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MLA for Chester-St. Margaret’s seeking professional help after driving under the influence

Click to play video: 'Nova Scotia Liberal MLA to seek help after being charged with driving under the influence' Nova Scotia Liberal MLA to seek help after being charged with driving under the influence
ABOVE: Nova Scotia Liberal MLA to seek help after being charged with driving under the influence – Oct 15, 2019

Hugh MacKay was charged with driving under the influence during Thanksgiving weekend, the MLA for Chester-St. Margaret’s said in a statement released by the Nova Scotia Liberal Caucus Office on Tuesday morning.

“I have always believed in being fully open and transparent with my constituents. As such, I feel it is necessary to disclose what is a deeply personal and regretful incident,” MacKay said.

READ MORE: Liberal MLA deletes, apologizes for Facebook post that links health care cost to Nova Scotians’ ‘lifestyle choices’

In response to a request for more information about the incident, Halifax District RCMP spokesperson Cpl. Lisa Croteau sent Global News an e-mail statement, without mentioning MacKay’s name.

Croteau said that on Oct. 13, at approximately 11:30 p.m., officers arrested a 64-year-old man from Glen Haven without incident following a traffic stop on Indian Point Road.

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She said the man was released and is scheduled to appear in Halifax provincial court on Nov. 26 at 10 a.m. to face charges of impaired operation of a vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of 80 mg per 100 mL or higher.

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MacKay says he has struggled with alcohol addiction issues for several years and has been actively undergoing treatment since 2004.

“This relapse has not only impacted myself, my family, my colleagues and my community – but as an elected official, I am also aware of how much this news may impact people from throughout the province,” he said.

“I am truly and deeply sorry for my actions and the negative effect they have had on all those I love and respect.”

MacKay said he will take steps to seek further professional help and medical treatment options.

Stephen D. Tobin, the director of strategic communications for the caucus office, said there have been no talks on whether or not MacKay will be stepping down as an MLA, adding that the Liberal office is respecting MacKay’s request for privacy.

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