La Red is a survivor-led, social justice organization that works to end partner abuse in lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, BDSM, polyamorous, and queer communities. Rooted in anti-oppression principles, their work aims to create a world where all people are free from oppression. They strengthen communities through organizing, education, and the provision of support services.  Survivors, their friends and family can call the Hotline 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to receive emotional support, information,  referrals to resources and assistance in making safety plans.  The Network/La Red also offers support groups.

Organizations without hotlines

Berkshire County Kids' Place & Violence Prevention Center

Phone: 413-499-2800

Berkshire County Kids' Place and Violence Prevention Center, Inc. provides an interdisciplinary, cooperative team approach to address the needs of children subjected to violence as victims or as witnesses and to their non-offending family members. The center provides a safe, caring, home-like atmosphere that coordinates the combined knowledge of law enforcement, social service, medical, prosecutorial, and mental health agencies to ensure an effective response to childhood trauma. Kids' Place gives children who have experienced violence in their lives, either as victims of abuse or witnesses to domestic violence, a safe place to tell their stories and get help.

Child Witness to Violence Program

Referral Line: (617) 414-7425

Spanish Speaking Referrals: (617)-414-4522

The Child Witness to Violence Project (CWVP) is a counseling, advocacy, and outreach project that focuses on the growing number of young children who are hidden victims of violence: children who are bystanders to community and domestic violence. CWVP is staffed by a multi-cultural, multi-lingual staff of social workers, psychologists, early childhood specialists, and a consulting pediatrician and consulting attorney. It is run under the auspices of the Department of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics at Boston Medical Center.

Close to Home- Domestic Violence Prevention Initiative



Close to Home's mission is to foster community-wide responsibility to prevent and reduce the impact of domestic violence. Close to Home builds and supports networks of community residents and organizations in local neighborhoods that want to take action and address the problem of domestic violence together. Close to Home believes that domestic violence is a critical community issue and that all community members - youth, residents, families, friends, neighbors, civic leaders, and organizational partners - are essential to designing and implementing the solutions to the problem. Close to Home seeks to create opportunities for people and organizations to learn about domestic violence in their community, discuss and reflect on domestic violence in their lives and communities, develop skills to respond to and prevent domestic violence, develop and implement solutions to domestic violence, and build strong meaningful connections with each other.



Fax: 617-547-0904


Emerge's mission is to eliminate violence in all interpersonal relationships. In working toward this goal, Emerge seeks to educate individual abusers, prevent young people from learning to accept violence in their relationships, improve institutional responses to domestic violence, and increase public awareness about the causes and solutions to relational violence.

Family Justice Center of Boston

(617) 534-5395


The Family Justice Center (FJC) of Boston provides a safe and welcoming environment where you can talk about your experiences and explore your options. You may need help finding your way through the legal system and understanding your rights as a victim. You may want to know if and how your child has been harmed, and by whom. You may be looking for the support that you need to stay safe and start over. At the FJC, individuals and families have access to a wide range of free services offered by a diverse group of partner organizations. FJC Partners are here to serve all victims and survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse - including non-English speakers, immigrants (regardless of your status) and gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender individuals. Childcare is provided during your visit. All services are offered free of charge.

Fenway Community Health Center, Violence Recovery Program


Toll Free: 800-834-3242


The Violence Recovery Program (VRP) at Fenway Community Health was founded in 1986. The VRP provides counseling, support groups, advocacy, and referral services to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) victims of bias crime, domestic violence, sexual assault and police misconduct. Other services include a support group for LGBT domestic violence survivors, the region's only support group for male survivors of rape and sexual assault, advocacy with the courts and police, and assistance with victim compensation.

