Drug User Unions -Globally

Drug User Unions Worldwide:  An Evolving List –

created Aug 2014, thanks to http://inpud.net

Regional Groups and Networks:

  • Asian Network of People who Use Drugs (ANPUD) | www.anpud.org
  • Eurasian Harm Reduction Network | www.harm-reduction.org
  • Eurasian Network of People who Use Drugs (ENPUD) | www.enpud.org
  • European Network of People who Use Drugs (EuroNPUD)
  • Latin America Network of People who Use Drugs (LANPUD) | www.lanpud.blogspot.co.uk
  • Middle East and North Africa Network of People who Use Drugs (MENANPUD)

Country Networks:

  • Afghanistan drug user group (ADUG), Kabul
  • Australian Injecting and Illicit Drug Users League (AIVL) is the national peak organisation representing the state and territory drug user organisations and issues of national significance for people who use or have used illicit drugs.www.aivl.org.au
  • L’ADDICQ (Association pour la Défense des Droits et l’Inclusion des personnes qui Consomment des drogues du Québec) www.linjecteur.ca/addicq
  • Manitoba Area Network of Drug Users (MANDU) Winnipeg, Manitoba. www.mandu.undun.org
  • Meta Dame, an organisation of current and former methadone patients and drug users, operating in Montreal, Quebec. www.metadame.org
  • Unified Network of Drug Users Nationally (UNDUN ) www.undun.org
  • Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users (VANDU ) is a group of users and former users who work to improve the lives of people who use illicit drugs through user-based peer support and education. www.vandu.org
  • UHO Croatian Drug Users Union. Croatia’s self help drug users organisation with a website covering a wide range of drug user specific health, drug and harm reduction information. www.uho.hr
  • Danish Drug Users Union/BrugerForeningen. The Danish Drug Users Unions official website, with news, reports, harm reduction, treatment information, guest writers and bloggers, opiate museum and national drug news.www.brugerforeningen.dk
  • The French Organisation for Drug Users /HIV /Auto-Support des Usagers de Drogues (ASUD). ASUD (Self-Support for Drug Users) The French organisation that works to support the reduction in risk to people who use drugs.www.asud.org
  • JES (Junkies, ex-user People in Opiate Substitution Treatment) is the German Network for drug users and one of the oldest drug user networks in the world, founded 1989. www.jes-bundesverband.de
  • German Drug Users Union www.vision-ev.de
  • Greek Drug & Substitute Users Union, defending the rights of people who use drugs, to promote harm reduction policies and antiprohibition www.okanatherapevomenoi.blogspot.gr
  • Indian Drug Users’ Forum (IDUF) www.facebook.com/groups/266420433372977/
  • Inner Voice of Drug Users, Chennai City www.ivdu.blogspot.com
  • Humanitarian Organization for Progress & Empowerment (HOPE) is a community based organization of injecting drugs user in the Churachandpur, Manipur.
  • Community Network for Empowerment (CONE) Manipur, is a network of community based organisations/groups of people who use drugs in Manipur www.conemanipur.net
  • IKON Bali Drug Users Organisation www.ikonbali.org
  • PERFORMA – Central Java Network of People who Use Drugs
  • Persaudaraan Korban Napza Indonesia (PKNI) is a network of drug user organizations which was established based on the concerns of the victims of drug policy upon stigma, violence, discrimination and violations of Human Rights towards people who use drugs. www.pkni.org
  • Stigma Foundation for Drug Users Rights www.stigmafoundation.blogspot.com
  • Drug users Organisation MDHG/Belangenvereniging voor druggebruikers MDHG, Amsterdam www.mdhg.nl
  • Drug Users Union / Landelijk Steunpunt Druggebruikers (LSD) www.lsd.nl
  • Association of People Living with HIV (APLHIV) Pakistan. To Ensure that PLHIVS have equal rights and live with dignity/peace,like other members of society. www.facebook.com/APLHIV
  • WYZWOLENIE: Krakow Association of Substitution Patients (Also known as LIBERATION) WYZWOLENIE is run by users and people on drug treatment, who are working voluntarily to make the human rights of drug users more visible and understandable to people who use drugs, health professionals and government.www.wyzwolenie.weebly.com
  • Union for Improved Services, Communication & Education (UISCE) drug user organisation based in Dublin, Ireland. Their main function is to articulate as best they can, the issues affecting people who use drugs towards informing and changing policy and practice. www.facebook.com/BrassMunkie
  • Russian Drug User Organisation – Moscow www.drugusers.ru
  • KOLODETZ An advocacy organization with the main goal to defend rights of people affected by drug epidemic and drug policy in Russia: active and former drug users, people with HIV/AIDS, their families, and youth in general.www.drugpolicy.ru

Add your organisation in the  comments section below with your website, FB or blog  link and we will add ya here!

