Call to action COVID-19 - Special Rapporteur on the Right to Health

Date: 31 March 2020

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HRI joined leaders in harm reduction to call on the Special Rapporteur on the Right to Health to provide guidance to states on how to promote and protect the right to health of people who use drugs in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The COVID-19 emergency poses unprecedented challenges, creating new vulnerabilities and exacerbating existing ones. In this context, people who use drugs have unique needs and face unique risks due to criminalisation, stigma, underlying health issues, social marginalisation and higher economic and social vulnerabilities, including a lack of access to adequate housing and healthcare.

Harm Reduction International, the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network, the Eurasian Harm Reduction Association (EHRA), the International Drug Policy Consortium (IDPC), the International Network of People who use Drugs (INPUD), LBH Masyarakat, Release, and Rights Reporter Foundation further welcomed the joint statement by the Special Rapporteur and other Special Procedures on the adoption of emergency measures to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, urging states to “remain steadfast in maintaining a human rights-based approach to regulating this pandemic.”

© 2020 Harm Reduction International.

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