Futures Without Violence

Phone: 617-702-2004

Fax: 857-415-3293


Everyone has the right to live free of violence. Futures Without Violence, formerly Family Violence Prevention Fund, works to prevent and end violence against women and children around the world. From domestic and dating violence, to child abuse and sexual assault, Futures Without Violence works to end some of the most pressing global issues of our time. Striving to reach new audiences and transform social norms, we train professionals such as doctors, nurses, athletic coaches, and judges on improving responses to violence and abuse. As well, we work with advocates, policy makers and others to build sustainable community leadership and educate people everywhere about the importance of respect and healthy relationships.

Girls’ LEAP Self-Defense, Inc.

Phone: (617) 514-4285

Fax: (617)-514-4529


Girls' LEAP (Lifetime Empowerment & Awareness Program) trains at-risk girls aged 8-18 in verbal and physical safety skills and self-awareness. LEAP helps girls develop a diverse set of responses to violence, beyond the extremes of passivity and escalation. LEAP's physical skills techniques maximize girls' options and help girls to make safe decisions in spite of fear. The self-reflective skills strengthen girls' ability to say "no" in difficult situations, to create safe and constructive boundaries, and to identify and trust their own feelings.

Jane Doe Inc.


617-263-2200 x TTY


Jane Doe Inc., The Massachusetts Coalition Against Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence brings together organizations and people committed to ending domestic violence and sexual assault. JDI creates social change by addressing the root causes of this violence, and promotes justice, safety and healing for survivors. JDI advocates for responsive public policy, promotes collaboration, raises public awareness, and supports its member organizations to provide comprehensive prevention and intervention services. The website includes listings of sexual assault crisis centers in Massachusetts as well as information on sexual violence and guides for safety planning, getting help, and finding resources for specific populations (e.g. LGBTQ).

Journey to Safety, Jewish Family & Children's Services (JF&CS)



Journey to Safety (formerly Kol Isha) provides culturally competent and religiously sensitive services to all victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and human trafficking no matter what their background, with specialized services for the Jewish community and the Russian-speaking community. Services are available to adults, seniors, teens and the GLBT community, and are designed to provide the support and resources needed to help victims remain safe. All services are free and confidential.

Passageway: Domestic Abuse Intervention and Prevention

617-264-8747 (M-F 8:30am-5pm)

Fax: 617-264-8756

The Passageway program works to improve the health, well-being, and safety of those experiencing abuse from an intimate partner. Passageway offers the following support services to Brigham and Women's and Faulkner hospitals and affiliated health center patients, employees, and community members: free and confidential advocacy services, safety planning, individual counseling and support, information about the health effects of domestic violence, support groups, medical advocacy, legal and court advocacy and referrals to community resources (health care, housing, shelter, lawyers, and others).
Services are flexible and designed to create safe access for individuals. A person does not need to leave a relationship to use our services. Passageway supports a person's individual choices and rights. All services are free, voluntary, and confidential.

Second Step



The Second Step provides resources and stabilization services to women in the Greater Boston area who are in abusive situations and have left their abusers and need continued services or support. The Second Step provides transitional services to survivors of domestic abuse and their children, including: transitional housing, assistance with finding employment or training, and children's services.

Outside Massachusetts

Organizations with hotlines

ChildHelp National Child Abuse Hotline



The Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline 1-800-4-A-CHILD (1-800-422-4453) is dedicated to the prevention of child abuse. Serving the United States, its territories, and Canada, the hotline is staffed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with professional crisis counselors who, through interpreters, can provide assistance in over 170 languages. The hotline offers crisis intervention, information, literature, and referrals to thousands of emergency, social service, and support resources. All calls are confidential.

Love Is Respect

Helpline: 866-331-9474, Text: LOVEIS to 22522 chat 24/7/365

Love is respect is a project of the National Domestic Violence Hotline and Break the Cycle. By combining our resources and capacity, we are reaching more people, building more healthy relationships and saving more lives. The website designed for teenagers to provide information and assistance for dealing with domestic and dating violence such as tips on calling the police and safety planning.

