The woman appointed to sit as Toronto’s Ward 1 councillor until the end of the current term has resigned hours after she was appointed by a majority of city councillors.
Rosemarie Bryan quit as the successor to former Coun. Michael Ford after homophobic past social media posts surfaced.
The posts were shared on Twitter by Jonathan Goldsbie, news website and podcast network Canadaland’s news editor.
“I am so devastated that past social media posts I have made are now being thrown against my decades of commitment to the community,” Bryan said in a statement Friday evening.
“I do not want to make anyone in our city feel like they are not loved and not part of our community.”
Bryan was selected from 21 candidates who applied to fill Ford’s old council seat for the remainder of the council term, the city said. She told councillors she worked for the Salvation Army.
She would have remained in place until Nov. 14.
Bryan would also have been the third council appointee for the remainder of the term.
Earlier, Toronto City Council appointed former Coun. Joe Mihevc to replace Joe Cressy and Robin Buxton Potts to sit in NDP MPP Kristyn Wong-Tam’s seat.
Twenty-one of the 23 councillors present Friday voted in favour of Bryan’s appointment, made the same day that Michael Ford was appointed by his uncle, Premier Doug Ford, to work as Ontario’s Minister of Citizenship and Multiculturalism.
“These posts are not acceptable for a Toronto City Councillor,” Toronto Mayor John Tory said in a statement. He said he would not have voted in favour of Bryan if he had been aware of her social media posts earlier.
“I totally disagree with any homophobic or transphobic views. I absolutely support our 2SLGBTQ+ residents,” he said. “City Councillors are expected to set an example when it comes to consistency with our shared values.”
Tory said municipal staff will be reviewing the vetting process for appointees following the revaluation.
“I recognize councillors were not aware of those posts before today’s discussion and now that they are, I recognize many would not have cast their vote for me,” Bryan said.