In detention centers all over Vietnam, some 40,000 men, women, and children are being held against their will and forced to labor for the Vietnamese government. The victims are held without a hearing or a trial in a court of law in drug detention centers on suspicion of using illegal drugs. Most detainees are picked up in “street sweeps” or on the basis of a single positive urine test. Even those who enter the centers voluntarily in the hopes of getting help for addictions are not allowed to leave. Many are held for up to five years of forced labor, often to produce goods for private companies. As the US Trade Representative negotiates with Vietnam to further open US markets to their products through the Trans-Pacific Partnership, we call on the USTR to denounce compulsory drug detention, and to demand that Vietnam permanently close the forced labor centers.
© Julian Wainwright photography
For more information, see the Human Rights Watch report, The Rehab Archipelago: Forced Labor and Other Abuses in Drug Detention Centers in Southern Vietnam.