“Notable Honors” Outgoing US Diplomat Lauded for Heroic Anti-Human Trafficking Efforts in Liberia”.

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The Anti-Human Trafficking Taskforce of Liberia, under the leadership of the Ministry of Labour, has honored Mr. Joel F. Maybury, the outgoing Deputy Chief of Mission at the United States Embassy near Monrovia, for his significant contributions to combating human trafficking in Liberia. The honor was bestowed upon Mr. Maybury on Friday, August 4, 2023, in Monrovia. Liberia’s Labour Minister, Cllr. Charles H Gibson, highlighted the extensive efforts and contributions made by the U.S. government, facilitated by Mr. Maybury, in the fight against human trafficking in Liberia.

Minister Gibson stated that during Mr. Maybury’s tenure in Liberia, the United States Department conducted an evaluation to identify global heroes in the fight against human trafficking, and Liberia emerged as the only African country to produce such a hero. Mr. Maybury’s expertise in human trafficking was instrumental during his time in Liberia, resulting in the repatriation of 112 Liberians, primarily females, from Dubai, Oman, and other parts of the world. These efforts were accomplished in collaboration with various partners and organizations.

Minister Gibson further elaborated that, in partnership with support from the U.S. government through the International Organization for Migration (IOM), trafficking victims underwent comprehensive social training and entrepreneurial programs. Each trainee received both financial and material support amounting to $1500 United States Dollars, enabling them to establish new lives and contribute positively to society.

The Minister proudly emphasized that these achievements were bolstered by the unwavering political determination of Liberia’s government, with President Dr. George M Weah displaying consistent concern for the well-being of trafficking victims. Minister Gibson disclosed that a fund has been established in Dubai for repatriation purposes. Additionally, the Ministry of Health has formed a dedicated team to provide immediate assistance to trafficking victims upon their return to Liberia. Currently, three secure homes have been established to accommodate and support victims upon their arrival, and plans are underway to establish additional safe homes in Nimba, Grand Gedeh, and Lofa counties.

During the honoring ceremony, Mr. Joel F. Maybury, the outgoing Deputy Chief of Mission at the United States Embassy near Monrovia, commended Minister Gibson and the Liberian government for their commendable efforts in addressing human trafficking. He reaffirmed the commitment of the United States government to continue supporting Liberia in its battle against this heinous crime.

In conclusion, the Anti-Human Trafficking Taskforce of Liberia, led by the Ministry of Labour, recognized Mr. Joel F. Maybury for his remarkable dedication and achievements in the fight against human trafficking. Minister Gibson highlighted the collaborative efforts between Liberia and the U.S. government, resulting in the successful repatriation and empowerment of trafficking victims. The ongoing commitment to addressing this issue was underscored by both Minister Gibson and Mr. Maybury, affirming the strong partnership between Liberia and the United States in combating human trafficking.

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