Last Updated: Thursday, 27 November 2014, 13:39 GMT

UN expert urges Viet Nam to close compulsory rehabilitation centres for sex workers

Publisher UN News Service
Publication Date 5 December 2011
Cite as UN News Service, UN expert urges Viet Nam to close compulsory rehabilitation centres for sex workers, 5 December 2011, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4eddfc2a2.html [accessed 27 November 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.
A United Nations expert urged Viet Nam today to close down its compulsory rehabilitation centres for sex workers and drug users, stressing that detention and forced treatment violate their right to health and perpetuate stigmatization and discrimination of those groups in the society.

"Detainees are denied the right to be free from non-consensual treatment as well as the right to informed consent in all medically related decisions," said Special Rapporteur on the right to health Anand Grover, who concluded his visit to the country today.

Mr. Grover called the practices "ineffective and I wholeheartedly support the closure of the rehabilitation centres.counterproductive," and encouraged the Government to close down the centres and instead support its population's participation in formulating and implementing all decisions regarding their health.

"I wholeheartedly support the closure of the rehabilitation centres," said Mr. Grover. "It is essential to ensure that the considerable resources now invested in these centres are used instead to expand alternative treatments for injecting drug users."

Mr. Grover praised the Government for starting pilot community-based initiatives and methadone programmes, which help reduce withdrawal symptoms in drug users and are "less costly and more effective in reducing drug use and facilitating the reintegration of injecting drug users back into the society."

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