Report: Ex-councilwoman Leticia Ozuna asks for Elisa Chan's resignation

Ozuna cites secret recording in which her transgendered spouse is discussed

Published On: Aug 23 2013 10:51:34 AM CDT   Updated On: Aug 23 2013 10:45:33 AM CDT
SAN ANTONIO -

Ex-San Antonio City Councilwoman Leticia Ozuna has called for the resignation of current District 9 Councilwoman Elisa Chan after comments she made regarding Ozuna's transgendered spouse were released by the San Antonio Express-News Thursday night.

In the recording, Express-News reporter Brian Chasnoff reports, Chan is heard discussing Ozuna's family life -- including her marriage to Sofia Parafina, "a transgendered individual."

The newly released recording was, according to Chasnoff, part of a longer recording made in secret by former aide James Stevens several months ago during a staff meeting to discuss the city's nondiscrimination ordinance, which would add protections for sexual orientation and gender identity.

According to Chasnoff, the Express-News had withheld the portion of the recording regarding Ozuna "to protect Ozuna's privacy."

Chasnoff said Friday that Ozuna agreed to "address the portion regarding her family," and so this additional portion was made public.

Stevens leaked the full 15-minute recording to the Express-News last week, which led to a firestorm of controversy around Chan, who is heard in the tape making disparaging comments about the LGBTQ community.

Despite a written apology released Friday morning -- in which Chan says she apologizes profusely for "referencing (Ozuna's family's) lives in our private conversation" -- Ozuna told the Express-News on Friday that she believes Chan should step down.

"I am terribly saddened to learn that me and my family were used as subjects of ridicule and criticism by Elisa Chan and her staff,” Ozuna said in the statement released to the Express-News. "No words can adequately express both the anger and sadness our family feels as we deal with this disclosure. She has unequivocally disrespected all LBGTQ families, including mine."

As of this publication, Chan has not made any public comments regarding Ozuna's request for her resignation.

Mayor Julian Castro said on Friday he could not comment on the call for Chan’s resignation because he had not heard what Ozuna said about the matter.

After polling City Council, only three members -- Ivy Taylor of District 2, Rebecca Viagran of District 3 and Ron Nirenberg of District 8 -- said they had no comment.

District 7’s Cris Medina said, “The decision should be left to Ms. Chan and her constituents.”

The remaining council members did not respond to the informal poll.