7 junio, 2024

The 22 Most Serious Social Problems in Mexico

The social problems of Mexico They are those situations that collectively afflict Mexican citizens residing in the territory and that have various causes as their origin. Corruption, poverty, crime and food stand out.

From poverty, all kinds of problems arise in Mexico. In fact, according to different indicators, in 2020 the greatest concern of Mexicans was poverty and unemployment.

Another of the common factors that social problems have is that they are difficult to overcome. For example, people living in extreme poverty have a harder time generating wealth, obtaining good jobs, or starting businesses.

Mexico is a country that belongs to Latin America, and therefore, its social problems are, for the most part, the same that affect the region. Latin America is a territory where all the problems that arise are usually the consequence of poverty, which, although it varies between different countries, tends to have the same structure and patterns.

They generally have historical motivations that over the years have shaped their inhabitants and have become problems that temporarily affect Mexican society.

Overcoming these problems does not depend solely on social policies; generally requires a change in the social and cultural worldview of the country.

The most important social problems in Mexico


Poverty is the main social problem that afflicts Mexico, like all Latin American countries. Most of the social problems suffered by Mexican society derive from it.

Poverty is measured by parameters such as income, malnutrition, lack of access to public services, housing, education, access to health, among others.

The Mexican government subdivides the phenomenon of poverty into five categories: moderate poverty, Coneval level (National Council for the Evaluation of Social Development Policy), relative, absolute and extreme.

Almost half of the population of Mexico lives below the poverty line. This represents a total of approximately 53 million 300 thousand inhabitants of the territory.

According to the standards issued by the World Bank, which are restricted mainly to analyzing the economic income of the population, more than 50% of the Mexican population is below the international poverty line and is from the lower class.


Despite the fact that the macro problem is poverty, in Mexico crime is the other great concern of its population.

Although this is a widespread and systematized problem throughout the Latin American region, in Mexico urban and rural violence has been consolidated, with special emphasis on organized crime.

The rankings indicate that Ciudad Juárez, the most populous city in the northern state of Chihuahua, is the second most violent city in the world.

Among the first ten positions in the ranking are also Acapulco, Torreón, Chihuahua and Durango. Crimes range from urban assaults to homicides and kidnappings.


According to different corruption indicators, Mexico is the most corrupt country among the members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

Corruption in Mexico transcends the strictly governmental sphere and it is common to find it in the different police forces of the states.

On the other hand, corruption in the allocation of contracts is so frequent that it reaches business spheres. The illegal use of public money in Mexico is widespread in most areas of the economy.

access to food

Access to food in Mexico is far from being universal. In addition to that, this factor is intrinsically related to the economic poverty suffered by citizens. Regarding child malnutrition, it predominantly affects the south of the country, also doubling if they live in rural areas.

In this same vein, the risk of a Mexican indigenous child dying from curable diseases such as diarrhea is three times greater than the risk of a non-indigenous child.

access to health

One of the biggest problems that afflict the different Latin American societies is access to health.

In Mexico, the health area depends on different entities such as the hospitals of the Ministry of Health, the Mexican Institute of Social Security, the Institute of Security and Social Services for State Workers, or even companies such as Petróleos Mexicanos.

However, universal coverage is far from being achieved. There are still more than 4 million Mexicans who do not have access to public health.

access to education

Education is a great pending task for the states of Latin America. In the Mexican Republic, the right to education is enshrined in article 3 of the Political Constitution. Education at the initial, primary and secondary level is compulsory and free and can be provided by State institutions.

Mexico is the OECD country that invests the most in education, however, most of the budget earmarked for this matter is used to pay the teaching staff and not to develop plans to universalize access to education.

In addition to this, in Mexico only half of the schools have the necessary infrastructure, equipped with all basic services.

There are still regions where there are infants who do not attend school because they are engaged in agricultural work or because of physical handicaps.


Since Mexico is such a populated country, air pollution is the order of the day. Especially with regard to Mexico City, its capital, this problem has claimed the lives of 9,600 deaths each year.

Mexico fails to comply with the regulations imposed by organizations such as the World Health Organization on this matter.

Pollution in Mexico City is directly related to its population, since its metropolitan area has more than twenty million inhabitants. On the other hand, light pollution is another major social problem that affects the Mexican population.

Mexico City, Ecatepec, Guadalajara or Puebla are cities whose levels of light pollution are similar to those of metropolises such as Hong Kong in China.

living place

The United Nations Organization has established access to decent housing as a universal human right.

75% of Mexican land is destined for housing, which on many occasions due to its high cost is not accessible, especially for people living below the poverty line.

The majority of the population does not have access to the purchase of housing. The State generally does not build homes, so the population requests subsidies and aid from different public institutions.

Inclusion of minorities

Like all countries in the world, Mexico is a country with minorities that have historically been discriminated against. Despite the large population in the country, the group most affected by inequality are the indigenous people.

The most frequent causes of discrimination in Mexico are due to disability, health condition, physical appearance and finally sexual orientation.


Currently, 10% of Mexican citizens are unemployed or work less than 15 hours per week. In addition, another 15% work less than 35 hours a week, having monthly income below the minimum wage.

It should be noted that if a person works for at least one hour a week in an informal trade, they are not unemployed.

Another worrisome issue related to the unemployment problem in Mexico is the underemployment of the labor force. There are many Mexican citizens who have the possibility and availability to work more hours, but do not find the opportunities to do so.

informal work

The problem of informal work in Mexico is directly related to unemployment. In the country, almost 30% of people live by performing informal jobs.

These jobs depend on the use of domestic resources, and are characterized by operating without records of any kind, or paying taxes.

Informal work in Mexico is difficult to classify, since it is not registered in the census and it is difficult to separate it from activities that take place on a daily basis within the domestic sphere.

The operation of this type of business is usually on a small scale, another reason why it is difficult to detect. Another problem that derives from labor informality in Mexico is the lack of connection to the social security system of workers in the country.

Approximately 57% of the inhabitants of Mexico are not linked to any type of labor protection protected by the state. This happens because many jobs that are considered formal do not actually issue any type of contract between the employer and the employee.

Machismo and violence against women

As in several Latin American countries, machismo in Mexico still affects all spheres of society. Women are constantly attacked physically, psychologically and verbally.

A high percentage of women in Mexico have been the victim of some act of violence, at least once in their lives.

The most common types of violence include emotional, physical, economic, sexual, discriminatory, or intrafamily.

An important element that must be taken into account within this social problem is that the main aggressors of women in Mexico are their partners.

Among the most common acts of violence in this area are rape, physical abuse and harassment.

child exploitation

Historically, the problem of child exploitation has affected the American continent in a general way. Mexico is no exception and it is estimated that 4 million children under the age of 17 are working.

In addition, of those 4 million, one million of those children are under the age of 14 years. This means that you are working illegally in accordance with the provisions of the Federal Labor Law.

Although it is difficult to calculate exactly, it is believed that 2/3 of the children who work are boys, while 1/3 are girls.

The working child population in Mexico is located mainly in rural areas, with women in charge of carrying out domestic chores, and men dedicated to working in field tasks.

pathological gambling

Gambling is a problem that has affected public health since 1992. It affects anyone regardless of their socioeconomic status, gender or age. However, the most appropriate profile is that of a middle-aged woman, with a low income and who frequents casinos or betting houses.

The problem is that gambling indices are increasing, with young people being the most proliferating cases throughout the country.

Gambling causes addiction problems, financial instability at home, and possible job loss.

High rates of…

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