Top News

O’Regan says he’s 40 days alcohol-free


St. John’s South-Mount Pearl MP Seamus O’Regan says he’s back to work and 40 days alcohol-free. In a lengthy post on Facebook, O’Regan said he spent Christmas and New Year’s in a treatment centre in Ontario after realizing that alcohol was a problem in his life.

Seamus O'Regan, flanked by supporters, makes his acceptance speech in St. John’s following his win in the district of St. John's South in October. He recently announced he has entered a wellness program to adopt an alcohol-free lifestyle.

“Over the last year or two, alcohol was becoming a part of my daily life. I regularly had several drinks at the end of most days. Sometimes more than several drinks,” O’Regan said on Facebook.

“I was still working effectively and competently, but I realized, over time, that being competent was not good enough. I was far from my best self. And the simple truth is that I owe my best self to my marriage, to my family, to my friends, and to my constituents. I realized that, for me, just trying to use alcohol less — or more responsibly — was not working.”

Related content:

Letter: O’Regan situation raises serious questions

Column: Beating the booze will be a tough battle for O’Regan

Story: MP O’Regan seeking help for alcohol abuse

O’Regan was elected as a Liberal MP in the Oct. 19 general election. Just after New Year’s he announced on Twitter that he’d entered a treatment program for alcohol.

On Facebook, he gave a bit more detail.

“I did my homework, and chose a facility that I thought was right for me. I entered treatment on the last day that Parliament sat in December,” O’Regan wrote. “I did my House duty that day. I completed my work as an MP and I left Parliament Hill. I stopped to buy an armful of books and — on my own — flew out of Ottawa to Toronto, where I presented myself at a nearby treatment facility.”

He said as of today he’s back to work as a representative for his constituents.

“The people of St John's South-Mount Pearl have given me their trust. That vote of trust was my wake-up call,” he said. “Newfoundland and Labrador faces huge fiscal and economic challenges. We need all hands on deck. As of today, I am reporting back for duty. I will be a clear and effective voice in Parliament for the people who sent me there.”

 

O’Regan’s full statement:

Statement from MP Seamus O'Regan:

Over the last year or two, alcohol was becoming a part of my daily life. I regularly had several drinks at the end of most days. Sometimes more than several drinks.

I was still working effectively and competently, but I realized, over time, that being competent was not good enough. I was far from my best self. And the simple truth is that I owe my best self to my marriage, to my family, to my friends, and to my constituents. I realized that, for me, just trying to use alcohol less - or more responsibly - was not working.

Talking with family and close friends about all of this in December, I made the decision to acknowledge that I had a problem, and that the solution lies with me. I also acknowledged that I needed some help.

I did my homework, and chose a facility that I thought was right for me. I entered treatment on the last day that Parliament sat in December. I did my house duty that day. I completed my work as an MP and I left Parliament Hill. I stopped to buy an armful of books and - on my own - flew out of Ottawa to Toronto, where I presented myself at a nearby treatment facility.

I was there for both Christmas and New Year's. In fact, I was there until just a few days ago.

I have spent the last 40 days alcohol-free. I have had the benefit of many hours of counseling, meditation and acquiring the tools to remain alcohol-free.

I feel stronger, healthier, and more engaged than I have in a long time.

I am ready to be the most effective and accessible Member of Parliament I can possibly be. I have spent a great deal of my life around the political process. I know how stressful it can be. I also know how fulfilling political life can be.

The people of St John's South-Mount Pearl have given me their trust. That vote of trust was my wake-up call.

Newfoundland and Labrador faces huge fiscal and economic challenges. We need all hands on deck.

As of today, I am reporting back for duty. I will be a clear and effective voice in Parliament for the people who sent me there.

I have dealt with my personal challenges and I shall continue to do so. But, ultimately, my personal challenges are secondary to the needs of my constituents.

That is my message today.

And, to all those who took the time to write and call with their well wishes while I was in treatment, thank you.

Recent Stories