Harm Reduction

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Harm Reduction

Harm Reduction

Harm reduction is a range of evidence-based approaches that recognize that people unable or unwilling to abstain from illicit drug use can still make positive choices to protect their own health in addition to the health of their families and communities. The Open Society Foundations advocate for policies and practices that advance the health and human rights of people who use drugs.

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Programs

The following Open Society programs focus on this topic.

More on the ideas and programs behind our work: Harm Reduction. Hide info

Recent Work

Voices
Putting Rio de Janeiro’s Maré on the Map  

For decades, Maré, Rio de Janeiro’s largest favela, was impossible to find on a map. But thanks in part to a local development association, its residents aren’t invisible anymore—and are ready to defend their human rights.

Voices
The World Must Learn from Hong Kong’s Example

While many policymakers work to control heroin dependence, Hong Kong stands out. A new report explains why—and offers lessons to public officials hoping to follow its example.

Voices
The War on Drugs Is Holding Science Back

The Schedule 1 drug law classification used by the United Kingdom and the United States slows scientific knowledge and human progress in the name of a discredited approach to regulating drugs.

Event
Drugs in Documentary Films: A Showcase

The Open Society Foundations and PBS POV present an evening of excerpts from new documentary films exploring a range of harmful effects created by the current drug control regime.

Event
Talking About Race: Harm Reduction and Communities of Color

A discussion on the historical tensions between drug policy advocates and communities of color, which have carried the heaviest burden in both health consequences and punitive criminal justice responses to drug use.

Voices
How Drug Courts Are Falling Short

The “drug court” alternative-sentencing model has spread across the United States. It may be increasingly common, but the drug court model often fails to respect human rights.