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Domestic violence hits home: Part 3: Abusers face their demons in group therapy

May 26, 2014

WOONSOCKET – Hoodies, sneakers and sports caps are the preferred attire for these seven men, a group that appears mostly in their 20s, from a veritable rainbow of ethnic backgrounds.
It could be boys’ night out, a trip to a ballgame perhaps, except the setting is all wrong. They’re sitting around a cafeteria table in a cramped, austere conference room in a community center located in Providence’s gritty Manton section. Slumped in their chairs or staring off vacantly in the distance, a couple of the guys look bored, like there’s any place in the world they’d rather be. Others seem more engaged, talking quietly among each other while they wait for roll call to begin.
Welcome to batterer’s intervention group, a specialized class in reformatory education for domestic abusers. Most men – and women – convicted of any one of the state’s misdemeanor domestic crimes are ordered by the courts to enroll in such a group, at their own expense.
READ THE FULL SERIES IN THE CALL'S Sunday, Monday and Tuesday's editions.

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