International Sex Worker Rights Day

03 March

This day’s history goes back to 2001, when over 25,000 sex workers gathered in India for a festival despite efforts from prohibitionist groups who tried to prevent it taking place by pressuring the government to revoke their permit.  The event was organised by Durbar Mahila Samanwaya Committee, a Calcutta based group that has over 50,000...

International Day for Maternal Health and Rights

11 April

This day is recognized as the International Day for Maternal Health and Rights to demonstrate the urgency of increasing global action on this issue and an important tool to help the world recommit to achieving MDG 5 and take action on the Manifesto for Maternal Health Post-2015. For more information, please visit here.

International Day of the Midwife

05 May

The International Day of the Midwife is an occasion for every individual midwife to think about the many others in the profession, to make new contacts within and outside midwifery, and to widen the knowledge of what midwives do for the world. For more information, visit the WHO website.

International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, Biphobia

17 May

This day represents an annual landmark to draw the attention of decision makers, the media, the public, opinion leaders and local authorities to the alarming situation faced by lesbian, gay, bisexuals, transgender and intersex people and all those who do not conform to majority sexual and gender norms. See link for more information.

International Day to End Obstetric Fistula

23 May

The global Campaign to End Fistula is a collaborative initiative to prevent fistula and restore the health of those affected by the condition. Obstetric fistula is a hole in the birth canal caused by prolonged labor without prompt medical intervention, such as a Caesarean section. An estimated 2 to 3 million women and girls in...

International Day of Action for Women’s Health

28 May

Governments around the world are currently in the final stages of establishing the Post-2015 Development Agenda, which will include a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that will guide international development policies, priorities, and funding over the next 15 years. Throughout this and other recent global review processes, violence against women has rightly received due...

International Sex Workers Day

02 June

To mark 2nd June International Sex Worker’s Day, Stop Aids has published this factsheet on Sex Work, HIV and Human Rights. Read RHM45 paper Speaking of sex workers: how suppression of research has distorted the United States’ domestic HIV response Read RHM35 paper HIV criminalisation and sex work in Australia

World Refugee Day

20 June

This day draws the public’s attention to the millions of refugees and Internally displaced persons worldwide who have been forced to flee their homes due to war, conflict and persecution. The abuse, rape, exploitation and trafficking of women, girls and other vulnerable populations is exacerbated by conflict, flight and displacement, when family and community protections...

World Day Against Trafficking in Persons

30 July

Human trafficking is a crime that exploits women, children and men for numerous purposes including forced labour and sex. The International Labour Organization estimates that 21 million people are victims of forced labour globally. Trafficking women and children for sexual exploitation is the fastest growing criminal enterprise in the world.

World Youth Day

12 August

The engagement and participation of youth is essential to achieve sustainable human development. Yet often the opportunities for youth to engage politically, economically and socially are low or non-existent.

Global Day of Action for Access to Safe and Legal Abortion

28 September

All over the world activists, academics, clinicians, NGOs and community groups will be marking the international day of action for access to safe and legal abortion. Originating in Latin America, this has become a global event, with actions taking place on every continent including: tweetathons; public meetings; radio shows; drama and art pieces; club nights;...

International Day of Older Persons

01 October

With a growing number of older people in the world, it is time for Reproductive Health Matters to look more closely at the sexual and reproductive health of people in this different stage of life. This issue of the journal will shine a spotlight on people over 50, inviting research, policy analysis and examples of...

International Day of the Girl Child

11 October

This day recognizes girls’ rights and the unique challenges girls face around the world. In 2015, UN agencies, Member States and civil society committed to putting adolescent girls at the centre of sustainable development efforts: Invest in high quality education, skills, training, access to technology and other learning initiatives that prepare girls for life, jobs, and...

International Day of Action for Trans Depathologisation

22 October

Every October, activist groups worldwide organize activities for trans depathologization to demand the removal of the diagnostic classification of gender transition as a ‘mental disorder’ and to claim state-funded access to a trans health care of the highest attainable quality. Other relevant demands include the removal of the diagnostic classification of gender diversity in childhood,...

Intersex Awareness Day

26 October

It tells of intersex activism’s pioneering days, and the efforts those first wave intersex activists made to make public what had been denied for decades: it is a public declaration to other intersex people across the globe that they are not alone, there are people who hear you and are willing to reach out a...

International Day of Tolerance

16 November

On the day of its fiftieth anniversary, 16 November 1995, UNESCO’s Member States adopted a Declaration of Principles on Tolerance. Among other things, the Declaration affirms that tolerance is neither indulgence nor indifference. It is respect and appreciation of the rich variety of our world’s cultures, our forms of expression and ways of being human....

Transgender Day of Remembrance

20 November

The Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR) was started by transgender advocate Gwendolyn Ann Smith as a vigil to honor the memory of Rita Hester, a transgender woman who was killed in 1998. The vigil commemorated all the transgender people lost to violence that year and began an important memorial that has become the annual Transgender...

International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD)

03 December

Since 1992, the United Nations International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD) has been commemorated annually on 3 December around the world. The theme for this year’s International Day is “Achieving 17 Goals for the Future We Want”. This theme notes the recent adoption of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by the UN General...

Human Rights Day

11 December

Human Rights Day was established in 1948. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) was a shout across the world by the leading countries in the world, stating loud and clear that no matter where we live, what we believe, or how we love, we are each individually deserving of the most basic fundaments of human...


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