Ipswich councillor Paul Tully reprimanded for posting sexist meme to his personal Facebook page

A veteran Ipswich City councillor has faced criticism after he posted a sexist meme on his personal Facebook page, sparking complaints from ratepayers and an external investigation.

Councillor Paul Tully posted the meme entitled “Funny Friday” to social media in April.

The post read: “I asked my trainer which machine at the gym I should use to impress beautiful women.”

“He pointed outside and said, ‘the ATM Machine'”.

The post sparked half a dozen complaints from ratepayers concerned the content showed a lack of respect for women that reinforced gender stereotypes.

As a result, an independent company Wise Workplace conducted an investigation where Councillor Tully was interviewed and asked to explain his behaviour.

After reviewing the report, the council has now released the findings of the investigation.

Councillor Tully told investigators “the page was not his official councillor page, that the posts were put up by his proxy, rather than himself and that it was removed after approximately an hour when negative comments had been noticed”.

Fellow councillors voted that Councillor Tully be punished via an official letter of warning.

Mayor Teresa Harding said it was the first time the Ipswich City Council had considered such a matter.

“I am proud to say we set the bar extremely high when it comes to conduct in this council,” she said.

Councillor Tully has been contacted for comment.