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Integrating medications for opioid use disorder into a 12-step treatment program

Medications for opioid use disorder like buprenorphine/naloxone, often known by the brand name Suboxone, are life-saving, empirically supported interventions. A major barrier to their adoption in residential and other common 12-step-focused programs is the perceived tension between use of these medications – particularly agonists such as methadone and buprenorphine – and the “abstinence-based” 12-step philosophy. The authors of this study show that it is feasible to provide these medications within a 12-step oriented treatment program. They also provide a valuable first look at outcomes for the patients who participated. (Recovery Research Institute, USA, Oktober 2019)

https://www.recoveryanswers.org/research-post/medication-therapy-12-step-integration/

Launch of Injecting Drug User Implementation Tool Training Manual 

INPUD is very excited to launch the Injecting Drug User Implementation Tool Training Manual and accompanying slides.

Developed jointly by UNODC and INPUD, in collaboration with other partners, the guidance document Implementing Comprehensive HIV Programmes with People who Inject Drugs: Practical Approaches from Collaborative Interventions – otherwise known as the Injecting Drug User Implementation Tool (IDUIT) – was published in 2016.  It describes how to implement effective programmes and services for HIV and HCV prevention interventions for and with people who inject drugs.

The training manual is designed to support the roll-out of the IDUIT through capacity building at regional, country or local level. It has been developed to facilitate the work of trainers in organising and delivering training and workshops on the IDUIT to communities of people who use drugs to help them serve their own community in line with the evidence based and human rights-based approaches outlined in the IDUIT, and to interact with a wide range of governmental and non-governmental organisations, including public health and drug policy makers, and harm reduction and HIV programme managers and staff. (INPUD - International Network of People who Use Drugs, Oktober 2019)

https://www.inpud.net/en/launch-injecting-drug-user-implementation-tool-training-manual

What does Universal Health Coverage mean for People who use Drugs: A technical brief 

On 23rd of September, 2019 the United Nations General Assembly will hold a High-Level Meeting (HLM) on Universal Health Coverage (UHC). The theme of this meeting is “Universal Health Coverage: Moving Together to Build a Healthier World” and ostensibly aims to accelerate progress towards universal health coverage. Given the political momentum generated due to the upcoming HLM on UHC, and the potential for country-level action towards realising universal health coverage, it is important for all drug user rights advocates to stay informed. 

This INPUD Technical Brief explains how Universal Health Coverage (UHC) can be both an opportunity and a concern for the health and rights of people who use drugs. (INPUD - International Network of People who Use Drugs, 20.09.2019)

https://www.inpud.net/sites/default/files/Universal%20Health%20Coverage.pdf

Iran/USA. Recovery without borders: The cross-cultural applicability of Narcotics Anonymous

Narcotics Anonymous (NA) is a nonprofessional, 12-step-based mutual–help organization with 70,065 meetings worldwide, of which 27,677 are in the USA. Somewhat surprisingly, Iran has seen the largest increase in NA meetings in the past 10 years. This study conducted a cross-cultural comparison of participation in the two countries with some unexpected results. (Recovery Research Institute, USA, 2019)

https://www.recoveryanswers.org/research-post/narcotics-anonymous-cultural/

Infodigest from ENPUD - July 2019

This is the first issue of the information digest produced by the Eurasian Network of People who use drugs.

The digest provides information about the activities of ENPUD members and updates on developments in activism and the policy landscape in the EECA region. (Eurasian Network of People Who Use Drugs (ENPUD, 27.08.2019)

http://fileserver.idpc.net/library/ENPUD_infodigest_july2019_eng.pdf

Wake up - We Are Dying! A Call to Action from People who use Drugs on International Overdose Awareness Day 

On International Overdose Awareness Day, we, as people who use drugs from around the world, demand an end to the death and devastation wrought by the overdose epidemic. Awareness is nothing without concerted political action. 

Our very lives, and the lives of those we love, are the human cost of this deadly war on drugs. All too often, drugs themselves are blamed for claiming so many lives. In reality, we should lay the blame on the architects of the disastrous drug war, the lack of political will to find real solutions, and the societal apathy generated by decades of stigma and discrimination. The combined cost of all this is proving too brutal to bear. Today, as we do every other day, drug user unions and networks call for action. (INPUD - The International Network of People who Use Drugs, 31.08.2019)

https://www.inpud.net/en/wake-we-are-dying-call-action-people-who-use-drugs-international-overdose-awareness-day

USA. National Urban Survivors Union

https://ncurbansurvivorunion.org/

Niederlande. Mainline- Annual report 2018

In 2018 Mainline has worked on the improvement of health and legal empowerment of people who use drugs (PWUD) in the Netherlands and abroad. (Mainline, Niederlande, Mai 2019)

https://english.mainline.nl/page/annual-report-2018

ANPUD SHORT FILMS COMPETITION 2018
Watch and share the shortlisted films, launched by the Asian Network of People who use drugs. #ChangePerspectives. (ANPUD – Asian Network of People who use Drugs, 2019)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oWM7ZQty58A&list=PLavaH4OnxHnRZaJ_D74KcFQWc0SiwimxZ

Mainline – It is Mainline's mission to improve the health and rights of people who use drugs.

