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Attorney General Kilmartin Holding Cell Phone Recycling Drive to Benefit Victims of Domestic Violence

To recognize National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin is holding a cell phone recycling drive to benefit victims of domestic violence and the Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence (RICADV). The drive also disposes of old cell phones in an environmentally safe way. Throughout the month of October, the public is invited to drop off old and discarded cell phones and cell phone accessories at the Office of Attorney General in Providence and several courthouse offices throughout Rhode Island.

Cell phones can become an effective tool in the fight against domestic violence. Instead of being discarded, an old phone can be refurbished and put to good use against domestic abuse through a cell phone recycling program. Cell phones are then reprogrammed and used as 911 Emergency phones for individuals in the community at risk of domestic violence. This communication may provide a critical link between law enforcement and a victim of domestic violence who is in a life threatening emergency.

Cell phones not utilized for this purpose will be instead be recycled through HopeLine®, a Verizon Wireless phone recycling program that supports domestic violence coalitions throughout the country, including the RICADV. Wireless phones given to HopeLine are refurbished and sold for reuse, generating proceeds for the program. Refurbished phones – complete with 3,000 minutes of wireless service – are provided to local domestic violence organizations or local government and law enforcement agencies for use with their domestic violence clients. If donated phones are unsalvageable, they are recycled in an environmentally sound way under a zero landfill policy.

“Nearly one in four women, one in nine men, and over 3 million children are affected by domestic violence. Cell phones can serve as a vital link to emergency or support services in a time of crisis or as a reliable, safe connection to employers, family and friends as survivors rebuild their lives,” said Attorney General Kilmartin. “Through the simple act of donating an old cell phone sitting around your home or office, together we can use technology to empower domestic violence victims and help change lives.”

"It wasn't so long ago when the Coalition Against Domestic Violence was the lone voice speaking out about domestic violence," said Deborah DeBare, executive director of the RI Coalition Against Domestic Violence. "Today, we have champions and voices in leadership, like Attorney General Kilmartin, who are standing with us to end domestic violence in every community."

"Domestic violence touches all walks of life and does not discriminate against age, race or social class," said Christine Berberich, Verizon Wireless’ New England region president. "Donating a no-longer used phone during October is an easy way to support organizations like the Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence that help address this very important issue.”

How it Works: Donate old and discarded cell phones, batteries, chargers and all other cell phone accessories at any of the drop off locations below.

Privacy Concerns: The Office of Attorney General takes the protection of consumer information seriously. We encourage everyone who plans to donate a cell phone to erase any personal data on the phone before donating.

As part of its own refurbishing process, phones donated specifically to HopeLine are scrubbed prior to distribution for re-use to ensure all customer information is removed. Donated phones are put through an extensive refurbishing process to ensure that personal data such as phone numbers, messages, games and images are all removed. For more information please visit www.verizonwireless.com/HopeLine

Locations: Drop off locations at Attorney General offices inside the various courthouses. Drop-off hours: 8:30 am. – 4:30 p.m.

Office of the Attorney General 150 South Main Street Providence

Licht Judicial Complex 2nd Floor, 250 Benefit Street Providence

Kent County Courthouse James W. Leighton Judicial Complex 222 Quaker Lane Warwick, RI

Newport County Court House Eisenhower Square Newport, RI

Washington County Courthouse McGrath Judicial Complex 4800 Tower Hill Road Wakefield, RI

Related links

Department or agency: Department of the Attorney General

Online: http://www.riag.ri.gov/

Release date: 10-07-2011

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