Amy England, an Oshawa city councillor and seven months pregnant, claims she was a target of sexist cyber-bullying after a Facebook user posted a photo comparing her to a graphic Canadian anti-smoking ad.
The Facebook group featured a post by one of the page's members, George Pappas, that mocked Amy England's infamous 2010 makeover on the reality show Rags to Red Carpet while on the campaign trail. She would face an audit the next year for her appearance.
“Has anyone else see (sic) these before and after pics of Councillor England?” Pappas wrote, accompanied by the photo. The left side showed England with her present-day look; the right side showed the anti-smoking photo which features a woman with a cataract, forehead wrinkles and rotten teeth.
“It’s completely disturbing on so many levels,” England told the Toronto Star. “As a woman in politics, these kinds of attacks have been constant since I have been in office.”
England also apparently received emails telling her to "close her legs" and "focus on work" when she announced that she will breastfeed her baby at work.
Pappas told the Star that the image is not sexist, and is instead a political parody, mocking England's reality-show makeover and breaking of campaign problems.
“Had it been published in a political magazine, in a newspaper in the political section, I don’t think that anyone would be calling me to speak about it,” he said.
Users of the Facebook group are divided about whether or not the photo amounts to bullying.
This isn't the first time tensions between Oshawa residents and city council have gotten high. On September 3, a fight broke out at a town hall meeting when two men began arguing and a security officer tried to break them up.