Doug Ford, Toronto city councillor and older brother to Mayor Rob Ford, landed himself in hot water Friday when he said that proposed showers in Nathan Phillips Square would "turn in to nothing but a bathhouse."
He followed up that comment by saying "there would be hanky panky" at the public showers designed for cyclists who commute to the square and City Hall. He also asked whether there would be "towel boys" at the facility.
The comments were quickly derided by his fellow councillors and called homophobic.
"It is going to turn into a bathhouse" Cllr Doug Ford shouts at councillors RE: Bike Station #TOpoli— Don Peat (@reporterdonpeat) May 10, 2013
Ford first defended himself and said he wasn't homophobic, but later apologized for the comment. Not, however, before he was mocked by many on Twitter. Ford also proposed that the city install a splash pad for kids at the square, reports the Toronto Star.
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Doug Ford has long made his opposition to proposed bike facilities at Nathan Phillips Square clear. “We’re taking away parking spaces down here at city hall that is creating $70,000 worth of revenue, and — get ready for this folks — they’re putting in showers for the bike riders to come down here, to the tune of $1.2-million. That’s the gravy train, that is reckless spending,” Ford told the National Post in April.
His brother, Mayor Rob Ford, has been criticized for not attending the city's annual Pride Parade.
“Mr. Ford's decision to absent himself is an unmistakable snub, not just to an important city festival but to the whole gay community,” Globe and Mail columnist Marcus Gee wrote back in 2011.
Doug Ford has said he would consider running for the provincial Tories if an election were held in the next few months.