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Wednesday, November 06, 2013 

The Diminished Mental Capacity Associated With Serious Drug And Alcohol Abuse Should Require Him To Step Down As Mayor ...

The decision by a prominent Canadian mayor to stay on the job in spite of an admission of cocaine use and "drunken stupors", is likely a good demonstration of his diminished capacity to make sound judgements. For his own physical well-being, and the interests of the City of Toronto, he should step down. He continues to hurt himself and the Office in which he serves. There is no other option. He must resign his office and attend to his serious health concerns.

"Alcohol combines the elements of both mental illness and physical disease. Alcoholism is classified as a substance abuse disorder in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-III). Mental and emotional symptoms of alcoholism exist long before the grave physical complications of the disease appear. The mental symptoms consist of loss of control (taking in larger amounts of alcohol over a longer period of time than the person intends); persistent desire to drink (one or more unsuccessful efforts to cut down or control drinking); continued drinking in spite of adverse social, occupational, or legal consequences; and frequent intoxication or withdrawal symptoms when expected to fulfill major obligations at work, school, or home. These are all behavioral or mental symptoms, which, unless interrupted permanently by treatment, will inevitably lead to physical complications of alcoholism. Cirrhosis of the liver, chronic brain deterioration, and other grave organic consequences occur as a result of long-term heavy drinking, but the core of the disease is the cluster of behavioral symptoms that constitute the mental disorder called alcoholism. Consequently, the treatment of alcoholism targets the mind rather than any physical system. So alcoholism and all other substance abuse disorders are mental disorders, with a high physical complication rate."
Betty Ford Clinic

Progressive Bloggers

I'm no Rob Ford apologist, but if he indeed has a diagnosable addiction, by law he is entitled to accommodation. That doesn't mean he gets to stay in his position and do what he pleases, but addictions are a mental health issue that is protected under human rights law. If his capacity to lead is in fact diminished because of a mental health issue, he could be required to take a leave to seek treatment, but he should not be forced to permanently step down. Again, I don't love the guy or his politics, but
I think calling for his resignation sends a dangerous message to employers who might think they can similarly demand a resignation or fire their cashiers/accountants/mechanics, etc. who are battling addictions.

I agree with much of your comments. If a surgeon had diminished capacity due to substance abuse, I agree. Remove him/her from their position and get them to seek rehab and recovery. Thereafter, work to integrate them back to their profession. However, with elected office, it is NOT a 'profession'. Toronto has a deputy mayor, there is a deputy PM and in Wash DC there is a Vice President. If an elected official, in high office is not sufficently capable of full capacity, they should be removed and rehabilitated. Thereafter, they could attempt to seek office again. Mayor Ford does not have a human 'right' to white knuckle his Office. He must resign.

Ford is a very good friend of Harper's. Ford refuses to resign, just as Harper does. Harper has no ethics nor morals, what-so-ever.

Canada has become a cesspool of corruption, because of Harper.

Harper cut his Senators throats, to save his own miserable hide. Problem is? Harper has told so many lies, he is no longer credible. Everyday Harper came up with a different story. Harper needs a,full mental evaluation. His behavior is bizarre.

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