Vietnam Should Shut Compulsory Rehab Centers For Drug Users, Sex Workers, U.N. Expert Says

A U.N. expert on Monday “urged Vietnam … to close down its compulsory rehabilitation centers for sex workers and drug users, stressing that detention and forced treatment violate their right to health and perpetuate stigmatization and discrimination of those groups in the society,” the U.N. News Centre reports (12/5). “‘It’s essential to ensure that the considerable resources now invested in these centers are used instead to expand alternative treatments for injecting drug users,’ said” U.N. Special Rapporteur on the Right to Health Anand Grover, the Associated Press/Washington Post writes (12/5).

“Grover praised the government for starting pilot community-based initiatives and methadone programs, which help reduce withdrawal symptoms in drug users and are ‘less costly and more effective in reducing drug use and facilitating the reintegration of injecting drug users back into the society,'” the U.N. News Centre notes (12/5). According to the AP, “Vietnam’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs did not immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday” (12/5).

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