25 years of WDR

World day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims is taking place on Sunday 15th November.

This year we are commemorating 25 years of global observance and 15 years since the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims was adopted by the UN

Brigitte Chaudhry MBE, RoadPeace founder and president, tells us how this important day started:

This day of Remembrance started in 1995, when I proposed to my colleagues at FEVR (European Federation of Road Traffic Victims) that we should introduce a Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims, similar to the Remembrance Day for war casualties in the UK. As I saw it we were dealing with a war on the roads, with victims also the young and often male. By holding this Day on the following Sunday, we would make this point clearly. The idea was received enthusiastically, the 3rd Sunday in November only agreed after some debate, and we began to observe this Day internationally, calling it at first European Day of Remembrance.

In 2004 I became the president of FEVR and this coincided with the WHO being elected by the UN as ‘the Coordinator for tackling the global road safety crisis’ . WHO set up a UN Road Safety Collaboration Forum (UNRSC), at which I represented FEVR since FEVR has UN consultative status. At the first UNRSC session, the creation of a global road safety day, which was called for at the 2004 UN assembly in New York, was discussed.

I informed the meeting that FEVR had been observing a global day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims for nearly a decade. A resolution was drafted accordingly and on 26th October 2005, our World Day was adopted by the UN, unanimously, as “the appropriate acknowledgement for victims of road traffic crashes and their families.

The UN and WHO began to promote the World Day and a World Day of Remembrance website in 2008.

In November 2015, FEVR received the Prince Michael Award for creating the World Day.

Now millions of people throughout the world come together on the third Sunday of November to observe the World Day together with WDR observed in all countries of the globe.

#WDoR2020

Brigitte Chaudhry (right) receiving the Prince Michael Award on behalf of FEVR for WDR in Brasilia at the 2nd Global Road Safety Conference.

FIND OUT MORE

– Get involved in WDR this year (coming soon)

– This Guide for Organizers by the World Health Organisation (WHO), FEVR & RoadPeace covers the early years of the World Day.

– Visit the World Day of Remembrance website for more information and resources, and to register your activity