National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence

Hotline: 1-800-799-7233

TTY: 1-800-787-3224

The National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence provides training and consultation, influences policy, and promotes collaboration with the goal of ending domestic and sexual violence. The website provides links to extensive resources related to relationship violence within specific communities. There is a special section on the organization's efforts to stop relationship violence in military families:

National Domestic Violence Hotline

Hotline: 800-799-7233

TTY: 800-787-3224

Office: 512-453-8117

At the National Domestic Violence Hotline we believe that every caller deserves to be treated with dignity and respect, that every family deserves to live in a world free from violence, and that safe homes and safe families are the foundation of a safe society.
Until the violence stops, the hotline will continue to answer--One Call at a Time. Help is available to callers 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Hotline advocates are available for victims and anyone calling on their behalf to provide crisis intervention, safety planning, information and referrals to agencies in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Assistance is available in English and Spanish with access to more than 140 languages through interpreter services. If you or someone you know is frightened about something in your relationship, please call the National Domestic Violence Hotline.

SafePlace: Stop Abuse for Everyone


The SAFE Alliance is a structured partnership between SafePlace and Austin Children’s Shelter, two organizations that serve the survivors of child abuse and neglect, sexual assault and exploitation, and domestic violence. The mission of the organizations is to lead in ending sexual assault and exploitation, child abuse and domestic violence through prevention, intervention and advocacy for change. We take our name, SAFE | Stop Abuse For Everyone, very seriously. All of our programs and services are available to everyone. No person will ever be denied the benefits of our programs and services based on race, ethnicity, sex, religion, age, language differences, sexual orientation, gender identity, socio-economic status, marital or familial status or disability.

That's Not Cool

Helpline: 866-331-9474

That's Not Cool is a website that provides information about digital dating abuse and addresses new and complicated problems between teens who are dating or hooking-up, such as problems like constant and controlling texting, pressuring for nude pictures and breaking into someone's email or social networking page. Sponsored and co-created by the Family Violence Prevention Fund, the Office on Violence Against Women and the Ad Council.

Organizations without hotlines


If you are a man educating himself, this is a place for you to learn more, reflect on your situation, find answers to your questions, and explore your options – all at your own pace, and in complete privacy. has regularly updated information and resources for many other visitors too, not only families, friends, or partnerts, but also therapists and other helping professional, journalists, educators, and attorneys, judges and law enforcement officers.  The organization offers outreach, education and services, in person and over the web, to men with histories of unwanted or abusive childhood sexual experiences and anyone who cares about them.  It also offers an online support service.  The 1in6 Online SupportLine is a free, confidential, secure service that provides live help over the 1in6 website.

A Call To Men



A CALL TO MEN is a leading national violence prevention organization providing training and education for men, boys and communities. Our aim is to shift social norms that negatively impact our culture and promote a more healthy and respectful definition of manhood. We believe that preventing domestic and sexual violence is primarily the responsibility of men. Although historically it has been almost entirely women who have been at the forefront addressing this issue, we think it is essential that men play a primary role in the solution. A CALL TO MEN offers a variety of trainings, consultations and technical assistance.

Break the Cycle



Founded in 1996, Break the Cycle is still the only agency to provide comprehensive dating abuse prevention programs exclusively to young people. We believe everyone has the right to a safe and healthy relationship and work every day to make that right into a reality. Break the Cycle offers programs providing help, tools and information to prevent and end domestic and dating violence. is the most comprehensive resource on the web to provide education about domestic violence.

Date Safe Project

Phone: (920) 326-3687

Toll Free: (800) 329-9390

Through interactive presentations, educational resources, and unique national initiatives, The Date Safe Project is committed to being the nation's leading organization for teaching how "asking first" makes all the difference in creating safer intimacy and in decreasing occurrences of sexual assault.The Date Safe Project provides students, educators, schools, and communities with interactive keynote presentations, workshops, books, and educational resources that are filled with fun exercises, thought-provoking lessons, emotionally touching stories, and easy to implement concepts. Parents are given simple solutions to talk with their kids about tough questions regarding dating and sexual assault awareness.

