TORONTO - A Toronto city councillor broke into tears Monday as she told a news conference she had pleaded guilty to driving with more than 80 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood.
Ana Bailao was charged with over 80 and impaired driving last October after police pulled her over early on Oct. 16 for driving without her lights on.
Bailao says she has accepted a punishment of a 12-month ban on driving and a $1,000 fine, and admitted her blood alcohol was .130 when she was pulled over.
Bailao said through tears that she had originally entered a not guilty plea but decided changing that plea was the right thing to do.
The impaired driving charge was dropped.
Bailao called her actions "a bad choice" and said she regrets getting in her car that night.
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford issued a statement late Monday saying Bailao was a good councillor and that he looked forward to continuing to work with her.
"Councillor Ana Bailao did something wrong and she's taken full responsibility for her actions," Ford said. "I have faith in the justice system and the court's decision regarding the appropriate consequences."
(CFRB, AM640, The Canadian Press)
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Talk About The Issues
If you had alcohol or drugs in your past, you may want to consider telling your kids about it, Murie says. A 2008 survey of more than 6,000 American teenagers found that they were <a href="http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/parenting/teens/alcohol-and-drug-use/you-did-drugs-what-do-you-tell-your-kids-when-they-ask/article2216392/" target="_hplink">50 per cent less likely to use drugs</a> if they had "learned a lot" about them from their parents.
Be The Role Model
"It starts with the parents themselves and their own consumption of drinking alcohol. It's the kind of mentoring they are showing," Murie says.
Don't Be Permissive
"It's unacceptable to allow kids to consume alcohol in front of you," Murie says. Parents need to work with their kids to control alcohol use -- especially alcohol abuse involving young people.
Parents should always be accessible to their children, Murie says. "Work with your teens to give them alternatives if they do get into a [uncomfortable] situation. They need a phone or a prepaid taxi cab card if possible," he says.
Understand The Risks And Take Control
Even if a party isn't happening at your home, parents should still be able to take control, Murie says. "[It's about understanding the risks and [the fact] that alcohol is alcohol. One shot or glass of wine, it doesn't matter." Murie also says that if your kids do attend a house party, parents should call the host parent beforehand to find out if alcohol will be in the household -- especially if kids are underage.