Peer-Run Organizations of People Who Use Drugs

In Canada

CAPUD Canadian Association of People Who Use Drugs 
AAWEAR Alberta Addicts Who Advocate and Educate Responsibly 

AQPSUD l’Association Québécoise pour la promotion de la santé des personnes utilisatrices de drogues 

BCAPOM BC Association of People on Methadone 

BCYADWS BC/Yukon Association of Drug War Survivors

DUAL Drug Users Advocacy League (Ottawa)

MANDU Manitoba Drug Users

Méta d’Âme Association of People Using Opiates in Quebec

REDUN Rural Empowered Drug Users Network (Nelson and Grand Forks, BC)

SOLID Society of Living Illicit Drug Users (Victoria, BC)

TDUU Toronto Drug Users Union

UNDUN Unified Network of Drug Users Nationally

VANDU Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users

WAHRS Western Aboriginal Harm Reduction Society



Leave a comment


  1. Marios Atzemis

     /  January 18, 2017

    There is a new users union in Greece, Athens based, called Peer Network of Substance Users. I am a member and also a harm reduction worker in the Greek Association of People Living with HIV/AIDS, ”Positive Voice” If you want more information you can contact me in my email

  2. Please change the old blog address of ours.
    In the indian section the updated address is http://www.ivdusers.blogspot.in
    Thank you.

  3. Rico

     /  June 19, 2016

    I am a tireless activist for harm reduction in snohomish county WA. I Help anyone but focus on my reservation.I personally wrote our 911 good samaritan law and named it after my Mom (its stronger than any in U.S.) advocated to the people and lobbied to our board of directors and got it passed. I volunteered at aids outreach syringe exchange and convinced them to focus more on the Tulalip reservation. I lobbied to our pharmacy to carry naloxone and got it then led a social media campaign to promote average citizens to carry it. Ive saved lives help me save more. Please look at my Gofundme account and consider advertising it.


  4. Under organizations: National Alliance for Medication Assisted Recovery (NAMA-R) http://www.methadone.org, New York, NY Chapters through the US and international affiliates on website. Under Peer Run Organizations: The MARS Project (a NAMA-R project with 17 others in the US and Vietnam) http://www.marsproject.org, Bronx, NY.

  5. You have the National Urban Survivor’s Union but we have started a chapter in North Carolina NC- Urban Survivor’s Union!!! The first drug user union in the US south!

  6. Hi, I’m writing an article about the importance of drug user unions and why the UK should have them. Could you perhaps give me a reason why the UK should have drug user unions that I can use as quote in my article? You’d be massively helping me out 🙂

    • Hi Joe,
      We need a drug user union in the UK, just like in many other parts of the world. Whilst a trade union’s primary role is to represent their members on employment issues, a drug user union has often emerged in a country to focus on issues affecting drug users in treatment. And just like a workers union would fight for better pay and working conditions, a drug users union focuses at least half of their energy on ensuring drug users in treatment get treated fairly, humanely, and equally – like anyone else who is a consumer of a health service. Historically, drug treatment in the UK has varied widely in its ability to reflect the needs of its client group and has often been modelled on extremely punitive, isolating and demoralising approaches to treating drug use. The most widely used approach has always been the ‘Carrot and Stick’ model, where users are rewarded with privileges for compliance. This often means permitting take home doses of methadone if users choose to ‘get with the programme’ and show it by presenting no positive urine samples. The Carrot. The stick happens when users are punished punitively when they ‘fail’. This has varied from the inexplicable; a reduction in ones prescription (just when they are showing they perhaps need an increase) to the common; drink your methadone supervised -which can mean humiliatingly at the chemist in front of everybody. But anyone who fully understands drug dependence in all its complexity, will know that punishments make no hay when it comes to the decision, or the overwhelming need to use drugs. In fact punishments often simply isolate the person further and drive them deeper into their dependence/addiction. People become resentful, unable to confide in the people who are supposed to be supporting them, and simply lose the resources, the motivation and the knowledge about how to make the changes they wanted to when they started the programme. 20 years ago when ‘user involvement started in the UK, we were coming out of the dark ages in terms of drug treatment. Today, with a high degree of user involvement around the country, things have been much better for the average drug user in treatment. But success in the UK has been patchy to say the least, and todays political ideology that directs the funding wand has caused not only cut backs in drug treatment but has created a whole series of new problems, problems which are ripe for a drug user union to tackle.

