We use cookies to track usage and preferences

Privacy policy

On 15 March 1962, President John F Kennedy sent a special message to the US Congress in which he formally addressed the issue of consumer rights. He was the first world leader to do so, and the consumer movement now marks 15 March, with World Consumer Rights Day, every year as a means of raising global awareness about consumer rights and needs. 

President Kennedy said: 'Consumers include us all. They are the largest economic group, affecting and affected by almost every public and private economic decision. Yet they are the only important group... whose views are often not heard.'

The Issue

More than thirty years ago, Consumers International started to mark 15 March as World Consumer Rights Day, and since then the date is celebrated throughout the world as a reminder for countries to observe and enforce consumer rights and needs.

In July 2017, national consumer protection ministries and agencies reached a historic agreement on a proposal for the United Nations (UN) to make World Consumer Protection Week an official UN observance. If the proposal is adopted at the UN General Assembly later this year, Consumers International will continue to mark the 15 March as World Consumer Rights Day, within the UN recognised World Consumer Protection Week. UN recognition would be an important step towards meeting the challenge that President Kennedy set out more than 50 years ago.

Many consumers still face real challenges in their everyday lives, including a lack of access or unsafe goods and services, and unfair practices. Raising awareness of consumer rights amongst consumers, businesses and governments is an important step in helping to put consumer protection in place.

We believe that official UN recognition of World Consumer Protection Week can play a crucial part in this, helping to put consumer rights on the map of even more organisations, governments, companies and media outlets. It will help to raise awareness by engaging more people, in more activities, in more countries.

Past Themes

A truly international event, World Consumer Rights Day raises awareness of existing rights and shines a light on areas where there is inadequate consumer protection in place. Previous themes have included campaigns on:

  • basic rights
  • safe food
  • digital
  • Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO)
  • trade
  • public utilities
  • healthy diets
  • financial services
  • phone rights

Celebrated by the majority of countries around the world, activities marking the day have included media stunts, public meetings, marches, social media campaigns and the publication of test results, surveys and opinion pieces.

Learn more

What we and our members are doing:

We’re asking our members to contact their Regional Networker for more information on how to get involved in the campaign for UN recognition of World Consumer Protection Week. Formal recognition will make it easier for members to get media coverage of their activities and help to secure the participation of senior figures from government and business. It will also help to introduce consumer rights to new groups and help them realise the contribution that consumer rights can make to fairer and stronger economies, poverty reduction, improved health and safety and many other issues that affect people today. 

If you don't know them already you can find details of your regional networker here

Latest News

Governments take first step towards an official UN World Consumer Protection Week

7th July 2017

National consumer protection ministries and agencies have reached agreement on a proposal to make World Consumer Protection Week an official UN observance.

