(JTA) — San Diego Mayor Bob Filner announced he will undergo therapy amid calls for his resignation over allegations of sexual misconduct.
In a brief statement to reporters Friday, Filner said he would be entering a treatment facility on Aug. 5 for two weeks of intensive therapy.
“During this time period I will be in the clinic full-time, though every morning and evening I will be briefed on city activities,” Filner said.
The mayor, who is Jewish, has been the target of mounting accusations that he made unwanted sexual advances toward women, including inappropriate touching.
Irine McCormack Jackson, Filner’s former director of communications, filed a lawsuit against the mayor last week alleging he had frequently put her in a headlock, made sexual comments and once said she should work without her panties on. On Thursday, four more women made accusations that Filner had touched them inappropriately.
Filner has so far rebuffed calls for his resignation, including most recently from Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the Florida congresswoman and chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, who said she was “personally offended by his actions.”
In his statement, Filner said his actions were “inexcusable” and issued public apologies to the women involved, the people of San Diego and members of his staff. He said treatment would continue even after he returned to work on Aug. 19.
“I must become a better person,” Filner said.
Filner was a congressman for 20 years before being elected mayor in November, the first Democrat to hold that office in two decades.