Laws criminalizing drug possession can cause more harm

By Tenu Avafia, Team Leader, Rights, Law and Treatment Access, HIV, Health and Development and Rebecca Schleifer, Consultant, HIV, Human Rights and the Law

In many countries, a criminal record, even for a minor offense, can have serious implications. Being convicted of a crime makes you ineligible for certain jobs, social programmes or benefits or from even being able to exercise your right to vote.

A criminal record can also severely limit the ability to travel to certain countries and can result in the loss of custody of minor children. As prison conditions are often poor and health care services limited, a custodial sentence can have negative impacts on the person's health.


We Cannot Achieve Gender Equality without Drug Policy Reform

By Patrick Tindana, Consultant, UNDP

On 27th September, 2015, UN Member States adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, including 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These ambitious goals aim to “end poverty and hunger…to ensure that all human beings can fulfill their potential in dignity and equality...” by 2030.  Notably, governments also committed to “reaching the furthest behind first”.  It follows then that, in order to realize these goals, women who use drugs and or who are marginalized by the current drug control systems deserve specific attention.


The latest issue of our Newsletter - December 2015 - is out!

The latest issue of our Newsletter - December 2015 - is out! Follow the link below to get caught up on updates and key developments related to HIV and the law. In this issue you'll find a compilation of recent news articles and stories of implementation of the recommendations of the Global Commission on HIV and the Law, with links to access the full articles on the web.

Read the Newsletter

Strengthening the use of competition law to promote access to health technologies LMICs

By Les Ong, Consultant, UNDP Bangkok Regional Hub

Promoting competition within the pharmaceutical market has proven to be an effective strategy in reducing the price and increasing the availability of essential medicines. The introduction of generic medicines led to significant reductions in the price of HIV treatment, which has contributed to the remarkable increase in HIV treatment coverage. In 2000, HIV treatment was priced at US$ 10,000 per patient per year, but competition from generic introduction has reduced prices dramatically. Most recently, UNDP has been able to procure HIV treatments for below US$100 per patient per year.


UN Secretary-General's High-Level Panel on Access to Medicines Issues Call for Contributions

The United Nations Secretary-General's High-Level Panel on Access to Medicines is inviting contributions for consideration that address the policy incoherence between international human rights law, trade rules and public health objectives regarding the innovation of and access to health technologies. In particular the High-Level Panel will consider contributions that promote research, development, innovation and increase access to medicines, vaccines, diagnostics and related health technologies to improve the health and wellbeing for all, as envisaged by Sustainable Development Goal 3, and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development more broadly.