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On Monday, May 29, LDS Congresswoman Mia Love (R-Utah) and Timothy Ballard, founder of Operation Underground Railroad, a nonprofit organization that rescues victims of sex slavery throughout the world, met with the newly elected President Jovenel Moïse of the Republic of Haiti to discuss solutions to the human trafficking crisis.
U.S. Representative Love, who is the first Haitian-American to serve in Congress, also serves on the Terrorism and Illicit Financing Subcommittee and is focusing her efforts on fighting human trafficking. She recently connected with Ballard, whose organization has performed multiple rescue operations in Haiti.
Throughout the meeting at the National Palace in Port-au-Prince, Love spoke to President Moïse in Haitian Creole.
“At first, I just listened as he talked about what he was going to do for his country,” she said. “He talked about agriculture, and he talked about the conflicts he would like to have resolved. We then talked about Operation Underground Railroad, and I asked if he was aware that there are privately funded people here who help support the orphanages and safe homes in Haiti. He was aware and seemed incredibly receptive to working with us.”
Timothy Ballard was also pleased with the meeting and is optimistic about the growing relationship with the Haitian government.