A northern Minnesota shelter has reported an increase in sexual violence complaints in the community near the construction site for Enbridge’s Line 3 pipeline, according to documents obtained by the Minnesota Reformer through a public records request. The controversial proposed pipeline expansion would carry tar sands from Alberta, Canada, into Wisconsin. The Violence Intervention Project in Thief River Falls requested reimbursement from a public safety fund – set up by Enbridge to prevent human trafficking and violence as a condition of its construction permit – in order to pay for hotel rooms for two women who were allegedly assaulted by pipeline workers. The nonprofit reported an increase in calls for service from women complaining of being harassed or assaulted by pipeline workers. Although Enbridge denied the project would lead to an increase in violence, last month, two men working on Enbridge’s Line 3 pipeline were arrested in a sting and charged with solicitation, one of a minor. So-called “man camps” that spring up around pipeline construction and near other extraction sites have been connected to increased sexual violence, especially against Indigenous women and girls, who often receive fewer social services and whose cases frequently go ignored by law enforcement. (Minnesota Reformer)