General Comment No. 3 on HIV and the Rights of the Child (CRC/GC/2003/3)

39. The use of substances, including alcohol and drugs, may reduce the ability of children to exert control over their sexual conduct and, as a result, may increase their vulnerability to HIV infection. Injecting practices using unsterilized instruments further increase the risk of HIV transmission. …In most countries, children have not benefited from pragmatic HIV prevention programmes related to substance use, which even when they do exist have largely targeted adults. The Committee wishes to emphasize that policies and programmes aimed at reducing substance use and HIV transmission must recognize the particular sensitivities and lifestyles of children, including adolescents, in the context of HIV/AIDS prevention. Consistent with the rights of children under articles 33 and 24 of the Convention, States parties are obligated to ensure the implementation of programmes which aim to reduce the factors that expose children to the use of substances, as well as those that provide treatment and support to children who are abusing substances.
  • Harm reduction

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See also articles 33 (drugs) and 24 (health) of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

In a relatively early General Comment the CRC Committee makes clear the need for harm reduction interventions relating to injecting drug use and HIV among children and young people to be developed.

  • Harm reduction