February 8, 2012
The Walmart parking lot in Williston, North Dakota is no longer cutting the town's homeless oil workers a break, and has given them 24 hours to hit the road, according to the Lauren Donovan of the Bismarck Tribune.
In this parking lot, dozens of campers — sans electricity or sewer hookups — have been staying overnight for weeks, sometimes months at a time.
Homeless in America: One Family's Story
A huge influx of new workers into the booming oil state has led to a dearth of housing, and an assortment of "man camps" have emerged as an alternative. Despite paychecks topping $100,000 for some people, development in Williston is lagging too far behind the rush to accommodate so many new residents.
Walmart said that the cons had outweighed the pros in being good neighbors to the oil transients. The company claimed to be receiving reports of women scared to enter the lot, and of some customers avoiding the store altogether rather than braving the campers.
Anyone remaining in the lot by tomorrow will be towed by Williston police.
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