Mainline provides harm reduction services, training, consultancy and a lifestyle magazine. We work with partner organisations domestically and abroad through various projects. We have been dedicated to the principle of harm reduction, for 28 years. (Mainline, Niederlande, 2019)

https://english.mainline.nl/page/home

Kanada. Heroin Compassion Clubs

A cooperative model to reduce opioid overdose deaths & disrupt organized crime’s role in fentanyl, money laundering & housing unaffordability

BC Centre on Substance Use (BCCSU), Kanada, 2019

http://www.bccsu.ca/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Report-Heroin-Compassion-Clubs.pdf

Neuseeland/Global. International Indigenous Drug Policy Network Launched 

An international indigenous network for drug law reform was launched yesterday at the international indigenous conference, Healing Our Spirit Worldwide – The Eighth Gathering, in Sydney, Australia. (NZ Drug Foundation, 28.11.2018)

https://www.drugfoundation.org.nz/news-media-and-events/international-indigenous-drug-policy-network-launched/

IDUIT (Implementing Comprehensive HIV and HCV Programmes with People Who Inject Drugs)

Implementing Comprehensive HIV and HCV Programmes with People Who Inject Drugs: Practical Guidance for Collaborative Interventions (the “IDUIT”)

This tool contains practical advice on implementing HIV and hepatitis C (HCV) programmes with people who inject drugs. It is based on recommendations in the WHO, UNODC, UNAIDS technical guide for countries to set targets for universal access to HIV prevention, treatment and care for injecting drug users – 2012 revision and the Consolidated guidelines on HIV prevention, diagnosis, treatment and care for key populations – 2016 update. (INPUD - International Network of People Who Use Drugs, 2018)

http://www.inpud.net/en/iduit-implementing-comprehensive-hiv-and-hcv-programmes-people-who-inject-drugs

Schweiz. Kooperation zwischen Selbsthilfe und Suchthilfe

Infodrog, die schweizerische Koordinations- und Fachstelle Sucht des Bundesamtes für Gesundheit fördert und unterstützt die Vielfalt, Durchlässigkeit, Vernetzung und Qualität der Angebote in der Suchthilfe und engagiert sich in der Arbeitsgruppe "Nationale Partnerschaften Gemeinschaftliche Selbsthilfe". (infodrog, Schweiz, 2018)

https://www.infodrog.ch/files/content/selbsthilfe/publikation/Selbsthilfe_Publikation.pdf

USA. The People’s National Drug User Union: We are Experts! We are Family!

Mission: The Urban Survivor’s Union is a grassroots coalition of drug users(both former and active) dedicated to insuring respect, dignity and social justice for our community. We contest the dominant culture’s misguided attitudes and biases about drug useand drug users.  USU stands for a new direction by centering our programs on putting the drug userfirst and foremost.We believe that efforts to advance our agenda must be guided by democratic principles, and a dedication to diversity.  All USU activities are directed and carried out by drug users (former and active) in order to insure the integrity of our mission and that of the drug user’s movement. (Urban Survivor’s Union, USA, 2018)

https://urban-survivors.org/

Kanada. Coalition of addiction advocates urge federal government to decriminalize opioids

Advocacy groups for drug users assembled in Edmonton this week are urging the federal government to immediately move toward decriminalization of all drugs if they want to reduce the number of opioid overdose deaths happening nationwide.

And the pending legalization of cannabis provides a “glimmer of hope” that Ottawa is moving toward a more sensible drug policy, experts say. (The Star, Edmonton/Kanada, 03.10.2018)

https://www.thestar.com/edmonton/2018/10/03/coalition-of-addiction-advocates-urge-federal-government-to-decriminalize-opioids.html

Support – don’t punish 2018: Record-breaking Global Day of Action!

