The United Nations' (UN) International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking falls on June 26 each year to raise awareness of the major problem that illicit drugs represent to society. This day is supported by individuals, communities and various organizations all over the world.
The Ministry of National Security and the National Council on Drug abuse joined the world in celebrating International Day against drug abuse and illicit trafficking, with its own set of activities.
The day was observed by posting anti-drug and anti -trafficking messages on their websites and Social Media pages. This forms part of the organizations' broader sensitization and public education campaign on drug related issues.
During the day, an outside broadcast was facilitated by the RJR News network that featured interviews and features about the drug phenomenon and its impact on Jamaica. Interviewees included personnel from drug prevention, drug seizures, law enforcement and local NGO's . The public was also invited to give their opinion about the drug abuse and trafficking problems in Jamaica.
The day brought public awareness of the mandates of the agencies in Jamaica that are responsible for drug prevention and control:
Locally, the National Council on Drug Abuse (NCDA) continues to coordinate and guide the GoJ prevention, treatment and rehabilitation efforts against drug use and abuse through its various programmes.
The Transnational Crime and Narcotics Division also coordinates and supervises all major drug investigations and seizures in the island. Targeted areas include ganja eradication; vehicle checkpoints; and air and sea ports.
A Public Education Strategy has been developed and an Anti-Drug Mule Awareness Campaign is being rolled out on a phased basis beginning with a three month mass media campaign that was recently implemented.
The public was made aware of the comprehensive approach also being employed to address the range of drug related challenges through implementation of strategic policies, between drug abuse/use prevention activities, and supply reduction initiatives.