World Drug Day 2023: Addressing the problem of drug abuse and illicit trafficking of drugs

The International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, also known as World Drug Day, is observed with the objective to bolster action and cooperation to make the world free of drug abuse. It is celebrated every year on the 26th of June by people all over the world. On this day, individuals, communities, and organizations all over the world come together in order to help raise consciousness of the major threat that illegitimate drugs pose to society. This article provides major details related to World Drug Day 2023 including its history, significance, celebration, and much more.

World Drug Day 2023 Date

Below mentioned are the upcoming dates for World Drug Day for the upcoming 5 years.

World Drug Day 2023June 26, 2023Monday
World Drug Day 2024June 26, 2024Wednesday
World Drug Day 2025June 26, 2025Thursday
World Drug Day 2026June 26, 2026Friday
World Drug Day 2027June 26, 2027Saturday

World Drug Day 2023 Overview

EventWorld Drug Day 2023, International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking 2023
DateJune 26, 2023
Proposed byUnited Nations
Observed byWorldwide
Purpose of celebrationTo strengthen action and cooperation in achieving a world free of drug abuse.

Significance of World Drug Day

The General Assembly decided to observe the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking to strengthen action to create a society that is completely free of the harmful effects of the drugs. This global observance aims to raise awareness of the major problem that illicit drugs represent to society. The day calls upon governments, civil society, international organizations, and all stakeholders to take urgent action to protect people by tackling the problem of illicit drug supply all over the world. The day also provides a platform to share research findings, evidence-based data, and solutions to continue working in this direction with more solidarity.

History of International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking

The issue of illicit drug trafficking has been recognized as a global problem since the start of the 20th century. In fact, the first international conference on narcotic drugs was held in Shanghai back in 1909 to find a global solution to this problem. To handle the problem in a systematic way, a multi-layer solution to control the production, trafficking, and abuse of drugs has constantly been developed.

On December 7, 1987, the United Nations General Assembly adopted resolution 42/112 designating 26 June as the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking. Since then, every year June 26 has been observed as World Drug Day by people and organizations all over the world.

See: Other Special Days in June

Observation of World Drug Day 2023

The regional and support offices of UNODC all across the globe celebrate World Drug Day by presenting the crucial findings of the World Drug Report in front of the people. Different civil society organizations take this day as an opportunity to work together to provide sociological and medical services to people who use drugs. Many open discussions and photo exhibits are also organized on the occasion of International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.

As an individual, you can spread awareness of illicit drug trafficking and its consequences among your friends, family, and peers. Learn more about the threat that illicit drugs can bring to individuals and nations. Try raising awareness with the help of a small event or if any such event is organized in your locality, be a part of it.

Theme for World Drug Day 2023

A theme is decided for the celebration of World Drug Day every year. The theme of year 2023 is “People first: stop stigma and discrimination, strengthen prevention”. You can also check out the themes for the past 5 years in the table below.

2022Addressing drug challenges in health and humanitarian crises
2021Share facts on drugs. Save lives.
2020Better Knowledge for Better Care
2019Health for Justice. Justice for Health
2018Listen First – Listening to children and youth is the first step to help them grow healthy and safe

Frequently Asked Questions

When do we celebrate World Drug Day?

June 26 every year

What is UNODC?

United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime

What does UNODC do?

It addresses the problem of illicit drug use and transnational crime.

1 thought on “World Drug Day 2023: Addressing the problem of drug abuse and illicit trafficking of drugs”

  1. Some years back, the theme for the celebration of WDD came out quite early unlike what is obtained recently. The early announcement of the yearly theme is important as it allows Nations to conclude preparation with regards the preparation of education, communication and communication materials and getting stakeholders on board for the celebration. Lat release of the theme hampers early planning and implementation and limits the active involvement of stakeholders. I am strongly of the view that this should be looked into please. Thank you.


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