POLITICS

Rob Ford Sit-In: Group Moves Protest To NewsTalk1010

05/22/2013 10:35 EDT
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TORONTO, ON - MAY 17: Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, at the PFLAG flag raising. The Mayor faces allegations that their is a video which he reportedly appears to be smoking crack cocaine at City Hall. (Steve Russell/Toronto Star via Getty Images)

UPDATE: The organizers of the Rob Ford sit-in have moved the protest to outside the offices of radio station NewsTalk 1010. Doug and Rob Ford host a weekly call-in show at the station on Sunday.

"The point has been raised, and is well taken, that holding the protest outside of his house could be frightening or damaging to his family.

Let us state clearly and openly: It is not our intent, nor would we ever wish to cause harm to Rob Ford's family," the organizer wrote on a page.

"To that end, we have decided to move this action to a place where we know Rob Ford will be on Sunday afternoon -- outside the studios of NewsTalk 1010, the radio station where Rob and Doug Ford host their weekly radio show."

The Ford brothers cancelled last Sunday's show. It is not known whether this week's show will air.

A group of "concerned citizens" are organizing a sit-in outside mayor Rob Ford's home on Sunday.

The group says that since Mayor Ford has refused to answer questions about recent allegations that he smoked crack, they must try to get the answers directly.

“For six days he’s refused to answer questions about that. I’m not a political guy, I hate politics but to me this is just ridiculous," Trevor Coleman, the sit-in's organizer and creator of the page, told the Huffington Post Canada.

"As a city, we need to take back control of this story. We need to show the world that we will not stand being ignored by the man who is supposed to be our leader," the event page also states.

Reaction to the sit-in have been mixed on Twitter and other social media outlets. Many critics have said the protest would unfairly punish Ford's family. But some people have also said that the sit-in may be one of the few ways to get an answer from a mayor who has consistently dodged the media.

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Rob Ford Sit-In

"He’s consistently blurred the boundaries between public and private life," said Coleman, citing such scandals as soliciting donations to the Ford football foundation on City of Toronto letterhead and the conflict of interest questions surrounding Deco Labels, the Ford family business.

"He’s unwilling to respect those boundaries. Why should we respect those boundaries for him," Coleman said.

But Coleman admits that the criticism from other political activists may push him to move the protest. He's considering organizing the sit-in outside the lobby of Newstalk 1010, where the Ford brothers hold their Sunday talk show.

Coleman also said he plans on reaching out to police. "I don’t think this is something that people should be arrested over," he said.

Last week, Gawker and the Toronto Star revealed that a video reportedly exists showing Mayor Ford smoking crack and uttering racist and homophobic slurs. The owners of the video, reportedly Toronto drug dealers, are asking for a six-figure sum to release the video to a media organization. Gawker is now trying to raise $200,000 for the video through crowdfunding site Indiegogo.

The mayor has gone quiet after issuing a brief denial on Friday. He canceled a weekly radio show that he runs with his brother and did not address the allegations at City Hall on Tuesday.