Citizen insecurity thwarts Latin America's development: UNDP

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Insecurity is a shared challenge that obstructs social and economic development in every country in Latin America, says a new UN Development Programme (UNDP) report launched in New York on Tuesday. But the Regional Human Development Report (HDR) 2013-2014 says crime control measures alone are insufficient; noting that the most effective way to reduce citizen insecurity is by improving people's lives, boosting inclusive economic growth and enhancing security and justice institutions.

UN Assistant-Secretary General and UNDP Director for Latin America and the Caribbean Heraldo Muñoz says the rate of growth has been above five percent in recent years leading to diminished poverty and even have reduced inequality, which he adds, is still a major issue.

“While that has been happening however, citizen insecurity has increased, homicides in Latin America have increased in the last decade while in other regions homicides have stabilized or even reduced. At the same time, robberies have tripled in the last 25 years. So that is a paradoxical situation and I think it is due to a series of factors. There is no one single reason. One of the reasons is because the quality of economic growth in Latin America in recent years has been low-quality growth focused mainly on consumption with not enough social mobility and that has led to what we say is an aspiration crime. “

The Human Development Report focuses on six main threats that negatively impact the region: street crime, violence and crime committed by and against the youth; gender-based violence; corruption; violence committed by state actors and organized crime.

Donn Bobb, United Nations.

Duration: 1’40″

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