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In Central America, the root causes of migration run deep — and irregular migration from the region has a direct impact on the United States. For that reason, the U.S. must consistently engage with the region to address the hardships that cause people to leave Central America and come to our border. Learn more about how the U.S. is approaching irregular migration for the benefit of citizens in the U.S. and Central America.

Root Causes Strategy Overview

Our objective is to promote a democratic, prosperous, and safe Central America, where people advance economically, live, work, and learn in safety and dignity, contribute to and benefit from the democratic process, have confidence in public institutions, and enjoy opportunities to create futures for themselves and their families at home.

The Strategy is organized under five pillars:

  • Pillar I: Addressing economic insecurity and inequality;
  • Pillar II: Combating corruption, strengthening democratic governance, and advancing the rule of law
  • Pillar III: Promoting respect for human rights, labor rights, and a free press
  • Pillar IV: Countering and preventing violence, extortion, and other crimes perpetrated by criminal gangs, trafficking networks, and other organized criminal organizations
  • Pillar V: Combating sexual, gender-based, and domestic violence

You can learn more about the Root Causes Strategy through the resources listed below. Beyond addressing the root causes of migration, the U.S. is committed to managing migration humanely  throughout North and Central America.


The U.S. Government’s Complete Root Causes Strategy
Reports to Congress

Progress Made in the Strategy to Advance Economic Prosperity,Combat Corruption, Strengthen Democratic Governance, andImprove Civilian Security in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras — July 2022

A Strategy to Advance Economic Prosperity, Combat Corruption, Strengthen Democratic Governance, and Improve Civilian Security in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras and to Curb Irregular Migration from the Region

Section 353 Reports Targeting Foreign Persons in Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, and Nicaragua who Undermine Democracy or Engage in Significant Corruption

U.S. Department of State

The Lessons of 1989: Freedom and Our Future