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Thursday, November 10, 2011

Full Employment and Crime

     Since oil companies have been pumping crude out of the ground in northwestern North Dakota, crime rates have soared in the boomtowns of Williston and Watford. Hundreds of young male oil workers with money in their pockets and no families to go home to after work, has significantly driven up the rates of assault, rape, and a variety of alcohol related crimes. The loose money flowing through these towns has created criminal opportunities for armed robbers, burglars, prostitutes, drug dealers and swindlers. The understaffed police departments have been overwhelmed by the surge in the crimes against property and persons.

     When unemployment rates go down, crime rates do not necessarily go down with them. What causes crime is a complicated matter involving a combination of factors and variables. In this part of North Dakota, high employment has brought high crime.

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