Trump’s Cuts to Central American Aid Will Only Worsen The Humanitarian Crisis He Created

In an attempt to push for his ineffective border wall, Trump continues to make reckless policy decisions that undermine U.S. security interests and aggravate the humanitarian crisis at our border. Trump’s latest decision to cut off aid to El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala does nothing to address the root causes of the immigration flow from these countries and will only exacerbate issues of gang- and drug-related violence in these countries.


Instead of taking action to reduce the root causes of immigration, Trump’s counterproductive decision to revoke aid from the Northern Triangle countries will only make the situation worse:


CNN: “According to the US Global Leadership Coalition, comprising retired diplomats, military leaders and members of Congress, aid programs in the three countries are working to address the ‘root causes of violence’  in order to ‘promote opportunity and security for their citizens.’”


WSJ: “Immigration analysts said the proposed cuts are likely to backfire and risk fostering the root causes of migration such as grinding poverty and widespread violence, as well as lawlessness that feeds government corruption and extortion by criminal organizations.”


Politico: “Adriana Beltrán, a director with the Washington Office on Latin America, a non-governmental organization that tracks the funding, argued that the cut will worsen conditions in the country — and potentially cause more people to trek to the U.S. ‘It’s a shooting-yourself-in-the-foot policy,’ she said of the cuts.”


Trump is oblivious to how Central American aid programs work. The truth is this money goes to U.S.-sponsored programs that combat drug and human trafficking, gang violence, and corruption.


Washington Post: “Jim Nealon, a former U.S. ambassador to Honduras, said that Trump doesn’t seem to understand the way the Central American aid program works. The U.S. government doesn’t give the money to foreign governments, but rather ‘to programs designed and implemented by the U.S., with the cooperation of governments and civil society,’ he said. Much of the aid is administered by nonprofit groups.”


Vox: “Confusion is par for the course when the Trump administration does things because Donald Trump wants to do them, not because the officials actually implementing the policy think it’s a particularly good idea. And that’s exactly what’s going on here.”