Law on Preventing and Combating Narcotic Drugs, 23/2000/QH10, December 9, 2000, art. 28. For individuals entering a center on a voluntary basis, the minimum period is for six months: Decree 135/2004, June 10, 2004, art. 29. Those who volunteer for detoxification at centers are not classified as being administratively sanctioned: art. 28(3).
Children can be sent to drug detention centers if they tiep bong da k+ continue using drugs having already received home and community-based detoxification or repeated education programs in their localities, or if they have no permanent accommodation. Law on Preventing and Combating Narcotic Drugs, No. 23/2000/QH10, December 9, 2000, art. 29. See also 24.
Decree 135/2004/ND-CP, June 10, 2004, art. 44 states: “Outside of the time spent on education, treatment, adolescent (patients) must participate in therapeutic labor as organized by the Centers for Social Treatment – Education,” [translation by Human Rights Watch].
See V. Nguyen and M. Scannapieco, “Drug abuse in Vietnam: a critical review of the literature and implications for future research,” Addiction, vol. 103 (2008) pp. 535-543; R. Ray, “Commentary: National drug abuse situation in Vietnam- how accurate are the projections?,” Addiction, vol. 103 (2008) pp. 544-545.
A government report profiling the detainees in Ho Chi Minh City centers in 2007 states that 92.3 percent were male and 7.7 percent were female. 88.7 percent were aged between 18 and 35 and 3.49 percent were aged under 18. 47.8 percent had completed middle schooling, while 21.6 percent had completed high school. 99 percent were heroin users. See Government of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, “Report to the National Assembly on the result of five years’ implementation of Decree No. 16/2003/QH11 on ‘Post rehab monitoring, vocational training and job placement’,” May 5, 2008, appendix 2b [translation by Human Rights Watch].
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