Home Headlines Maya indigenous people suffer employment and educational discrimination in Yucatán

Maya indigenous people suffer employment and educational discrimination in Yucatán

by Yucatan Times
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The indigenous population of Yucatán, with 537,516 self-registered people, is one of the largest in the country, occupying fifth place nationally, but they face serious problems of discrimination that violate their fundamental rights, according to the Report on Racism and Discrimination in the Mexican Justice System.

Despite representing almost a quarter of the state population, according to official data, this sector continues to suffer exclusion, socioeconomic disadvantages and unequal treatment, mainly for racial reasons. This situation of discrimination damages the dignity of thousands of Yucatecan indigenous individuals.

The federal entities with the highest number of indigenous language speakers are Oaxaca (31.2 percent), Chiapas (28.2), Yucatán (23.7) and Guerrero (15.5 percent). These states account for 50.5 percent of the indigenous language speakers in the country.

According to Inegi data, these states have a significant presence of indigenous and Afro-Mexican population, which is distributed as follows, taking into account the considerable number of indigenous language speakers they house.

Mexican states with the largest number of indigenous population: Oaxaca, 1,165,186; Chiapas 1,141,499; Veracruz 644,559; Puebla 601,680; Yucatán 537,516 Mexico City 122,411.

According to official data, 23.7 percent of the population of Yucatán speaks an indigenous language, mainly Maya. This places the state with the third highest percentage of indigenous language speakers in the country. A considerable proportion of local society has identifiable indigenous origins and characteristics.

The report indicates that, despite their significant number, the indigenous population of Yucatán suffers discrimination that manifests itself in various forms. From prejudices that deny work and educational opportunities, to accusations of exclusion and inferiority for racial reasons.

According to the Population and Housing Census (2020 Census) carried out by the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (Inegi), it is estimated that in our country there are 23.2 million people aged three years and older who self-identify as indigenous, which It is equivalent to 19.4 percent of the total population of that age range.

It is estimated that 7,364,645 people aged three years and older are speakers of an indigenous language; which represents 6.1 percent of the country’s total population in that age range.

According to surveys carried out nationwide, indigenous people frequently suffer unjustified arrests by police, as well as disrespectful treatment and attitudes of superiority by non-indigenous people. Although there are no exact figures for the state, it is likely that a similar reality occurs in Yucatán.


The indigenous population of Yucatán, with 537,516 self-registered people, is one of the largest in the country, occupying fifth place nationally, but they face serious problems of discrimination that violate their fundamental rights, according to the Report on Racism and Discrimination in the Mexican Justice System.


The states with the highest number of indigenous language speakers are Oaxaca (31.2 percent), Chiapas (28.2), Yucatán (23.7) and Guerrero (15.5 percent). These entities account for 50.5 percent of the indigenous language speakers in the country.

Entities with the largest number of indigenous population: Oaxaca, 1,165,186; Chiapas 1,141,499; Veracruz 644,559; Puebla 601,680; Yucatán 537,516 Mexico City 122,411.

According to official data, 23.7 percent of the population of Yucatán speaks an indigenous language, mainly Mayan. This places the entity with the third highest percentage of indigenous language speakers in the country. A considerable proportion of local society has identifiable indigenous origins and characteristics.

The report indicates that, despite their significant number, the indigenous population of Yucatán suffers discrimination that manifests itself in various forms. From prejudices that deny work and educational opportunities, to accusations of exclusion and inferiority for racial reasons.

According to the Population and Housing Census (2020 Census) carried out by the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (Inegi), it is estimated that in our country there are 23.2 million people aged three years and older who self-identify as indigenous, which It is equivalent to 19.4 percent of the total population of that age range.

It is estimated that 7,364,645 people aged three years and older are speakers of an indigenous language; which represents 6.1 percent of the country’s total population in that age range.

Quintana Roo, Mexico

According to surveys carried out nationwide, indigenous people report frequently suffering unjustified arrests by police, as well as disrespectful treatment and attitudes of superiority by non-indigenous people. Although there are no exact figures for the state, it is likely that a similar reality occurs in Yucatán.

Prejudice and discrimination also keep the indigenous population at lower socioeconomic levels. The fewer indigenous traits someone exhibits in Yucatán – such as speaking Mayan or having indigenous surnames – the greater their chances of belonging to higher income strata and educational levels.

Indigenous culture and languages, far from being valued, become a reason for shame and exclusion. In many sectors, showing indigenous elements is equivalent to being relegated and is never a reason for pride. This reality, although not frequently reported, is present in Yucatán and damages the self-esteem of its native population.

TYT Newsroom

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