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PLHIV Stigma Index - HIV Stigma Index 2.0

Stigma remains one of the biggest barriers preventing people living with HIV from accessing healthcare. The People Living with HIV Stigma Index was first launched in 2008. Ten years on, it was replaced by an updated and strengthened Stigma Index 2.0. (GLOBAL NETWORK OF PEOPLE LIVING WITH HIV (GNP+))


Human Rights, Stigma, and Substance Use. 

Wogen J, Restrepo MT. 

Health Hum Rights. 2020;22(1):51-60. 

Human Rights, Stigma, and Substance Use. 

Stigma: how it affects the substance use disorder patient. 

Zwick J, Appleseth H, Arndt S. 

Subst Abuse Treat Prev Policy. 2020;15(1):50. Published 2020 Jul 27. doi:10.1186/s13011-020-00288-0

Stigma: how it affects the substance use disorder patient. 

Words Matter! Language Statement & Reference Guide

ANPUD and INPUD underscore the links between language and stigma, offering guidance on respectful alternatives. (Asian Network of People who Use Drugs (ANPUD) and International Network of People Who Use Drugs (INPUD), Juli 2020)

Words Matter! Language Statement & Reference Guide

Philippinen. Death Penalty Danger in the Philippines - Reinstating Capital Punishment Risks International Condemnation, Sanctions. 

The plummeting human rights situation in the Philippines got even worse this week as the government began considering bills to reinstate the death penalty. The move by the House Committee on Justice came a week after President Rodrigo Duterte used his State of the Nation Address to call for capital punishment by lethal injection for drug offenders.

(Human Rights Watch, USA, 05.08.2020)

Philippinen. Death Penalty Danger in the Philippines - Reinstating Capital Punishment Risks International Condemnation, Sanctions. 

Infectious Disease Outbreak Related Stigma and Discrimination during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Drivers, Facilitators, Manifestations, and Outcomes across the World 

Ransing R, Ramalho R, de Filippis R, et al. 

[published online ahead of print, 2020 Jul 27]. Brain Behav Immun. 2020;S0889-1591(20)31693-7. doi:10.1016/j.bbi.2020.07.033

Infectious Disease Outbreak Related Stigma and Discrimination during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Drivers, Facilitators, Manifestations, and Outcomes across the World 

“They look at us like junkies”: influences of drug use stigma on the healthcare engagement of people who inject drugs in New York City. 

Muncan, B., Walters, S.M., Ezell, J. et al.

Harm Reduct J 17, 53 (2020). doi.org/10.1186/s12954-020-00399-8

“They look at us like junkies”: influences of drug use stigma on the healthcare engagement of people who inject drugs in New York City. 

China. China sentences Canadian to death on drugs charge

A Chinese court has sentenced a Canadian citizen to death on charges of producing the drug ketamine. (BBC, 06.08.2020)


UK. Our patients with addiction often feel little more than ‘animals’ in the pharmacy — we must change

“I just want you guys to know this: you are by far the best chemist that I’ve been to. I know we are addicts and that, but that doesn’t mean we have to be treated like animals, so thanks for being kind with people like us.” (Pharmaceutical Journal, UK, 20.07.2020)


Iran: Man executed for drinking alcohol 

Following the Iranian judicial authorities’ confirmation that on 8 July, a man in the city of Mashhad was executed following repeated convictions for drinking alcohol, Diana Eltahawy, Amnesty International’s Deputy Regional Director of Middle East and North Africa, said:

“The Iranian authorities have once again laid bare the sheer cruelty and inhumanity of their judicial system by executing a man simply for drinking alcohol. The victim was the latest person to be executed in Valkalibad prison, the site of numerous secret mass executions and a grotesque theatre of Iran’s contempt for human life. (Amnesty International, UK, 10.07.2020)


The war on drugs is built on racism. It’s time to decolonise drug policies.

Ann Fordham

(…) The acute racial injustices of drug control efforts around the world cannot be overstated and are the subject of growing attention. Last year, a group of UN experts on people of African descent noted that “the war on drugs has operated more effectively as a system of racial control than as a mechanism for combating the use and trafficking of narcotics”. Drug law enforcement has led to mass incarceration, arbitrary arrests and detention and devastating police brutality, the burden of which has fallen disproportionately on people of colour across the globe. All of this repression has sought to eliminate the illegal drug trade, yet year on year the UN’s own data shows an ever growing, diversifying and robust global market and this year’s World Drug Report released today, once again confirms the trend. (IDPC – International Drug Policy Consortium, UK, 26.06.2020)


Australien. StigmaWatch for Alcohol and Other Drugs (AOD) - Help tackle stigma in the media that affects us all

The StigmaWatch for Alcohol and Other Drugs (AOD) program has been established to support the media and ensure reporting about alcohol and other drugs in Australia is done so responsibly, respectfully and safely, in order to help reduce stigma and encourage access to support services. (Stigma Watch, Australien, 2020)


USA. When Justice for Black People Begins, the Looting Will Stop

Mr. Malakai Z. Hart and Dr. Carl L. Hart discussed the fallacy that drug use played a role in George Floyd's death and examined how this myth is used to justify police brutality and perpetuate racism against Black people. (Division on Addiction, Cambridge Health Alliance, a Harvard Medical School teaching hospital, USA, 26.06.2020)


USA. Race and Medicine on NEJM.org

This new page presents a selection of articles on race and medicine, with

implications for improving patient care, professional training, research, and public health. These articles are freely available. (New England Journal of Medicine, Juni 2020)