      The UK needs independent union/s for drug users simply because they must have an independent voice in their treatment which affects, like a work or a trade union, a huge part of ones daily life. Much of todays user involvement is now suffering from the left turn it took many years ago to follow the money (and sometimes the support as well, both are understandable to some degree) and get into bed with the health authorities they needed to have clear heads about. This has not only influenced some of the decisions such groups have made, sometimes at the expense of their communities, but has now left them defenseless to big budget cuts in the health service, money which is no longer ring-fenced to protect drug treatment. Drug User Groups that have spent years working, often for no pay, sometimes doing or supporting much of the work of professionals, have, at the stroke of a pen, been vanquished. Thanks for all the work mate, but seeya later. Perhaps if we had set up as unions, even to the extent where users who wanted to join could pay there dues with the knowledge that they were getting something for their money; positive change, we would have a strong lead and vision for the way we want drug treatment to go in this country, a direction which is centred around the needs of the client, not the government, and not the key-worker or consultant. The client who is, after all supporting a massive industry of jobs, careers and reputations.

      But drug user unions have a much bigger part to play in civil society. Unions can offer educational, lifelong learning and training opportunities to their members, just like real unions.
      Historically, unions have not only negotiated for and championed better workplace rights with employers but for a better deal for working people in the wider world. Having battled to extend the right to vote, it was the unions that created a political party that working people could vote for – the Labour Party. It is perfectly possible, as is reflected in perhaps one of the world’s most brilliant Drug User Unions, The Swedish User Union, for drug users to become directly influential in a country’s national politics; becoming to Go To organisation on drug related issues: Nothing About Us Without Us – the slogan for the drug user movement. So yes, the collected strength and political ability of the English user movement is perhaps at a bit of a crossroads, or on a cliff edge, or even a sinking boat. It has only to look to its brethren in Scotland and Ireland (north and south) to see shining examples of cohesive and effective partnership working and union values, forging better and more humane drug policies in various sectors like health, criminal justice, treatment etc. But the space is empty for a unified user voice in England, the seat is up, the pantry littered with almosts and nearlies. Yet the values of a drug user union are urgently needed today. For those drug users still struggling with substandard or punitive treatment, poor engagement opportunities, or one size fits all care, it is just as much needed for the society we live in, the drug policies that desperately need our thoughts, creativity and input, the solutions to community drug issues that only we as drug users can really pinpoint and tackle effectively. But thats not all. What about unions at work? All the unpaid hours we do to better our communities as harm reduction and recovery workers, all the glass ceilings we encounter despite our enormous skill and ability. Indeed Canada has recently ensured its harm reduction workers have been able to come together under a union banner as the Harm Reduction Workers Union, a really marvellous idea that is also primed as a template for other countries to adopt. And while history tells us that England, indeed Britain, has always been a rather tribal country, with tribal interests and cultures that still affect the way shires and counties do things, it will be basic union values that are able to touch a common core through all that diversity, and hopefully, bring us home to a unified drug user movement, solid and secure with our UK brethren, allied in defence of ever more humane drug policies for our societies and a vision of innovative and responsive drug treatment that is driven forward by equally by ex/current drug users and a diverse group of dedicated others. All leading our communities down the road ahead, right across Britain today. Erin O’Mara


We try and reply as soon as we can but please understand it might take anywhere from 1 day to 1 month, but we will always try our best. Mark URGENT if you require a fast reply. Thanks for your understanding!

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