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World Sexual Health Day

Annually observed on September 4 since 2010, World Sexual Health Day (WSHD) is an awareness day managed by the World Association for Sexual Health (WAS), a global advocacy organization committed to promoting best practices in sexual health.

Young and happy couple hugging.

World Sexual Day encourages people to talk about sex and sexuality.

©iStockphoto.com/Ocus Focus

Sexual Rights as Human Rights

One of the main aims of WSHD is to help people around the world recognize that sexual rights are basic human rights, and they are essential for peoples' well-being and for living a fulfilled life. The day fosters a positive perspective on sexuality, one that is respectful of everyone's sexual identity, irrespective of where they see themselves on the human sexuality spectrum. The spectrum is a continuous scale that goes beyond conventional gender binaries and suggests that sexuality is a fluid concept – one that can change over time and space.

Talking About It

Sexuality is an integral part of an individual's life and identity. Despite this, sexuality and sexual health are often considered taboo subjects. World Sexual Health Day attempts to change this by engaging youth, adults, educators, sexual health practitioners, nonprofit organizations, and government policy-makers in an open and earnest conversation about sex, sexuality, and sexual health.

The day also encourages parents, teachers, guardians, and pediatricians to provide children and youth under their care with age-appropriate and scientifically accurate sex education. Comprehensive sexuality education can help young people and, eventually, adults, to be more sex-positive – the notion that all sex is good as long as it involves consenting participants and does not compromise their health. In addition, sex education promotes safe sex, which is one of the bedrocks of sexual health. It also helps make consent an integral part of all sexual encounters.

What Happens on World Sexual Health Day?

World Sexual Health Day is not an official holiday so businesses, schools, and government offices are open. Sexual health groups and educators organize outreach drives, conferences, and workshops to bring attention to the importance of sexual health in maintaining a happy and fulfilling lifestyle.

World Sexual Health Day Observances

YearWeekdayDateNameHoliday Type
2015FriSep 4World Sexual Health DayWorldwide observance
2016SunSep 4World Sexual Health DayWorldwide observance
2017MonSep 4World Sexual Health DayWorldwide observance
2018TueSep 4World Sexual Health DayWorldwide observance
2019WedSep 4World Sexual Health DayWorldwide observance
2020FriSep 4World Sexual Health DayWorldwide observance
2021SatSep 4World Sexual Health DayWorldwide observance
2022SunSep 4World Sexual Health DayWorldwide observance
2023MonSep 4World Sexual Health DayWorldwide observance
2024WedSep 4World Sexual Health DayWorldwide observance
2025ThuSep 4World Sexual Health DayWorldwide observance

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