NIDA. Nora's Blog: A Message from the Director on Racially Motivated Violence 

(…) The long history of discrimination against racial minorities in America bears directly on NIDA’s mission to address addiction as a disease rather than a moral failing to be dealt with through punishment. Whites and Black/African Americans use drugs at similar rates, but it is overwhelmingly the latter group who are singled out for arrest and incarceration. This use of drug use and addiction as a lever to suppress people of a particular race has had devastating effects on communities of color. (NIDA – National Institute on Drug Abuse, N.Volkow, 04.06.2020)


Stigma during the COVID-19 pandemic

Bagcchi, Sanjeet

The Lancet Infectious Diseases, Volume 20, Issue 7, 782 


USA. Even with private insurance, black overdose patients are half as likely as whites to get addiction treatment, Penn study finds

Opioid overdose patients with private insurance are rarely connected to addiction treatment after visiting the emergency department, a new national study from the University of Pennsylvania has found.

And the problem is particularly severe among black and Hispanic patients, more evidence of deep racial disparities in health care generally and addiction treatment in particular. (The Philadelphia Inquirer, USA, 27.05.2020)


Assessment of Racial and Ethnic Disparities in the Use of Medication to Treat Opioid Use Disorder Among Pregnant Women in Massachusetts.

Schiff DM, Nielsen T, Hoeppner BB, et al. 

JAMA Netw Open. 2020;3(5):e205734. Published 2020 May 1. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.5734


No Time Like The Present: The BASIS Special Series on Race and Addiction

We are privileged to have The BASIS as a worldwide platform for our thoughts and to highlight important research that clarifies the devastating impacts of racism. Because there is no time like the present to start anti-racism work, this month we will feature a special series on race and addiction, addressing addiction-related discrimination, social determinants of health, health equity, and race. (Cambridge Health Alliance, Harvard Medical School, Juni 2020)


Racism and Policing Are Global Problems. Drug Control is a Vehicle.

There is now substantial evidence that the war on drugs has disproportionately targeted Black and Brown communities in the US, resulting in profound racial injustice. For decades, politicians in the US have used fear and misinformation to perpetuate racist stereotypes and link Black and Brown people to drug offences, creating irreparable harm to individuals and communities. Nearly half of the people in US federal prisons serving sentences for drug offences are Black and almost 60 percent are Latino. This doesn’t include those in state prisons and local jails, where the disproportionate impact on communities is even clearer. (Talking Drugs, UK, 04.06.2020)



Unter ethnischem Profiling sind selektive ordnungsbehördliche Kontrollen zu verstehen, die aufgrund von Kriterien wie Ethnizität, Rasse, Religion und nationaler Herkunft, nicht jedoch aufgrund des persönlichen Verhaltens bzw. objektiver Indizien vorgenommen werden. (Open Society Foundations, Justice Initiative, 2020)


Singapur. Malaysian man sentenced to death in Singapore via Zoom call

Punithan Genasan, a 37-year-old Malaysian, received the sentence for his role in a 2011 heroin transaction. (Al Jazeera, Katar, 20.05.2020)


Stigma and the Toll of Addiction

Nora D. Volkow, M.D., April 2, 2020
N Engl J Med 2020; 382:1289-1290, DOI: 10.1056/NEJMp1917360


Stigmatising attitudes towards people who inject drugs, and people living with blood borne viruses or sexually transmissible infections in a representative sample of the Australian population.

Broady TR, Brener L, Cama E, Hopwood M, Treloar C (2020) 

PLoS ONE 15(4): e0232218. doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0232218


Association of Racial/Ethnic Segregation With Treatment Capacity for Opioid Use Disorder in Counties in the United States.

Goedel WC, Shapiro A, Cerdá M, Tsai JW, Hadland SE, Marshall BDL.

JAMA Netw Open. 2020 Apr 1;3(4):e203711. doi: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.3711.


Addressing the Stigma that Surrounds Addiction

Untreated drug and alcohol use contribute to tens of thousands of deaths every year and impact the lives of many more. Healthcare already has effective tools including medications for opioid and alcohol use disorder that could prevent many of these deaths, but they are not being utilized widely enough, and many people who could benefit do not even seek them out. One important reason is the stigma that surrounds people with addiction. (NIDA, Noras’s blog, USA, 22.04.2020)


Language and stigmatization of individuals with mental illness or substance addiction in the Netherlands: An experimental vignette study. 

Martinelli, TF, Meerkerk, G‐J, Nagelhout, GE, et al.

Health Soc Care Community. 2020; 00: 1– 10. doi.org/10.1111/hsc.12973


The Real Harms of Abusive, Stigmatizing Language in Addiction Treatment

(Filter, USA, 11.03.2020)


The Death Penalty for Drug Offences 2019

Harm Reduction International (HRI) has monitored the use of the death penalty for drug offences worldwide since our first ground-breaking publication on this issue in 2007. This report, our ninth on the subject, continues our work of providing regular updates on legislative, policy and practical developments related to the use of capital punishment for drug offences, a practice which is a clear violation of international law. (HRI – Harm Reduction International, März 2020)


Worldwide, Executions for Drug-Law Violations Are Increasing Again

(…) Executions for drug-law violations are increasing globally, says a new report from Harm Reduction International (HRI). Since 2007, the organization has tracked worldwide drug-related executions, which peaked at 755 in 2015. Though executions declined to a record-low 93 in 2018, last year they increased about 31 percent, to 122. At least 3,000 people sentenced to death for drug offenses remain on death row, many of whom have been there for more than 10 years. (Filter, USA, 05.02.2020)