Read more

Want to learn more the @10YFP #ConsumerInformation programme for #SustainableConsumption & Production that we co-le… https://t.co/22dthdYTeb
RT @Consumers_Int: Due to a lack of #NetNeutrality, this is what internet packages in Portugal are starting to look like. This shouldn… https://t.co/mqUn3pancQ
Africa is going #mobile: mobile broadband connections expected to double in the next 5 years (via @IOL). Will regul… https://t.co/R1oc9aMoin
RT @Consumers_Int: Weekly #ProductSafety report is released! Which unsafe equipment, clothes & toys was reported in the EU last week?… https://t.co/ZMDjur0Lot
RT @Consumers_Int: International Standards can be used as tools to help implement the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development. Find ou… https://t.co/jdbUJy8ndO
25,000 EU citizens are unlikely to get compensation for Facebook’s alleged privacy violations (via @TheNextWeb) https://t.co/w9cjMeaBC6
NEW BLOG: Protecting consumers in a globalised world: time for a global approach to #ProductSafety?… https://t.co/IUC1Gpzpl5
New @FreedomHouseDC report out this week evaluating levels of #InternetFreedom for people around the world. Interes… https://t.co/vgaXoIWSz8
RT @Consumers_Int: Have you seen our interactive app? Learn how to handle antibiotics with care & help us stop the spread of… https://t.co/VC5QeuIiZG
Several popular Chinese apps called out for failing to address concerns over user privacy (via @SixthTone)… https://t.co/SRMD6P7R73
RT @Consumers_Int: One year after we exposed serious security flaws in i-Que, it is still being sold to consumers with no fixes. Time… https://t.co/jcEVJvfnYo
We want antibiotics to keep working. The EU must cut the use of these life-saving drugs in farm animals #EAAD https://t.co/xfDNnhyoZj
RT @Consumers_Int: We’ve found that, without appropriate safety features, connected toys with Bluetooth, wifi or mobile apps can pose… https://t.co/yR50YJqZ4W
Today marks the start of World Antibiotics Awareness Week! Visit the @WHO website to find out more about events tak… https://t.co/4jlQNftOOC
@choiceaustralia @mozilla @Info_Activism If you haven't seen the video and want to find out how long it took to rea… https://t.co/1gNSboxnfb
Great to see our member @choiceaustralia’s Amazon Kindle T&Cs video being showcased at the @Mozilla &… https://t.co/nEzdcGJevR
After deciding to permanently disable their Harmony Link device, @Logitech compensate owners by offering a free upg… https://t.co/NPoNU3WmoL
Consumers_Int @Consumers_Int
RT @Consumers_Int: .@Telefonica and @facebook are collaborating to tackle rural #connectivity in #Peru by combining network #tech, imp… https://t.co/xDratLG2Yf
Consumers_Int @Consumers_Int
MEMBER WIN: UK broadband providers to offer automatic compensation to customers. This comes after @WhichUK called f… https://t.co/JqORzxUKZk
Consumers_Int @Consumers_Int
‘90% of login attempts aren’t by the owner of the account’ hearing all about digital ID at @getyoti launch https://t.co/FpLQHvigOc
Consumers_Int @Consumers_Int
We’re here at the @getyoti launch event talking about our work on digital ID in peer-to-peer markets. Come and see… https://t.co/jihnXgeyAb
Consumers_Int @Consumers_Int
RT @Consumers_Int: We're in Atlanta right now @Equifax headquarters to deliver your demands and >180K petition signatures. Sign:… https://t.co/kLfWh9VDIn
Consumers_Int @Consumers_Int
How greater access to technology can help reinvent basic education in Africa https://t.co/F6ItvXwOSQ
Consumers_Int @Consumers_Int
RT @Consumers_Int: #energyaccess for #consumers through #ISO50007 - see the importance of this #standard on @Consumers_Int blog:… https://t.co/dOIauDmaM6
Consumers_Int @Consumers_Int
RT @Consumers_Int: Shopping online outside the EU | The growth of #ecommerce among EU consumers. https://t.co/qhPVZiw4Qn https://t.co/yJWUCd2Jin
Consumers_Int @Consumers_Int
US @FCC criticised for trying to help cable companies avoid state #ConsumerProtection rules https://t.co/WLN7UoHKnO
Consumers_Int @Consumers_Int
RT @Consumers_Int: Welcome research from @BEUC & @vzbv that complements the problems we found consumers experience shopping cross-bord… https://t.co/CZLSb7GiIg
Consumers_Int @Consumers_Int
RT @Consumers_Int: Consumers International President Bart Combée does a great job of summing up workshops on strategic development at… https://t.co/8aek1VXa2d
Consumers_Int @Consumers_Int
We bring together 200+ organisations in 100+ countries. Explore our interactive map to learn more about our members… https://t.co/EssHc3tClO
Consumers_Int @Consumers_Int
RT @Consumers_Int: “We live in an environment where the unhealthy choice is the easy choice. We have to reverse this tide to halt obes… https://t.co/WNwz3ooXZX
Consumers_Int @Consumers_Int