New Democratic MPP Joel Harden is joining a chorus of voices calling for College Ward City Councillor Rick Chiarelli to step down.
He and the Ontario NDP are launching a petition to see the provincial government change its tune on legislation that would give municipalities more power to remove councillors, even though Ontario Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing Steve Clark has already said he's not in favour of changing the provincial law.
The new petition, on the Ontario NDP's website, says, "Ottawa's Integrity Commissioner has confirmed Chiarelli committed repeated acts of sexual misconduct against female staff. Local residents and his fellow councillors want Chiarelli gone. City Councils should have the power to make that happen in cases of demonstrated wrongdoing like this one, not be forced to fight for a resignation."
The petition is "calling on the government to introduce legislation that gives municipalities the tools they need to make decisions about elected officials found guilty of serious misconduct."
Ottawa City Council passes a motion last week, formally calling on Chiarelli to step down as city councillor, and then passed more sanctions against him.
Orléans' Member of Provincial Parliament Stephen Blais called on Queen's Park, Tuesday, to take action and create a way to punish elected officials who abuse the system.
Chiarelli continues to deny all allegations against him and says he will be refraining from commenting on the situation until a hearing on January 13, 2021.