Tim Hortons apologizes after water poured on sleeping homeless men

Tim Hortons has issued an apology after one of its store owners poured water under two sleeping homeless men Friday morning.

Facebook campaign calls for boycott of Robson Street store in downtown Vancouver

Tim Hortons has apologized and promised the owner will personally make amends after someone from the Robson St store deliberately poured water on a homeless person. (CBC)

Tim Hortons has issued an apology after someone from its downtown Vancouver store poured water under two sleeping homeless men Friday morning.

The company launched an internal investigation after the incident resulted in a Twitter and Facebook campaign calling for a boycott of the Robson Street location that garnered thousands of hits.

The Twitter exchange between Peggy Morrison's co-worker Arianne Summach and Tim Hortons after Summach tweeted and facebooked a campaign to boycott the Tim Hortons Robson Street location. (Arianne Sumach)

In an emailed statement Sunday afternoon, the coffee and doughnut franchise said the incident did not reflect Tim Hortons's values.

"On behalf of Tim Hortons we sincerely apologize," it said. "This owner is committed to personally apologizing and making amends with this individual. He will also be making a meaningful donation to Belkin House, a local Vancouver shelter."

Although the statement promises the owner will personally apologize and make a donation, it doesn't say whether the store owner is the person who poured the water.

Peggy Morrison, who works across the street from the store at 463 Robson St. and watched it happen, said afterwards she phoned and gave a description of the person to a store clerk and was told it was the manager.

Morrison said she was working in her store when she saw a man come out of the Tim Hortons with a bucket of water and pour it under a homeless man who was sleeping with his dog on cardboard and blankets.

A panhandler, who would only identify himself as Pete, says the Tim Hortons on Robson Street has always been good to him. (CBC)
She said the water was deliberately poured under the man's blankets to ensure a good soaking.

She said the individual from the store then poured the remains of the bucket under a second man sleeping on the other side of the door.

Morrison said the man re-emerged from the Tim Hortons with a straw broom and proceeded to sweep beverage cups, sheets of cardboard and the remains of plastic garbage bags from the man's sleeping mat down the sidewalk away from the store.

Morrison's co-worker ArianneSummach took to Twitter and Facebook shortly afterwards calling for a boycott of the Robson Street store.

A panhandler interviewed outside the store Saturday, who would only give his name as Pete, said the outlet has always been nice to him, often bringing him coffee and soup.

He said some people sleep outside the store all week and leave a lot of garbage.

However, Pete said he didn't think it was right to pour water on people using a public street.