A mother walks past a red-tinged wall with a baby wrapped in a blanket on her back and a toddler walking beside her.

Improving the Guatemalan Justice System .

Gender Equality and Social Inclusion | LGBTQI+-Inclusive Development | Safeguarding | Human Rights | Empowering Youth
Latin America and the Caribbean

Youth and Gender Justice Project

Project Dates: May 2016 - February 2021
Guatemala must address weaknesses in its justice system to ensure that the country’s most vulnerable populations can access vital services.

Guatemala’s justice system is vital for the protection of its most vulnerable citizens, including youth, women, indigenous people, and LGBTQI populations. The Guatemalan justice system struggles to fulfill its obligations in the administration of justice, particularly in how it handles juvenile justice, gender-based violence, and human trafficking. USAID’s Youth and Gender Justice Project aims to improve the Guatemalan justice system’s services for victims of violence and reduce the repetition of criminal behavior (recidivism) among juvenile offenders. The project works to rebuild public confidence in the system and empower the country’s most vulnerable communities to transition from victims of violence to survivors. In turn, a key part of the project involves tailoring system approaches to the distinct needs of vulnerable populations.


youth in conflict with the law granted alternative sentencing


percent cut in the time taken to issue arrest warrants in cases involving child victims


resolved cases of gender-based violence in specialized courts

Project Goals

  • Create and implement a National Vulnerable Populations Protection System to improve coordination between service providers for victims and to provide specific services to different groups, such as indigenous women in the western highlands and urban youth struggling to escape gang-related violence
  • Strengthen justice system institutions through activities such as training justice sector personnel and improving hate-crime data collection