HomeNewsBriefHonduras Ends Strike with Promise to Confront Public Transport Gang Violence
BRIEF

Honduras Ends Strike with Promise to Confront Public Transport Gang Violence

EXTORTION / 24 OCT 2014 BY DAVID GAGNE EN

Public transport workers in Honduras called off a strike after the government agreed to new security measures to stem violence and extortion affecting bus drivers. However, other experiences around the region suggest that this move may not be enough.

The strike took place over the course of eight hours on October 22 in capital city Tegucigalpa and was resolved after the government agreed to boost police patrols and install security cameras in buses and bus stops, reported La Prensa. The government also agreed to introduce military patrols in markets, as well as bus terminals and stops. 

The strikers called for the government to take action to halt a wave of violence that has seen 58 bus drivers killed so far in 2014, according to La Prensa. The most recent murder came just two days before the strike.

The head of the Honduran government’s transportation division claimed that the protesters were seeking to recuperate missed subsidy payments, a claim denied by the president of the Honduras National Transportation Council.

InSight Crime Analysis

Extortion of public transportation is rife in Honduras and other countries around the Northern Triangle region. Street gangs charge bus companies for the right to move through their territory; drivers are killed and buses torched if the payments aren’t made. Such incidents have become so common in places like Guatemala that being a bus driver there has been dubbed the “most dangerous job in the world.”

While these new measures could provide some additional security for bus drivers, it remains to be seen whether it will actually lead to decreased violence against public transport workers. Putting more security cameras at bus stops could yet prove to be just a band-aid solution, one that doesn’t fully address the power of the gangs that are able to harass and kill bus drivers with impunity.  

SEE ALSO: Honduras News and Profile

Other countries have struggled to resolve the issue of violence against public transport workers. In neighboring El Salvador, the government once deployed anti-terrorist units to patrol bus routes, and also made it obligatory to use electric cards to pay for bus fare — a system Honduras is also exploring. However, these measures haven’t made much of a dent in El Salvador: extortion fees of bus companies reportedly doubled between 2013 and 2014.

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Related Content

EXTORTION / 16 FEB 2017

The temporary closing of a private school in Honduras may have been due to the imposition of what administrators…

EXTORTION / 25 NOV 2019

In the northern Venezuela state home to the city of Maracaibo, gangs are taking an extremely violent measure against business…

ELITES AND CRIME / 22 AUG 2019

After a high-profile investigation, anti-corruption prosecutors in Honduras have secured a conviction against a former first lady, marking the first…

Institutional Content

THE ORGANIZATION

Strategic Communications Manager Job Description

12 FEB 2021

InSight Crime is looking for a full-time strategic communications manager. This person needs to be able to work in a fast-paced world of daily news, high-profile investigations, national and international…

THE ORGANIZATION

We Have Updated Our Website

4 FEB 2021

Welcome to our new home page. We have revamped the site to create a better display and reader experience.

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Events – Border Crime: The Northern Triangle and Tri-Border Area

ARGENTINA / 25 JAN 2021

Through several rounds of extensive field investigations, our researchers have analyzed and mapped out the main illicit economies and criminal groups present in 39 border departments spread across the six countries of study – the Northern Triangle trio of Guatemala, Honduras, and El…

BRIEF

InSight Crime’s ‘Memo Fantasma’ Investigation Wins Simón Bolívar National Journalism Prize

COLOMBIA / 20 NOV 2020

The staff at InSight Crime was awarded the prestigious Simón Bolívar national journalism prize in Colombia for its two-year investigation into the drug trafficker known as “Memo Fantasma,” which was…

ANALYSIS

InSight Crime – From Uncovering Organized Crime to Finding What Works

COLOMBIA / 12 NOV 2020

This project began 10 years ago as an effort to address a problem: the lack of daily coverage, investigative stories and analysis of organized crime in the Americas. …