Central America

The brutal civil war conflicts of the 1980s are over but violence is rising from other sources in Central America.  Democratic institutions remain 
fragile and governments have been unable (and sometimes unwilling) to
 spur equitable development, curtail corruption, or combat 
increasing criminal activity.

WOLA works with colleagues in Central America and the international community to prevent violence, support police reform and combat organized crime.  We monitor the impact of assistance and trade agreements on labor rights and 
sustainable economic development.  We support on-going efforts to establish the conditions for free and fair elections and to bring justice for human rights violations.

Key Program Themes:

Tackling Insecurity, Corruption and Impunity

We work with regional partners for comprehensive reform that addresses the root causes of violence and ensure effective, accountable police and judicial systems that protect both the rights and the security of citizens.

Monitoring U.S. and International Aid to Central America

As it makes its way through Congress, WOLA is closely following a historic aid request to the countries of Central America, a proposal which—if invested wisely—could address the underlying factors that have fueled record migration from the region in recent years.

Addressing the Root Causes of Migration

Targeted efforts to generate employment opportunities among youth in the region can pay off in a big way, and can help reduce the crime and violence that compel minors to make the dangerous decision to migrate to the United States.

Protecting Human Rights in Central America

Human rights violations in the region, especially by the police and armed forces, have risen dramatically in recent years. See our work to promote human rights in Central America.


Central America News & Analysis

Increases in Child and Family Migration from Central America

A Situation Demanding Creative Solutions, Not a Crisis Demanding Another Crackdown
Analysis & Commentary
Two years after the spike in Central American unaccompanied children and families apprehended at the U.S.-Mexico border, persistent migration flows underscore the urgent need for creative approaches to this "new normal."

Guatemala Must Guarantee Safety of Judge Miguel Ángel Gálvez and Defend Judicial Independence and the Rule of Law

WOLA expresses its deep concern over the threats and intimidation made against Guatemalan judge Miguel Ángel Gálvez, who is currently hearing the landmark "La Linea" corruption case.

Arrests in Berta Cáceres Case: A Positive Step, but Justice and Truth Must Be Guaranteed

WOLA calls on the government of Honduras to accept the participation of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in the case of Berta Cáceres.