World Drug Day 2023: Theme, History, Importance and More about drug abuse

The purpose of this World Drug Day 2023 campaign is to spread awareness of the significance of treating people using drugs with respect and compassion

World Drug Day 2023

World Drug Day 2023. Photo: Shutterstock

Sonika Nitin Nimje New Delhi
Every year on June 26, the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking or World Drug Day is observed to encourage more action and cooperation toward a drug-free world.

The goal of the day is to make people aware of how important it is to treat people who use drugs with respect and empathy. It emphasises voluntary, evidence-based services for everyone and offers alternatives to punishment. The day also emphasises prevention and a compassionate approach to the problem. It also motivates citizens to address and combat drug users' stigma and discrimination by encouraging respectful language and non-judgmental attitudes.

World Drug Day 2023: History 

On December 7, 1987, the General Assembly of the United Nations decided to make June 26 International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking. This was done to help them achieve their goal of a drug-free society. Since 1988, it has been held every year on June 26, a date chosen to encourage individuals and communities to take proactive measures against drug abuse and drug trafficking.

World Drug Day 2023: Theme

The day's theme is announced by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), which serves as the focus of global events and discussions. The UNODC has chosen  'People First: Ending Stigma and Discrimination, Strengthening Prevention' as the theme for World Drug Day 2023 because of the global complexity of drug-related issues, which affect millions of people. 

World Drug Day 2023: Importance

The global drug problem is a complex issue that affects millions of people all over the world. A lot of people who use drugs face discrimination and stigma, which hurts their physical and mental health and makes it harder for them to get the help they need. 

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) recognizes the significance of utilising a people-centred approach to drug policies that places an emphasis on human rights, compassion, and practices that are supported by evidence.

First Published: Jun 26 2023 | 12:51 PM IST

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