Hijacked to Biloxi

If this is legitimate, somebody should burn:


My name is Kalila Dalton. Three of my friends and I, as well as at least 130 other people, were recently the victims of a scam related to Hurricane Katrina.

In brief, my friends and I wanted to help the survivors of the disaster, and saw an ad for a company, OneSource, that was hiring folks to go down and help people in New Orleans. On September 2nd, we signed on, but were bused instead (along with about 130 other people) to Biloxi, Mississippi to work on a casino that had been damaged by the hurricane. We had also been promised a food stipend and hotel accommodations that did not materialize; instead, we were given bologna sandwiches and slept on the bus. We would have been more than willing to work in those conditions if we had been helping people, as we had been promised, but none of us wanted to fix up a casino in miserable working conditions while the townspeople of Biloxi suffered around us.

We decided that we wanted to leave, since we’d been deceived and were not actually helping people in need, rather fixing up an unnecessary recreational business. On the trip there, the manager had said that anyone who acted inappropriately would be sent home on Greyhound, so we thought it would be no problem to leave the work site. When we and others approached him, however, he claimed that there was no way to get us out of the area, and that we’d be forced to stay at the work site for six weeks.

Additionally, the area was under martial law, so we were not permitted to leave the area of a parking lot between 6pm and 6am. If we did, we would run the risk of being shot. That may be understandable, but it contributed heavily to the prison-camp atmosphere of the work site. Not only were they not providing us with transportation home, as they’d promised; we were not even allowed to walk away.

It took labor organizing and lots of pressure from us and other workers to get the manager to find a way for us to go home. Finally, after a long speech that tried to defer blame for the situation from him and his company, the manager arranged to send one of the buses home, with about twenty-two of us. We arrived home on September 5th, exhausted, disillusioned, and angry. We are considering suing.

Rightly so.

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