On the 26 of June 2016, the Turks and Caicos Islands joined the rest of the world
in observing International Day Against Drug Abuse & Illicit Trafficking. This is an
annual event that was first publicized and promoted by the United Nations Drug
Program in 1987. Every year since then the United Nations Office on Drugs and
Crime has set aside this day to create awareness of the global epidemic of the
use, abuse and trafficking of illegal drugs. Member States and participating
countries are encouraged to observe the day by highlighting the harmful effects
of alcohol and illicit drug use and building awareness among residents to
ultimately bring about a reduction in the demand for drugs.
Activities have already begun throughout the Islands under the theme “Listen
First” The theme calls for increased support for prevention of drug use and a
focus on the well-being of children and youth, their families and their
Illicit drugs threaten people's health and welfare. In 2007, the World Health
Organization reported that, in terms of overall death rates, death by drugs or
alcohol were estimated at approximately 1.8 million deaths worldwide each
year, and about half of those deaths were the result of injury.
Alcohol and Illicit drug use can lead to chronic alcohol consumption which
negatively affects almost every system in the body and can lead to cancer, liver
disease, heart attacks and brain damage among others. Additionally, alcohol use
has been found to serve as a gate way to the use of other illicit drugs.
Activities to commemorate International Day against Drug Abuse include the
❖ A series of educational sessions in various communities including rap
sessions with young people about the dangers of drugs and information
sessions with guidance counselors and community group leaders, 23 rd –
28 th June
❖ Distribution of anti-drug materials 24 th June
❖ Airing of drug prevention PSA’s and appearances on various radio and
Your support of these activities is greatly appreciated.
For further information on the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit
Trafficking, kindly contact the Department of Mental Health and Substance
Dependence within the Ministry of Health, Agriculture and Human Services at:
338-3613 Grand Turk
338-6301 South Caicos