SEATTLE - Seattle police knew the release of the video would hurt the homeless community. Interim Seattle Police Chief Jim Pugel tried to lessen the blow by apologizing to some homeless advocates in advance.
Other people who work to help the homeless were disappointed by the video. Mike Johnson works for the Union Gospel Mission. His concern was the impact the video would have on the men he helps at the homeless shelter, “When they see that kind of stereotyping and making fun of them, it makes it harder to believe that if they took the efforts to get back on their feet they would be welcomed.” He would like to see Interim Police Chief Jim Pugel come to the Union Gospel Mission to have breakfast and apologize to some of the homeless men directly.
At “Nickelsville,” homeless camp residents heard about the video. Treasa Sides said, “At first I was a little bit horrified because I am homeless right now. However, looking around I look around at a lot of second chances and people make mistakes in their past. She’s willing to give Pugel a second chance.
Scott Morrow is an advocate for the homeless. He said he’s met Interim Chief Pugel before. While he didn’t think the video was funny, he does recognize Pugel’s previous actions and support of the homeless. “I judge him on how he’s worked with real people and he’s worked with myself and other homeless advocates I know of with decency and respect,” said Morrow.