A council has been forced to apologise after posting a “misogynistic” tweet urging residents to treat coronavirus “like your mother-in-law”.
The posts on Stockport Council’s Facebook and Twitter accounts, since deleted, told people in the Greater Manchester town that “the trick to social distancing is acting like your mother-in-law’s around every corner!”
Councillor Tom Morrison, who represents the city's Cheadle Hulme North ward, led the calls for the posts to be taken down.
While he recognised the council was “trying to engage with audiences”, posts that “play to ridiculous stereotypes that marginalise women is simply not on”.
He cited a south Manchester domestic violence charity that reported a 160 per cent spike in calls during the early stages of lockdown.
The UN has described domestic abuse as a global “shadow pandemic” during the coronavirus crisis as lockdowns across the world confined fractured families inside their homes.
More than 40,000 calls and contacts were made to the National Domestic Abuse Helpline during the first three months of lockdown, most by women seeking help.
Figures from the charity Refuge, which runs the helpline, said calls to the service were nearly 80 per cent higher than usual.
A Stockport Council spokesperson said: “The council has taken down the social media posts. We apologise for any upset caused."