The state of harm reduction in Eastern Europe and Central Asia
Harm Reduction Journal invites you to submit to the new thematic series: The state of harm reduction in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, to be launched at the 2018 International AIDS Conference in Amsterdam, 23-27 July 2018.
Eastern Europe and Central Asia are facing ongoing epidemics of opioid use and overdose. Region-wide, the opioid epidemic is fueling a HCV epidemic and threatening progress on stemming HIV morbidity and mortality, particularly among people who inject drugs (PWID). Driven by injection drug use, Central Asian countries are currently experiencing the world’s fastest growing HIV incidence. PWID are the most criminalized among key groups and are most vulnerable to discrimination and violations of rights by the law enforcement authorities and medical workers. Many PWID, as well as people living with HIV, are in prisons, where there are cases of violation of their rights, including the right to access to health services. Stigma, lack of documentation, inability to get insurance and be registered with health facilities create barriers to access to services in HIV prevention, treatment, care and support. Illegal law enforcement practices, as well as myths and stereotypes that jeopardize access of key populations with risky behavior to prevention and treatment that leads to hidden spread of HIV in those communities. Drug treatment remains hard to access for injection drug users and is even less accessible to women who use drugs because of public stigma, which discourages them from seeking help. Among the PWID community, women remain the most vulnerable. Violence against this group is systemic, and perpetrated by individuals and some government agencies’ staff, including police, whose primary mission should be the protection of their rights and providing them with services regardless to their background, behavioral specifics and other factors. Violence by law enforcement officers is one of the reasons for the mistrust of women who use drugs towards state officials and their unwillingness to appeal for police help in case of violence.
Against this backdrop of continuing crisis, it is timely now to review progress – or lack of progress - in implementation of harm reduction policies and programs in the EECA regions.
This thematic series in Harm Reduction Journal seeks to examine this neglected and timely topic. We invite you to consider submitting your paper(s) on any aspect of substance use, blood-borne infections and harm reduction in the Eastern European and Central Asian regions – research, review, policy, commentary, history – for consideration for publication in this thematic series.
All articles in this series will undergo the journal’s full standard peer review process. Manuscripts should be formatted according to Harm Reduction Journal submission guidelines and may be submitted through Editorial Manager.
In the submission system please make sure the correct collection title is chosen. Please also indicate in the covering letter that the manuscript is to be considered for “The state of harm reduction in Eastern Europe and Central Asia” thematic series. Submissions are invited until 31st May 2018. For further information, please contact the Editors.
The series will be edited by Frederick Altice (Yale School of Medicine, USA).
Flipping the iceberg on gambling harm reduction and prevention: Challenges, opportunities, and pathways to policy reform.
Gambling is now a well recognised public health issue. Gambling products are readily accessible and available, open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with individuals able to gamble, and lose more money on high intensity products than ever before. While some countries have adopted a public health approach to gambling, many harm reduction policies focus on ‘responsible gambling’, rather than addressing the range of individual, socio-cultural, environmental, industry, and political factors that may contribute to harmful gambling.
The following thematic series of Harm Reduction Journal aims to understand the range of factors that may be contributing to gambling harm, and strategies to ensure that comprehensive policies are implemented to reduce, and ultimately prevent this harm. In particular, the series seeks to understand the challenges facing gambling harm prevention and reduction, and to provide a range of strategies to prevent and reduce gambling harm.
We invite a broad range of papers for this special edition which will coincide with the International Gambling Conference 2018: Flipping the iceberg on gambling harm, mental health, and co-existing conditions. The conference is co-hosted by the AUT Gambling Addictions and Research Centre, and the Problem Gambling Foundation of New Zealand (http://www.internationalgamblingconference.com/).
All papers should directly address the implications of their research for gambling harm prevention or reduction. Papers will be reviewed and published as soon as accepted. Deadline for submissions is 31 May 2018.
The series will be edited by Samantha Thomas (Centre for Population Health Research, Deakin University, Australia) and Maria Bellringer (Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand).