In Guatemala, youth have the worst social indicators due to the lack of public policies aimed at providing opportunities for development and ending discrimination. Because of the stigma, a context of inequality and exclusion, lack of public health and public education, youth are a vulnerable population with limited access to fundamental rights.
Guatemala continues to face systemic poverty, inequality, discrimination, exclusion and a high level of impunity. In 2018, the country was ranked 127 in the Human Development Index, the second lowest in its region, falling two points due to the lack of gender equality, and social and economic inequality.
Congress did not make progress in the adoption of laws in critical human rights areas, instead promoting a regressive agenda that could further entrench impunity, restrict civic space, and undermine the rights of indigenous peoples, women, and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons. These trends risk reversing the progress made in the implementation of the 1996 peace agreements that brought the internal armed conflict to an end.
In 2018, OHCHR observed the shrinking of civic space, particularly for human rights defenders.