The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley

Forced Criminal Activities along Mexico's Eastern Migration Routes and Central America Department of Public Affairs and Security Studies

Queretaro - San Luis Potosi


In our interviews, numerous migrant advocates expressed concerns with the safety of migrants in the state of Queretaro. Due to Queretaro’s central and privileged location, connecting all corners of the country, many businesses and companies have established facilities there. Once considered a relative safe and calm place, there has been a spike in violence against migrants in the state in recent years. There has also been an increased number of cartels’ safe houses in the state. According to local migrant activists, officials are aware of the locations of many safe houses, but prefer not to intervene.

In the city of Queretaro, the local migrant shelter operates in an abandoned train station. In the past, the company responsible of train operations in Mexico attempted to remove the shelter from the station, but both parties have since settled. In our interviews in Tequisquiapan, Queretaro, local migrant advocates told us that private security guards working in trains are a cause of concern. We were told about an incident in which private security agents, working as an auxiliary force for the state of Mexico, threatened and physically assaulted shelter staff and migrants. Security guards allegedly shot migrants who were trying to board a train.

San Luis Potosi

San Luis Potosi is a very important stop along the migrant route. There, migrants face a less hostile reception and are closer to reaching the United States. Moreover, effective state government and law enforcement operations have decreased the presence of criminal organizations in the state.

According to local migrant activists, Hondurans are the most assisted group of migrants in San Luis Potosi. Although the train is still one of the ways used by migrants to reach the city, increased difficulty to board trains pushed migrants to spend more time travelling on foot and in trucks. Those who can afford, take conventional means of transportation, such as buses. One expert we interviewed observed that migrants arriving in San Luis Potosi often have health complications caused by their poor traveling conditions.