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About HRI

HRI is a leading non-governmental organisation working to reduce the negative health, social and human rights impacts of drug use and drug policy by promoting evidence-based public health policies and practices, and human rights based approaches to drugs. Read more about HRI’s history.

Vision and Mission

Our vision is a world in which individuals and communities benefit from drug laws, policies and practices that promote health, dignity and human rights.


Meet our staff at HRI


HRI is governed by a Board of Directors of up to nine people, who are elected for three-year terms.

What is harm reduction?

Harm reduction refers to policies, programmes and practices that aim to reduce the harms associated with the use of psychoactive drugs in people unable or unwilling to stop. The defining features are the focus on the prevention of harm, rather than on the prevention of drug use itself, and the focus on people who continue to use drugs.

Harm reduction definition and principles in 12 languages

Contact Us

Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or queries about our website, our work, membership or the international harm reduction conference.


HRI benefits from the generous support of the Open Society Foundations, the European Commission, the Elton John AIDS Foundation, the MAC AIDS Fund, UNAIDS, the World Health Organization, the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, the World Bank, The Robert Carr Networks Fund and the Swiss Government.

Harm Reduction International Awards

HRI presents a number of awards at our international conference to acknowledge the contributions of outstanding groups or individuals in the field.

Strategic Plan

Our vision is a world in which individuals and communities benefit from drug policies, laws and practices that promote health, dignity and human rights

Our Work

Evidence for advocacy

HRI produces groundbreaking research and policy analysis informing advocacy across our sector.

Spending where it matters

Funding for harm reduction services is dangerously short while billions are wasted on drug enforcement. HRI works to assess resourcing needs and advocates for a reinvestment in health.

Harm Reduction Decade

Read our latest report calling for a Harm Reduction Decade, sign the Harm Reduction Decade Declaration, call for #10by20, and stand up for human rights of people who use drugs, their families and communities.

10 by 20 Campaign

We are calling on governments to redirect 10% of the resources currently spent on ineffective punitive responses to drugs and invest it in harm reduction by 2020.

Human rights-based policy

Human rights abuses and drug enforcement go hand in hand. HRI challenges laws, policies and practices that generate harm.

The Death Penalty for Drug Offences

HRI monitors the death penalty for drugs in law and practice worldwide, and also considers critical developments on the issue.

Sector strengthening

HRI builds advocacy coalitions and supports emerging harm reduction networks to strengthen the international harm reduction sector.

International conference

Harm reduction is a global movement. Our biennial gathering is the International Harm Reduction Conference, convened by HRI.


News and Announcements

Read the latest announcements and updates from HRI.

Global State of Harm Reduction

Global State of Harm Reduction

Our flagship publication is the biennial Global State of Harm Reduction report. First published in 2008, it involves a coordinated effort across practitioners, academics, advocates and activists to map global data and responses to HIV and hepatitis C epidemics related to unsafe injecting and non-injecting drug use. It is the only report to provide an independent analysis of the state of harm reduction in the world. The information collated within the report is stored and regularly updated on an interactive e-tool for researchers and advocates.

The Global State of Harm Reduction report is supplemented by regular thematic reports and advisories on key issues and emerging challenges. Please search our Resource Library for more information or join our e-list for regular updates.

Resource Library

Resource Library

Use our extensive resource library to search for HRI, NGO and academic reports, articles and presentations, including materials from past international conferences.

Harm Reduction Journal

Harm Reduction Journal, www.harmreductionjournal.com, is an open access, peer-reviewed, online journal whose focus is on the prevalent patterns of psychoactive drug use, the public policies meant to control them, and the search for effective methods of reducing the adverse medical, public health, and social consequences associated with both drugs and drug policies.

Contact Us

Contact Us

Harm Reduction International
61 Mansell Street
E1 8AN

Tel: +44(0) 207 324 3535
Join us on Facebook at: Harm Reduction International
Follow us on Twitter at: HRInews
Join us on Instagram at: hrinews


Conference 2019

The 26th Harm Reduction International Conference (HR19) which will take place April 28-May 1 in Porto, Portugal at the Alfândega Porto Congress Centre.

Register to attend HR19 here.


Meet our staff at HRI

Cinzia Brentari - Project Manager

Cinzia joined Harm Reduction International in 2014 as a project manager and provides expertise in project and organisational development and fundraising, in particular with reference to EU funds. Read more

Naomi Burke-Shyne - Executive Director

Naomi became Executive Director in September 2018 after previously serving as Deputy Director from October 2017, when she joined Harm Reduction International. She brings more than 10 years of… Read more

Catherine Cook - Head of Research

Catherine Cook joined Harm Reduction International in 2007 as Research Analyst and was appointed Harm Reduction International’s Head of Research in 2017. She now leads the research team, overseeing… Read more

Edward Fox - Communications Lead

Edward began working with Harm Reduction International in 2018 as Communications Lead and brings extensive experience in strategic communications on public health and human rights. Prior to joining​… Read more

Giada Girelli - Human Rights Analyst

Giada joined Harm Reduction International in 2018 as a Human Rights Advocate, focusing on the abolition of the death penalty for drug-related offences. Prior to working at Harm Reduction… Read more

Sarah Lowther - Finance Manager

Sarah joined Harm Reduction International in November 2013, and provides support and financial analysis to staff and the executive team Read more

Lucy O'Hare - Conference Manager

Lucy joined Harm Reduction International in April 2016. Along with Maddie, she is responsible for organising Harm Reduction International’s conference. Lucy also works at HIT, a UK-based harm… Read more

Maddie O'Hare - Conference Manager

Maddie joined Harm Reduction International in April 2016. Maddie is responsible for the organisation and smooth running of Harm Reduction International’s flagship biennial conference. Maddie is… Read more

Emily Rowe - Project Officer

Emily Rowe is an Australian born, Bali based post-doctoral researcher who has been living in Indonesia since 1998. Emily joined Harm Reduction International in June 2017 as Project Officer for the… Read more

Genevieve Sander - Human Rights Analyst

Gen Sander joined Harm Reduction International in September 2014 as a human rights analyst. Read more

Sam Shirley-Beavan - Research Assistant

Sam joined Harm Reduction International in 2018 as a research assistant, working on the Global State of Harm Reduction report. Before joining Harm Reduction International, Sam worked for the… Read more

Katie Stone - Research Analyst

Katie joined Harm Reduction International in 2014 and oversees the production of the Global State of Harm Reduction 2014 Read more

Olga Szubert - Campaigns and Advocacy Manager

Olga joined Harm Reduction International in 2015 as Campaigns Manager. Prior to working at HRI, Olga worked at Stonewall as International Policy Officer and at the International HIV/AIDS Alliance… Read more

© 2018 Harm Reduction International.

Charity number – 1117375 | Company number – 3223265

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