The incident took place at a hunger fundraiser in Hawaii when Island 98.5 morning show co-hosts Kreyz Oshiro and Vic Harris mocked local entertainer Paula Fuga who shared with the show that she had to eat food out of garbage cans when she was younger.
Fuga shared the story during the station fundraiser for the Hawaii Foodbank. “When I was a little kid, I used to be homeless on the beach so I benefited from things like this, from people giving. It’s something that I really don’t talk about … I’ve eaten from a trash can when I was a little girl. I’ve been hungry before.”
Here’s what the hosts then said, according to The Honolulu Star-Advertiser.
Harris: “Is it right out of the trash can or do you put it on a plate first?”
Fuga: “No like I could cry thinking about it. Like in the dark with my hand from a trash can.”
Fuga then asked the hosts for a box of tissues Harris replied, “No, but we got a trash can right over there by the bar.
Oshiro: “What just in case she’s hungry?”
Fuga then said, “I don’t eat from a trash can anymore.”
iHeartMedia General Manager Chuck Cotton issued a statement on Monday stating that Harris and Oshiro were no longer part of the morning crew. “The on air comments made by DJs ‘Slick Vic’ Harris and ‘KreyZ’ Oshiro this past Friday were highly insensitive and do not represent the values of Island 98.5 (or iHeartRadio Honolulu) and our commitment to the communities we serve. We want to sincerely apologize to Paula Fuga and to any others who were offended. Please know that the situation has been addressed internally.”
iHeart then issued a joint statement with Fuga. “Paula Fuga’s courageous transparency at Tanks Fo’ Giving has afforded a renewed opportunity to better support the crisis of community hunger in the islands. An awakening and a reckoning of truth is now on the table thanks to Paula’s willingness to move forward in a unified effort to address this crisis.”