Drugs cover Mexican money.

08 Oct How Cartels Affect Life in Mexico Part 2


This article is a continuation in a series about the effects that cartels have to the lives of the Mexican people, and how the violence of these criminal institutions creates an unstable environment throughout the entire country. This series looks at the lasting effects that the drug trade has made possible by fueling the rise of organizations that are responsible for billions of dollars in drugs being funneled into the United States, as well as the deaths and disappearances of thousands of people in North America.

Small businesses have higher risks

The ability to start businesses and create commerce is what gives a country the economic backing that it needs to survive and raise the standard of living of its citizens. This process has become complicated in many regions of Mexico over the last decade. In cities like Juarez, every single small business needs to pay protection and extortion money to the cartels, which creates a higher risk of starting up a company. This has driven many jobs from regions that need economic assistance the most. Although larger corporations can still function in these violent areas, they are not immune to the negative effects, and may find their supply lines raided to pay off cartels.

Tourism decreases

Although this intense violence and cartel influence is mostly concentrated in certain regions of the country, it creates a negative image of the entire nation. This type of branding negatively impacts the money coming into your country through tourism, which is a sector that Mexico has often thrived in. The best example of this decline is in 2014, when the country experienced a 20% decrease in tourism from the year before.

Sex slavery is rampant

There are many atrocities committed by the cartels down in Mexico, but one of the most egregious examples of their amoral foundation is in the prevalence that they have created in the sex industry in Mexico. Thousands of women vanish every year into the vast network of the sex slave trade in Mexico, and are forced to bear witness to unimaginable acts of brutality. One woman who was a sex slave for seven years before she escaped told the Mexican NGO Unidos contra la Trata that she was shuttled to brothels in many different cities and forced to sexually cater to clients of the cartel, many of whom were affluent, American businessmen.

This series will continue in Part 3.

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