Hundreds of oil spill relief workers receive first pay checks - - The News for South Mississippi

Hundreds of oil spill relief workers receive first pay checks


By Jessica Bowman – email

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Hundreds of workers received their first paychecks for helping clean up the oil spill. Jessica Bowman stopped by the parking lot on East Pass Road where the Command Center is set up to issue checks.

People from Mississippi, Alabama, Texas and even as far as Missouri waited in a long line for hours to receive their first pay check from the Command Center, a company that hired individuals to aid in the oil spill clean up. Some of the people are frustrated after working for days without pay.

"I'm definitely eager to get paid for today," one worker said.

The shopping center is usually quiet, but on Thursday it was chaotic. Command Center officials set up portable tables to issue pay checks to oil spill workers. Cardboard boxes filled with pay checks were placed on metal chairs while hundreds of workers of all ages anxiously gathered around, hoping their names would be called next.

"It takes like $30 a day just to get back and forth and we've been working with no pay check," another employee said.

Lee Ward is from Alabama, and said he's been working for the past eleven days.

"Dropped rocks on the ground, spreaded rocks on the ground," Ward said.

Ward said he doesn't mind the long lines. He wants to do whatever work is necessary to help out his neighboring state.

"It feels great. We're all here to work. We're all here to make money. We're all here to help our community."

Most of the workers who received paychecks said they are helping the community by cleaning South Mississippi's shorelines.

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