Explosion In Haitian Population In Mt. Olive

The town of Mt. Olive says it has seen a dramatic increase in the number of Haitians living in its community since 2010.

Mt. Olive's town manager Charles Brown says towards the end of 2010, Haitians began arriving in town from Florida looking for work. He says most took jobs at the meat processing and packing plants in the area, although he says some newcomers have also opened their own businesses.

Brown says the Haitian population began increasing after the 2010 census was taken, which estimated Mt. Olive's population at 4, 600. Brown says since then, unofficial reports from the Haitian community indicate as many has 3,000 Haitians live in Mt. Olive.

Brown says the increased population has brought more business to existing stores in the area. He says it's beyond the town's scope to do an official population count and with the next census not until 2020, the town will most likely check with schools and employers to try to get a more accurate population estimate.

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