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May 21, 2008

Harm Reduction 2009 in Thailand. Do or Don't? (DrugReporter)

The International Harm Reduction Association (IHRA) anounced that the next international harm reduction conference will be held in Bangkok, Thailand. According to IHRA, this is a tremendous advocacy opportunity to change the attitudes of the Thai government and society toward people who use drugs. However, many people from the harm reduction movement do not share the optimism of IHRA, some of them are even deeply concerned about this decision. They say it is unsafe to invite drug users to a country that recently declared a war on drugs and remind us of the terrible extrajudicial killings of 2004 – that happened after IHRA’s conference was held there, without a significant advocacy impact.

The supporters of the Bangkok conference say there is no evidence that the Thai government is planning to kill drug users - even if government officials made controversial statements about the necessity of killing drug users. It seems the question divides the international harm reduction community, even the drug user movement.

HCLU is filming the conference in Barcelona and interviewed participant s about their opinion.


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