IDB: Studies Reveal Crime’s Toll on Latin American and the Caribbean Economies

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Crime and violence have had a dramatic impact on women, youth and the economic well-being of families in Latin America and the Caribbean, according to several studies commissioned by the IDB

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“Crime has tangible direct costs such as the cost of funding a private and public security infrastructure to prevent and combat crime,” said Ana Corbacho, sector economic advisor of the IDB’s IFD Sector, which covers citizen security.

Crime and violence have had a dramatic impact on women, youth and the economic well-being of families in Latin America and the Caribbean, according to several studies commissioned by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).

The new studies underscore the more hidden dimensions of the cost of crime on Latin America’s economies, by looking at issues such as women’s health and property values.

The studies were the result of a call for proposals to academics and other experts to use innovative and appropriate methodologies to measure the cost of crime and violence in the region. Out of a total of 117 proposals received, eight are being presented by their authors at a Jan. 24–25 seminar at the IDB headquarters in Washington.

The children of women who have suffered from domestic violence have a greater risk of being born underweight, and grow up with more feeble health, with less chance they will be vaccinated and more likely to suffer from diarrhea, according to one study on seven countries in the region.

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