Mat Gendle, professor of psychology, and Carmen Monico, assistant professor of human service studies, address the role of U.S. drug policy on the displacement of unaccompanied minors from Central America
Journal of Trafficking, Organized Crime and Security recently published an article by Elon's Mat Gendle and Carmen Monico that examines the increase in unaccompanied minors who in recent years have been entering Mexico and the U.S. from Central America and the role that U.S. drug policy has played in their displacement.
The article, "The balloon effect: The role of U.S. drug policy in the displacement of unaccompanied minors from the Central American Northern triangle," focuses on what many regard as one of the most significant migrant crises in recent memory.
Gendle, a professor of psychology and director of Project Pericles, and Monico, an assistant professor of human service studies, explore how drug-related violence and crime in this region of Central America that includes Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador, is contributing to the displacement of these young residents. Gendle and Monico note in the article that between October 2008 and January 2016, nearly 140,000 unaccompanied minors from this region were apprehended by U.S. Customs and Border Patrol agents along the southern border of the U.S.
"It is clear that the increasing violence in the CANT (Central American Northern Triangle) is, in part, a consequence of failed U.S. drug policies in Mexico and South America that have displaced drug-related criminal activity to CANT states," the authors write in the article's abstract. "This paper provides an overview of the U.S. drug policies that have played a significant role in the continued inflow of unaccompanied minors, which prolongs the humanitarian crisis, and links them to past failed anti-drug efforts attempted by the U.S. in other parts of Latin America."
More information about the journal is available here.