Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Support Quality Journalism.
The Globe and Mail
First Access to Latest
Investment News
Collection of curated
e-books and guides
Inform your decisions via
Globe Investor Tools
per week
for first 24 weeks

Enjoy unlimited digital access
Cancel Anytime
Enjoy Unlimited Digital Access
Get full access to
Just $1.99per week for the first 24weeks
Just $1.99per week for the first 24weeks
var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](,dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){window.requestAnimationFrame(function() {var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))});}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1); // via darwin-bg var slideIndex = 0; carousel(); function carousel() { var i; var x = document.getElementsByClassName("subs_valueprop"); for (i = 0; i < x.length; i++) { x[i].style.display = "none"; } slideIndex++; if (slideIndex> x.length) { slideIndex = 1; } x[slideIndex - 1].style.display = "block"; setTimeout(carousel, 2500); } //

TVO host Steve Paikin says the allegations of sexual harassment made against him by former Toronto mayoral candidate Sarah Thomson are “complete fiction” and is vowing to fight to restore his reputation.


TVO host Steve Paikin says the allegations of sexual harassment made against him by former Toronto mayoral candidate Sarah Thomson are "complete fiction" and is vowing to fight to restore his reputation.

Publicly funded TVOntario announced on Monday that it had hired a lawyer to conduct an arm's-length investigation of the allegations, while leaving Mr. Paikin in his job.

The well-known broadcaster had initially declined on Monday to publicly address the allegations. But late Tuesday afternoon, in a Facebook post he said was written by himself at 4 a.m. and "not a committee of lawyers or spin doctors," he broke his silence.

Story continues below advertisement

"I've spent 35 years building my reputation. In one fell swoop, these lies have prompted outrageous headlines and connected me to a story to which I have no business being connected," Mr. Paikin wrote. "Well, all that ends today. Today, I begin to reclaim my reputation and fight back against these scurrilous allegations."

The allegations – made first in articles on Ms. Thomson's website,, that thinly disguised his identity – are that Mr. Paikin, while having lunch at an upscale Toronto restaurant with her and her unnamed assistant during the 2010 mayoral campaign, demanded that she have sex with him in order to appear on his show.

She says she left the table and immediately phoned her campaign manager, who she didn't name, to tell him what happened. But two of her former campaign advisers, including one of her former campaign managers, say they have no recollection of any such incident.

Over the weekend, Ms. Thomson also sent Mr. Paikin an e-mail, demanding he step down. He provided the e-mail to TVO, he said, in the interest of transparency, and spent two hours answering questions from TVO management and its lawyers on Sunday.

In his Facebook post, Mr. Paikin says the allegations left him "gobsmacked" and that the events described by Ms. Thomson did not occur.

"I mean no harm to Sarah Thomson. But Sarah, you and I both know the incident you described never happened. It's complete fiction," Mr. Paikin wrote. "To be clear, I did not have sex, suggest, request, imply, or joke about having sex with you."

Mr. Paikin's post says he fears many will "believe the lie, especially when it comes to this subject," while also stating that "the #MeToo movement is too important to be undermined by spurious allegations."

Story continues below advertisement

But he says he has been heartened by the support he has received and TVO's decision to allow him to stay in his job, and that he welcomes the investigation.

"You've defamed me Sarah. I have no idea why, but you have. And I simply can't allow that to stand," Mr. Paikin writes. "The quest to reclaim my reputation, which you've tried to destroy, begins now. I look forward to vindication."

Ms. Thomson did not respond to requests for comment Monday and did not immediately respond to a voice-mail message on Tuesday. But she was on Twitter, commenting on Mr. Paikin's move.

"I didn't go public + I refused all media requests. Paikin went public he's obviously trying to scare other women into silence," Ms. Thomson said on Twitter. In another post on Twitter, she said: "It's a bit scary the number of men that are bashing me today."

Contacted by e-mail, Mr. Paikin would not say whether he intended to launch a defamation lawsuit against Ms. Thomson, and said he had not seen her Twitter comments: "The first piece of advice I was given was, don't read the papers, don't get on social media and don't watch the news. So I haven't. No clue what's going on out there but I've said what I wanted to. Period."

Your Globe

Build your personal news feed

  1. Follow topics and authors relevant to your reading interests.
  2. Check your Following feed daily, and never miss an article. Access your Following feed from your account menu at the top right corner of every page.

Follow the author of this article:

View more suggestions in Following Read more about following topics and authors
Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to
Comments are closed

We have closed comments on this story for legal reasons or for abuse. For more information on our commenting policies and how our community-based moderation works, please read our Community Guidelines and our Terms and Conditions.

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies