× Close


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 nine person Board of Directors, 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 outr 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.

Interactive e-tool

Global State of Harm Reduction’ e-tool is an interactive resource containing up-to-date information on harm reduction policy and programming around the world. Users can select countries or regions and create tables for an at-a-glance guide to the current state of harm reduction worldwide.

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.

Harm Reduction International Blog

Women who use drugs, domestic violence and access to shelters PDF document

19 March 2013

HRI launched a new briefing paper on the issues of ‘Women who inject drugs and experience domestic violence and access to shelters’ at the side event on ‘preventing and eliminating the violence against women: drug policy reform as a way of violence elimination’ organised by Eurasian Harm Reduction Network on 12 March 2013 during the UN Commission… Read more

Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women - General Discussion on "access to justice"

19 February 2013

On 18 February 2013 Harm Reduction International made a statement at the Day of General Discussion of the UN Committee on Elimination of Discrimination against Women to highlight the direct and indirect discrimination against women affected by drugs and criminal justice policies across the globe: Thank you madam chairperson, Harm Reduction… Read more

EU drug strategy 2013-2020 strong on harm reduction, human rights, civil society participation

19 December 2012

The new EU drug strategy was adopted on December 11 without much in the way of fanfare. A year ago, harm reduction organisations had been concerned that changes in governments within EU member states, and changes in priorities within the European Commission might lead to a weaker strategy than had been in place from 2007-2012, and which had… Read more

Harm Reduction is a requirement of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child

06 November 2012

The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child has confirmed its view that harm reduction is a child rights requirement. Read more

Access to Legal Aid for People Who Use Drugs on UN agenda

29 October 2012

World leaders gathered at the UN General Assembly’s 67th session in New York last week to discuss strengthening the rule of law. In the midst of this discussion, the Third Committee (which deals with humanitarian and social affairs) adopted the draft UN Principles on Access to Legal Aid in Criminal Justice Systems . Within them, drug users are… Read more

'Ireland considering the Swedish model against prostitution? Maybe not after all' by Louise Persson

29 October 2012

A surprisingly mixed crowd gathered on the 13th of October in Dublin at the Department of Justice for a conference to discuss the future of Irish prostitution policy and law. Read more

Commonwealth countries should take steps to repeal discriminatory laws that impede effective HIV responses

19 September 2012

Commonwealth countries should take steps to repeal discriminatory laws that impede effective HIV responses. Commonwealth Ministers of Foreign Affairs will meet on 29 September in New York to decide whether the Commonwealth will show leadership to reform outdated laws. Your support is needed to make sure they do.  Criminalizing people… Read more

Existing drugs laws are harmful to individuals, communities and countries - Joint op-ed by HRI and the International Federation of the Red Cross

14 August 2012

Do no harm and protect people from injustice. These are the basic principles of the Hippocratic Oath, which is taken by doctors all over the world. Within these principles are the fundamental concepts of impartiality, humanity, equity and fairness which should underpin public policy. They also reflect the humanitarian foundations upon which the… Read more

Serbian Priest Kills Drug User YouTube

08 August 2012

A Serbian Orthodox Church priest has killed a man at a rehab centre, reviving memories of brutal beatings at a church run addiction treatment centre in the country. Read more

Harm reduction in a Malaysian fishing village - a slideshow

07 August 2012

A short slideshow depicting a needle and syringe programme operating within a Malaysian fishing community. Read more

© 2018 Harm Reduction International.

Charity number – 1117375 | Company number – 3223265

Powered by Phoenix Media Group

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Youtube
  • Instagram