What is Behind the Sudden Surge of Child Migrants? The Case of the Northern Triangle and Mexico
37 Pages Posted: 1 Aug 2018
Date Written: July 12, 2018
Since 2009 there has been a significant increase in the number of unaccompanied child migrants, family units and adults from Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala arriving at U.S. borders. This paper uses Customs and Border Protection data and data from the countries of origin of these children to identify the causes behind the sudden surge in the number of children arriving at U.S. borders. The results suggest that violence in the countries of origin is a key driver of child migration. The results are also consistent with a learning model, in which families, after being exposed to several policy interventions that aim to deter child migration, decrease their likelihood of sending a child. This is the case even when violence towards children has increased.
Keywords: Child Migration, Unaccompanied Child Migration, Family Units Migration, Northern Triangle, Violence
JEL Classification: O15, J61, F22
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation