15 March - World Consumer Rights Day15 March - World Consumer Rights Day

Posted by The Open Page | 15/3/2020

 Every year 15th March is celebrated as the World Consumer Rights Day.

World Consumer Rights Day was inspired by President John F Kennedy, who sent a special message to the US Congress on 15th March 1962, in which he formally addressed the issue of consumer rights. He was the first world leader to do so. The consumer movement first marked that date in 1983 and now uses the day every year to mobilise action on important issues and campaigns.


World Consumer Rights Day is an annual international event that signifies celebration and solidarity in the international consumer movement, demanding that, consumer rights are to be respected and protected. The event also gives a chance to protest against the market abuses and social injustices which undermine those rights.

Theme for 2020

Each year, World Consumer Rights Day adopts a theme to highlight. This year the theme promoted is "The Sustainable Consumer".

We urgently need drastic action to address the global crises of climate change and biodiversity loss. The decade of the 2020s is our last chance to limit global warming to 1.5 degree C since pre-industrial times, in line with the Paris Agreement and to reverse the current trend of wide-scale biodiversity loss.

When we look at our global consumption in numbers, we are given a stark reminder of the task ahead. Around the world, nearly one million plastic bottles are sold every minute, and five trillion pieces of plastic are floating in our oceans. We buy over 80 billion new clothing items a year, and consume 3.9 billion tonnes of food – one-third of which is lost or wasted.

In order to protect the planet and provide fair social conditions for current and future generations, we need to think about the way we produce and consume goods and services. The aim of sustainable consumption is to increase resource efficiency and fair trade while helping to alleviate poverty and enable everyone to enjoy a good quality of life with access to food, water, energy, medicine and more.

The consumer movement will highlight the lifestyle changes consumers can make to play their part, and what governments and businesses need to do to make sustainability the easy choice for consumers.

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