Fake 'Real Change' newspaper vendors causing problems

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by TERESA YUAN / KING 5 News

Bio | Email | Follow: @TeresaYuan

KING5.com

Posted on June 3, 2013 at 7:20 AM

Updated Monday, Jun 3 at 9:33 AM

SEATTLE -- Drivers and shoppers in Seattle are used to seeing people selling the newspaper "Real Change" around the city. The papers are sold by, and support, the homeless. But there is growing concern over unauthorized people selling those papers.

"They're bad for the Real Change because they were they were more aggressive," said Willie Jones, an authorized Real Change vendor. “I know some of those people. I tell them they can’t get any papers from me.”

Businesses and neighborhoods have complained to Real Change about aggressive vendors or people drinking or using drugs.

Real Change says that goes against their code of conduct.

“It's an issue for the customers or for people in that community, but it’s also an issue for our vendors. These individuals have bullied our vendors and, honestly, our most vulnerable vendors." said Tara Moss, Real Change's Program and Human Resources.

Real Change encourages the public to only buy papers from a vendor wearing a badge that's orange and says the year 2013. They say to make sure the picture matches the vendor.

The group is holding a community Monday to address the problems. It’s at 6:30 p.m. In West Seattle at High Point Library, 3411 Southwest Raymond Street.

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