Once more, on 26 June 2018, our movement rocked the world! More people, more cities(220+) and more countries(98) than ever joined this worldwide demonstration against the war on drugs.

http://supportdontpunish.org/day-of-action-2018/

ANPUD statement: The war on drugs is a war on us - June 26th is the reminder

THE WAR ON DRUGS IS A WAR ON US – 26TH JUNE IS THE REMINDER

“People do not lose their human rights because they use or sell drugs”

– UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein. (ANPUD – Asian Network of People who use Drugs, 27.06.2018)

http://fileserver.idpc.net/library/26th%20June%202018_WOD%20is%20war%20on%20us.pdf

The Dope – Online News von EuroNPUD – the european network of people who use drugs

EuroNPUD's 1st Newsletter called The Dope! it will arrive in your inbox every 4-6 weeks with updates on what is happening within the world of drug user activism in the European Union. Has your user Group got any news? Tell us about it! (Juni 2018)

https://mailchi.mp/c29e5fe417cf/thank-you-for-subscribing-to-euronpuds-first-news-update-the-dope-edition-no-1

Activism and scientific research: 20 years of community action by the Vancouver area network of drug users

Ehsan Jozaghi,Alissa M. Greer,Hugh Lampkinand Jane A. Buxton

Substance Abuse Treatment, Prevention, and Policy2018, 13:18, doi.org/10.1186/s13011-018-0158-1

https://substanceabusepolicy.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13011-018-0158-1

The Rights of People Who Use Drugs: An Interview With INPUD’s Judy Chang 

The war on drugs has failed. This is a reality that’s increasingly being acknowledged around the globe, as communities start to realise that the outcomes produced by this intensification of drug law enforcement have been overwhelmingly destructive. (Sydney Criminal Lawyers, Australien, 14.05.2018)

https://www.sydneycriminallawyers.com.au/blog/the-rights-of-people-who-use-drugs-an-interview-with-inpuds-judy-chang/

Berlin. БерЛУН. Люди, Желающие Перемен / BerLUN. People Who Want Change

Спокойный атмосферный фильм о людях из пост-советских стран, которые посвятили свою жизнь активизму в сфере снижения вреда, но по тем или иным причинам были вынуждены покинуть свои страны. Всех их приютил и собрал вместе Берлин - город разнообразия и свободы. Организация русскоязычных потребителей наркотиков Берлина - БерЛУН - молодая инициативная группа, объединившая, однако, людей уникальных, опытных и очень разных при этом. Лариса Соловьева из российского Калиниграда занималась защитой прав наркопотребителей в своем городе, но, став жертвой репрессивной системы, была вынуждена уехать в Германию, спасаясь от пожизненного срока.   Как говорит сам Михаил Хор - активист из Беларуси -  о своем призвании: “В жизни наступает момент, когда ты понимаешь что нужно что-то менять. Это еще не активизм, но первый шаг на пути к нему.”

This is a calm, atmospheric film about people from post-Soviet countries who devoted their lives to activism in the field of harm reduction, but for one reason or another were forced to leave their countries. All of them were sheltered and brought together in Berlin, a city of diversity and freedom. The organization of Russian-speaking drug users in Berlin, BerLUN is a young initiative group that unites unique, experienced and very different people at the same time. Larisa Solovieva from Kaliningrad, Russia was involved in the protection of the rights of drug users in her city, but after becoming a victim of a repressive system, she was forced to leave for Germany, fleeing from life imprisonment. Mikhail Khor is an activist from Belarus. This is how he himself says about his vocation: "In life there comes a time when you understand that you need to change something. This is not yet activism, but the first step towards it". (Drug Users News, Ungarn, 05.03.2018)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=j80tn0zbPsw

Open letter on the UNODC/WHO International Standards for the Treatment of Drug Use Disorders

We, the undersigned civil society organisations working at the national, regional and international level on issues related to drug use, drug treatment, harm reduction and drug policies, are writing to you today regarding the joint UNODC and WHO publication entitled International Standards for the Treatment of Drug Use Disorders.

The ‘Draft for Field Testing’ of this document (March 2017) raises serious concerns and contains significant omissions and misrepresentations. We request your urgent action to prevent these Standards being released in their current state. (Unterzeichnet von 188 Organisationen, 08.03.2018)

http://www.inpud.net/sites/default/files/2018-03%20CSO%20Letter%20on%20the%20International%20Standards%20FINAL.pdf

The CND is Dying – Time to put People who use drugs, evidences and Human Rights at the center of the response.

