Toronto Mayor Rob Ford has reached out to all of city council, inviting them to his office on the date of his return from rehab for a private, “informal meeting.”
Mr. Ford, who returns to City Hall on Monday afternoon after a two-month leave of absence, will first address reporters Monday afternoon, before speaking to councillors.
“The mayor feels that an important part of resuming his duties is reaching out to the members of council to hear directly from you,” says the e-mail invitation sent Friday to councillors by the mayor’s chief of staff, Dan Jacobs.
“The mayor wants to hear your comments and discuss issues facing Toronto and how we can work together to move forward in a constructive and collaborative way.”
Mr. Ford has been on a leave of absence since late April for substance-abuse treatment at a rehab facility in Muskoka.
The mayor’s spokesman, Amin Massoudi, said the meeting with council was Mr. Ford’s idea, but would not elaborate on what the mayor plans on discussing. He also said that the mayor will not be taking questions from reporters on Monday.
He added, however, Mr. Ford has taken his time in rehab “very seriously and he’s looking forward” to resuming his duties.
“The mayor has undergone many hundreds of hours of therapy – just under 500 hours of therapy, including group therapy and other one-on-one therapy,” he said.
Mayor Ford will have been absent from City Hall for 60 full days upon his return on Monday. In order to complete 500 hours, he would have had to have received more than eight hours of therapy every single day he was gone.
Mr. Massoudi said the mayor will not take questions from the media when he speaks with reporters on Monday.