By Florian Scheiben
There exists a lack of published academic research with and for young people who use drugs, including research focused on harm reduction. This is despite a majority of the global population of people who use illicit drugs being adolescents and young people—according to the latest (2018) statistics provided by the UN World Drug report—and the fact that they are disproportionately impacted by a range of drug- and drug policy-related harms. Sub-optimal services for young people exacerbate this. Youth-specific harm reduction programs, general service providers, policymakers and peers would all benefit from more perspectives and data from youth who use drugs.
To help address this shortfall, the Harm Reduction Journal—a peer-reviewed publication established in 2004 and affiliated with Harm Reduction International, the National Harm Reduction Coalition and the Eurasian Harm Reduction Association—is partnering with Youth RISE and Filter for a special series: “Young People, Drugs and Harm Reduction.” We are now seeking research submissions with a view to publishing this work throughout the coming year. We will also be holding a number of events with authors to discuss their research and findings with the wider community.
The initiative, partially funded by the Robert Carr Fund, aims to center the voices of young people who use drugs and include them in the scientific process. It aims to address evidence gaps by providing an academic forum to highlight the diverse voices of young drug users in research, service delivery and policy formation. It also seeks to identify how certain barriers currently prevent the publication of such research.
Please consider submitting your work on “Young People, Drugs and Harm Reduction” to this special series, and spread the word amongst your colleagues and partner organizations to do the same. The submission platform can be accessed here; please read the submission guidelines first. Please ensure the correct collection series title is chosen from the “additional information” tab, and also indicate in the covering letter that the manuscript is to be considered for the “Young People, Drugs and Harm Reduction” thematic series. For more information, please feel free to contact the editors of the Harm Reduction Journal.
Submissions close on September 21, 2021.