BRIGHTON, Mich. – An auto dealership in Brighton put out a sign discouraging people from giving money to a panhandler after management said it offered him a job and he turned it down.
A sign under the hood of a car at the dealership was created as a public service announcement. It reads, "Please do not give anything to this panhandler. We offered him a full-time job at $10 per hour. He said, 'I make more than any of you,' and he did not want the job. Please donate to a more worthy cause."
Workers at the Honda dealership declined to comment on camera, but there were plenty of comments on social media. The sign and its message went viral.
"It's a scam," Brighton resident Dan Golem said. "People like me, people like you, we're working trying to provide for our families, and they're just standing there."
Felicia Tubbs works at the Shell Gas Station across the street. She took pizza to the car dealership employees.
"I don't like them standing there," Tubbs said. "No one else does, either. I think it's great that the dealership put some effort into trying to get rid of them."
For a year and a half, she said a duo of panhandlers would stand at the road with signs saying, "Homeless, please help." They were asking for money. Drivers knew them and described them as a father and son.
"At first, you feel bad for them," a driver said. "But then it's day after day, week after week."
Police got involved Tuesday and the duo was arrested. Tubbs said she saw the same men back at it shortly afterward. She said she snapped the picture of the men with a new sign that reads, "You can't afford a one-bedroom apartment on $10 per hour." The other one reads, "The median income in Livingston County is $70,000."
Michigan State Police troopers said two people were arrested for vagrancy and disorderly conduct. Their names weren't released because they haven't been arraigned.
The sign at the dealership has been taken down.