Two months after Jessica Mulroney was accused of “textbook white privilege” and had her TV show I Do, Redo stripped from streaming channels, the stylist has returned to social media.
She posted a brief Instagram video of her twin sons, 10-year-old Brian and John, blowing out the candles on their birthday cake.
“Happy 10th to my twin babies,” Mulroney, 40, wrote, before veering into the scandal.
“My incredible family have had to witness their mom in the worst state. These two boys have not left my side and gave me the will to live and work hard when everything fell apart. They deserve the best birthday. Only up from here.”
In June, Sasha Exeter, a lifestyle influencer and writer, exposed several alleged interactions with Mulroney, saying that she displayed “very problematic behaviour” after Exeter posted support of protest movement Black Lives Matter.
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I’ve been silent. Not anymore! I’m used to being so transparent on this platform. I think it’s the main reason why most of you follow me. Today, I’m opening up about something that has been haunting me for the last week. I have felt like a complete fraud fighting for racial equality and using my voice openly here, while letting a white woman silence mine behind closed doors. In sharing this very personal story, I know that I am risking a lot. Opening myself up to criticism, bullying and potential ramifications with my job in this space. However, I must speak my truth. Enough is enough. Hopefully my voice will be heard by many and help change things for the next generation and for my daughter Maxwell… because I will be dammed if my child ever has to deal with this level of ignorance.
“Listen, I am by no means calling Jess a racist but what I will say is this, she is very well aware of her wealth, her perceived power and privilege because of the colour of her skin,” Exeter said in the 11-minute-plus video. “And that, my friends, gave her the momentary confidence to come for my livelihood in writing.”
In an IGTV video, Exeter claimed that Mulroney took a public call to action in regard to fighting anti-Black racism as a personal attack. She accused Mulroney of “textbook white privilege” and sending her “a threat in writing.”
Mulroney wrote a lengthy public apology shortly after Exeter’s IGTV video was posted, which, per screengrabs later shared (and now deleted) by Exeter, was followed up with a threatening direct message.
“Liable (sic) suit,” Mulroney wrote. “Good luck.”
CTV announced the removal of Mulroney’s reality show I Do, Redo shortly thereafter, saying the recent conduct of the host conflicted with the broadcaster’s “commitment to diversity and equality.”
The Bay also released a statement announcing that Mulroney would no longer be the face of bridal company Kleinfeld Canada.
In a separate social media post, Mulroney said she and Exeter had a disagreement and that Exeter “rightfully” called her out. Mulroney then issued a statement regarding “the events that have transpired over the last few days.” She said it’s clear she has “work to do.”
“I realize more than ever how being a white, privileged woman has put me far ahead of so many, and in particular those in the Black community. And while I can’t change the past, I can do my part to do better in the future,” Mulroney said.
“I was wrong and for that I am truly sorry.”
On June 22, a few weeks after the fallout, Mulroney’s husband Ben announced he was stepping down from his longtime anchoring gig at CTV’s eTalk.
He said he’d decided to “pass the mic” and make way for new people to take on his role.
“Last Saturday, I watched on CTV as my colleagues led a national conversation about how we can take action against systemic racism. That conversation showed me, more than ever, we need more Black voices, more Indigenous voices and more people of colour in the media,” Ben, 44, said in the statement. “And that is why I have decided to immediately step away from my role as an anchor at eTalk to create a space for a new perspective and a new voice.
“It is my hope that the new anchor is Black, Indigenous or a person of colour who can use this important platform to inspire, lead and make change.”
Ben will continue to co-host the morning show and contribute to special assignments, like red-carpet events. He will also develop and produce projects for Bell Media Studios.
Multiple Canadian TV personalities — many of them from Bell Media — expressed support for Mulroney underneath her latest Instagram post.
Cityline host Tracy Moore, who posted a message about the scandal right after it happened, wrote a pleasant message to Mulroney, saying: “Happy birthday to your baby boys … wishing you so much joy today.”
Traci Melchor of The Social also wished “happiest of birthdays” to the boys, as did American TV star Mindy Kaling. Of course, Mulroney has had a long-standing relationship with former royal Meghan Markle, but as of this writing, it’s unclear whether the pair have maintained the friendship.
— With files from Meaghan Wray
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