Disability and Abuse Project

(310) 473-6768


The focus of this organization is to help prevent the physical, sexual, and emotional abuse of people with developmental or intellectual disabilities. Their mission is to disseminate information on how to reduce the risk of abuse, to promote healing for victims, and to seek justice for those who have been victimized. The Disability and Abuse Project is a function of Spectrum Institute, a nonprofit educational corporation.  The Project works with nonprofit organizations, media, government agencies, and individual advocates. The website contains information on books and resources relevant to issues involving disability and abuse.

Hope for Healing. Org



Hope for Healing is an organization that providesonline peer support as well as rape crisis counseling. The website has a number of resources for individuals who have experienced sexual assault and domestic violence. The website also has specific support for men who have been assaulted or abused. 

International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect


The International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect is a multidisciplinary international organization that brings together a worldwide cross-section of committed professionals to work toward the prevention and treatment of child abuse, neglect and exploitation globally. ISPCAN's mission is to prevent cruelty to children in every nation, in every form: physical abuse, sexual abuse, neglect, street children, child fatalities, child prostitution, children of war, emotional abuse and child labor. ISPCAN is committed to increasing public awareness of all forms of violence against children, developing activities to prevent such violence, and promoting the rights of children in all regions of the world.

Joyful Heart Foundation

New York office: 212-475-2026


The mission of the Joyful Heart Foundation is to heal, educate and empower survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence and child abuse. In fulfilling that mission, Joyful Heart Foundation is committed to providing the most up to date information, resources and statistics pertaining to sexual assault, domestic violence and child abuse. Joyful Heart makes it a priority to continuously educate themselves and to share this knowledge with their supporters, clients, partners and the community. Joyful Heart provides survivors with the information and links to national and local organizations where they can receive the appropriate support and assistance on their journey towards healing.

Male Suvivor

MaleSurvivor has been a leader in the fight to improve the resources and support available to male survivors of all forms of sexual abuse in the US and around the globe. We are a community built upon a unique foundation of respect and mutual partnership between survivors themselves and the professionals who work with them. MaleSurvivor staff also travel extensively to provide support and training across a wide range of disciplines to help ensure that all survivors of sexual violence have access to trained, compassionate, and effective support. The website offers a number of resources for male survivors and offers a therapist and support group directory. 


National Center on Elder Abuse



The NCEA provides the latest information regarding research, training, best practices, news and resources on elder abuse, neglect and exploitation to professionals and the public. First established by the U.S. Administration on Aging (AoA) in 1988 as a national elder abuse resource center, the NCEA was granted a permanent home at AoA in the 1992 amendments made to Title II of the Older Americans Act.

The NCEA is one of 27 Administration on Aging-funded Resource Centers. Research shows that as many as two million elders are abused in the United States. The Administration on Aging recognizes that as a government, as a society and as individuals, we must increase our efforts to insure that all older adults age with dignity and honor.

National Committee on the Prevention of Elder Abuse (NCPEA)



The National Committee for the Prevention of Elder Abuse (NCPEA) is an association of researchers, practitioners, educators, and advocates dedicated to protecting the safety, security, and dignity of America's most vulnerable citizens. It provides education on what elder abuse is and resources to get help for someone who is an elder and being absused. You can call the NCPEA If you have a complaint about abuse, neglect, or exploitation of an elderly person or a vulnerable adult. 

Violence Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


TTY 888-232-6348


Violence is a serious public health problem in the United States. From infants to the elderly, it affects people in all stages of life. In 2005, more than 18,000 people were victims of homicide and more than 32,000 took their own life. The number of violent deaths tells only part of the story. Many more survive violence and are left with permanent physical and emotional scars. Violence also erodes communities by reducing productivity, decreasing property values, and disrupting social services. This CDC website includes information on a variety of topics related to violence prevention, including youth violence, relationship violence, and suicide.