Rob Ford is the only Canadian mayor that has reached celebrity status around the globe. The infamous mayor has gained worldwide popularity ever since his addiction issues came to light. Recently, he has taken steps to admit his problems and seek treatment in a secret rehabilitation facility. Meanwhile, more and more questions arose about his troubled family life. It seem as if his drama may have destroyed his marriage, as well as landing him in rehab.
Ford’s troubled encounters with the law started long before he was elected mayor of Toronto. Since marrying his wife Renata in 2000, police have been called to their residence four times for family disputes. Reportedly, Ford has threatened to both kill Renata and run away with the kids. However, no charges have ever been formally made. Now, as the mayor finds himself between a rock and a hard place, it has become apparent that the couple may be getting divorced. Although there has been no official confirmation, a video showing a drunken Ford talking about hitting someone and discussing his failing marriage has become public.
In May 2013, Gawker reported they acquired a video where the mayor was supposedly smoking crack cocaine. In response, the mayor initially denied the allegations. Then, later on in the year, he admitted to the allegations, apologizing to the public when police confirmed they had a video proving the mayor was smoking crack cocaine. His behavior made news around the world.
Now, the mayor is making headlines again. With the October 2014 mayoral elections coming up, Ford has taken a leave of absence to seek professional help. Supposedly, the mayor flew to Chicago because of their amazing rehabilitation facilities. However, a Canadian newspaper reported that after the mayor landed in the U.S., he was turned back before he could officially enter the country. The Globe and Mail reported receiving information from Roy Norton, the Consul General of Canada in Chicago, saying, “He [Ford] voluntarily withdrew his application to enter the USA, and he was not denied entry, per se.” Norton said he learned of the situation from a U.S. customs officer. Meanwhile, U.S. border officials were unable to comment on the particular case, but one reason people may be denied entry into the U.S. is a history of drug use. However, Ford was able to enter the U.S. in early March 2014 when he was invited to be a guest on Jimmy Kimmel Live despite admitting to drug use in 2013.
In a statement, Ford admitted his problems and announced he was taking a leave of absence. “I have a problem with alcohol, and the choices I have made while under the influence. I have struggled with this for some time,” Ford said. “I have tried to deal with these issues by myself over the past year. I know that I need professional help, and I am now 100 percent committed to getting myself right.” The mayor’s lawyer Dennis Morris and his brother Doug Ford have both stated that Ford has entered a treatment facility, but neither would comment further on the mayor’s current location. In addition, they also did not mention whether Ford’s drama was the reason for the destroyed marriage and rehab.
The biggest question now lies with the mayor. If he was unable to enter the U.S. due to his drug use, then where is he? Chicago is said to be home to one of the best rehab institutions. So, if the mayor is not receiving help from there, is he receiving the help that he needs? While Ford is at an undisclosed location, there has been confirmation made by his doctor that yes, indeed, the mayor is receiving treatment.
Those who are close to Ford have also confirmed the statement, and his colleagues are generally supportive and happy that the wayward mayor is finally getting help. “I don’t think anyone in Toronto needs to know,” Councillor Gord Perks commented. “That’s a private health matter. Government at the city of Toronto does not have the right and should not have the right to investigate private health matters.” Meanwhile, Ford himself has told the Toronto Sun he is enjoying rehab, saying “Rehab is amazing. It reminds me of football camp. Kind of like the Washington Redskins camp I went to as a kid.” Ford also mentioned he was enjoying the rehabilitation facility, and “it was worth every dime.” However, Ford’s personal life, including the alleged divorce, has been kept behind closed doors.
Since releasing the statement, the mayor has issued another saying that according to the policies of the rehab center, it is forbidden to discuss the treatment facility with the media, and he is no longer going to give interviews to the Toronto Sun. With everyone growing increasingly tired of Rob Ford’s drama, it also may have destroyed his marriage and be the reason why mayor needs rehab at all.
By Ivelina Kunina