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NFL to partner with violence hotline

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In this Aug. 7, 2014, file photo, Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice sits on the sideline in the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the San Francisco 49ers in Baltimore. In this Aug. 7, 2014, file photo, Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice sits on the sideline in the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the San Francisco 49ers in Baltimore.

NEW YORK (AP) — The NFL is partnering with a domestic violence hotline and a sexual violence resource center.

Responding to increasing criticism that the league has not acted quickly or emphatically enough concerning domestic abuse cases involving players, Commissioner Roger Goodell sent a memo to the clubs late Thursday announcing the partnerships.

The league will provide financial, operational and promotional support to the National Domestic Violence Hotline and the National Sexual Violence Resource Center.

Goodell said this will "enable both the hotline and NSVRC to help more people affected by domestic violence and sexual assault."

Goodell and some NFL teams have been heavily criticized for lenient or delayed punishment of Ray Rice, Adrian Peterson and other players involved in recent domestic violence cases. Less than three weeks into the season, five such cases have made headlines.

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AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP_NFL

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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