A former Burbank city employee was subjected to workplace harassment
and overlooked for job opportunities because of her age and gender,
her attorney said Friday in his opening statements of the woman’s
trial against the city.
Deborah McMurray, a 57-year-old revenue clerk, alleges that she
was discriminated against and subjected to a hostile work environment
when she complained, her attorney Brad Gage said. She worked for the
city’s Park, Recreation and Community Services Department.
She sued the city in March 2001.
“The evidence shows that after McMurray complained both formally
and informally, she was retaliated against,” Gage said.
He added that she was told not to apply for the budget director
position, was stripped of job duties, removed from committees,
ignored and was told only to communicate with other co-workers
But Irma Rodriguez Moisa, one of the attorneys representing the
city, said McMurray never applied for the position. Moisa said that
the plaintiff had a personality disorder that “would turn a simple
conversation or compliment into an insult or [instance of]
“This case is about a individual who refused to recognize that she
didn’t have the skills to do the job and instead the city hired the
best qualified applicant,” she said.
When questioned on the stand by Gage, City Manager Mary Alvord
said McMurray was unable to get along with co-workers.
Officials expect the trial to last as long as 17 days.
Earlier this year, Gage helped three female Glendale Police
officers win a $3.5-million jury award for a sexual harassment
lawsuit against that city, which Moisa represented.