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Ruling handed out in Cunningham harassment scandal

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Photo: Video by kgun9.com

Ruling handed out in Cunningham harassment scandal

CREATED Jul 3, 2012

Reporter: Aaron Brackett

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - City Hall is still reeling after the latest controversy to rock Tucson's local government, and councilmembers spoke out only hours after the findings were released.

A report from the city attorney released Tuesday finds Councilman Paul Cunningham in violation of sexual harassment policies during a TREO trip to San Diego, in which he admits he got drunk, and said some things he shouldn't have.

Because of the findings, Cunningham, as well as the entire council, will have to undergo sexual harassment training.

Cunningham reached out to 9OYS with the following statement this afternoon:

"The report documents what I have already acknowledged; I made inappropriate comments that occurred at a bar after-hours. The incident was not during any normal part of the trip's program. The incident did not involve physical contact or unwanted sexual advances."

Fellow councilmember Regina Romero responded to the findings today with the following statement.

"Per the report, Councilmember Cunningham acknowledged the potential
future impact on his working relationship with these particular women
due to their position within the organization.  The report also
recognizes that the women involved had experienced similar comments
directed at them from the Councilmember on prior occasions.

Sexual harassment should never be tolerated.  Council Member
Cunningham’s behavior cannot and should not be excused or diminished
because he was under the influence of alcohol.  His actions hurt the
individuals involved, they hurt women, and they hurt the City of
Tucson."

Cunningham also added that he would like to thank all the family members and friends in the community who have recently offered their love and support.