Bikas Gurung and Rajiv Kafle, ANPUD, März 2018

The 61st session of the Commission on Narcotics Drugs (CND) was held from March 12-16, 2018 in Vienna, Austria. It was a disappointment like any of the last sixty sessions. It has become an automated session that follows the same algorithm in which member states would come, present usual blah blah blah, praise for their stupid accomplishments on drugs seizures, field eradications and compulsory rehab programs rather than introduction to right-based programmes/policies and lives saved.

The world is far more progressive or regressive than the CND deliberations – but it is not what member states are allowed to see, hear and speak. It reminded us of Gandhi’s three monkeys – See no evil, Hear no evil and Speak no evil.

In 2009, the WHO, UNODC and UNAIDS technical guide recommended a comprehensive package of interventions for the prevention, treatment and care of HIV among people who inject drugs – widely known as comprehensive harm reduction package. In 2016, Harm Reduction International (HRI) reported that 90 countries implemented needle and syringe programmes (NSPs) to some degree and 80 had at least one opioid substitution programme (OST) in place.[1] Worldwide, at least 20 countries have allowed cannabis for medicinal purposes; some more of them have introduced decriminalization for possession of cannabis for personal use;[2] few have already introduced a regulated cannabis industry; and few have decriminalized all forms of drugs for personal use. The first thing anyone attending the CND would notice is that the CND does not resonate these facts – no mentioning of “harm reduction”, “medicinal cannabis” or “decriminalization”.

http://www.anpud.org/the-cnd-is-dying-people-who-use-drugs-evidence-and-human-rights/

“They accept me, because I was one of them”: formative qualitative research supporting the feasibility of peer-led outreach for people who use drugs in Dakar, Senegal

Camille May Stengel, Famara Mane, Andrew Guise, Magath Pouye, Monika Sigrist and Tim Rhodes

Harm Reduction Journal, 2018, 15:9, doi.org/10.1186/s12954-018-0214-1

https://harmreductionjournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12954-018-0214-1

Kanada. Vancouver drug users take to the street to demand decriminalization

Amidst an opioid overdose crisis that has killed a record number of Canadians, activists call for drastic changes to federal drug laws. (Metro News, Toronto, 20.02.2018)

http://www.metronews.ca/news/vancouver/2018/02/20/vancouver-drug-users-demand-decriminalization.html

Kanada. CAPUD – Canadian Association of People Who Use Drugs

http://capud.ca/

USA. Drug Users Are Forming Unions To Protect Their Rights And Safety

Self-organized groups of opioid users are working together to stay alive and fight the stigma of drug use -- even if they’re not trying to quit.

With 287 members divided into chapters around New England, NEUU is one of several unions of drug users around the country. Like labor unions, tenant unions and many other counterparts, drug user unions operate on the premise that people facing a common problem should work together to fight the systems that perpetuate it. (Huffington Post, UK, 19.12.2017)

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/drug-user-unions_us_5a257c26e4b03350e0b86c00

The IDUIT Brief Guide for People who Use Drugs

People who use drugs are heavily affected by HIV, hepatitis C (HCV), and tuberculosis (TB) and are often neglected in countries’ and cities’ responses to the epidemics. There are effective means to prevent and treat HIV, HCV and TB among people who use drugs, but resources (financial, human and material) are often not adequately invested to make them accessible. The reasons for this are multifaceted and include criminalization, stigma, discrimination and denial of basic human rights to people who use drugs. This IDUIT Brief Guide for People who Use Drugs is intended to outline the key concepts of Implementing Comprehensive HIV and HCV Programs with People who Inject Drugs: Practical Guidance for Collaborative Interventions (the IDUIT) related to prevention, treatment and empowerment with regard to HIV and HCV, and point to how activists and professionals from among the community of people who use drugs might promote better policy and practice. (INPUD - International Network of People Who Use Drugs, 2017)

http://fileserver.idpc.net/library/The-IDUIT-Brief-Guide-for-PUDs-Online.pdf

VANCOUVER -- Had Al Fowler known more about his rights before enrolling in British Columbia's methadone treatment program in 2010, he may have avoided what he describes as a two-year "horror-show" while living in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside.

Fowler says the stigma and exploitation he experienced is part of what inspired him to co-author a handbook on how to navigate the province's opioid-substitution therapy program.

(...) Bill Nelles, a retired addiction counsellor based on Vancouver Island, said the handbook attempts to show the provincial government that people in drug-recovery programs want to be involved in matters that concern them.

"You may have heard, 'Nothing about us without us,' " said Nelles, who has been on a methadone program for 40 years. "But we're not there yet." (ctvnews.ca, Kanada, 15.02.2017)

http://www.ctvnews.ca/health/b-c-methadone-patients-pen-guide-for-users-of-opioid-substitution-program-1.3286115