U.S. News


Why Honduran Migrants — Especially Women — Are Heading North

Thousands of Honduran migrants are traveling toward Mexico and the U.S. fleeing some of the worst violence and poverty in the Americas.
Posted at 6:30 PM, Oct 18, 2018

This is the scene playing out in Central America: thousands of Honduran migrants making their way north fleeing poverty and violence in their home country. 

But what is the extent of that violence? 

Honduras is a part of the Northern Triangle which also includes Guatemala and El Salvador. These countries have some of the highest homicide rates in North and South America. Honduras saw more than 40 homicides per 100,000 people in 2017. For comparison, the U.S. saw just over 5 murders per 100,000 people in the same year. 

Violence against women is especially noteworthy. According to the Washington Office on Latin America, 471 women were killed in Honduras in 2015. That's one every 16 hours. And other organizations have put that number even higher

That violence has been spurred by gang activity, drug trafficking and povertyAccording to numbers from 2013, more than half the country was below the poverty line with more than 40 percent in extreme poverty. The World Bank defines extreme poverty as living on less than $2 a day

Central American authorities and the U.S. have been scrambling to figure out how to deal with the influx of Honduran migrants moving toward the border.

NBC reports the Mexican government has sent hundreds of "extra federal police" to the Mexico-Guatemala border to try and intercept the migrants. 

Meanwhile, President Trump has threatened to close the southern border if Mexico doesn't work to stem the flow of migrants heading toward the U.S.