Hanford’s Community Development Director Darlene Mata’s Lawyer Reveals Councilmember’s Brieno’s Discriminatory Remarks

A press release from the office of Rachele Berglund, Esq. of HERR PEDERSEN & BERGLUND LLP

An investigation conducted at the behest of the City of Hanford City Attorney’s office concluded former Councilmember Art Brieno told others he “did not trust a woman to hold the job of Community Development Director, that a man was better suited for that job, and that he did not know how a woman got that job over a man.” The investigation also concluded Mr. Brieno disclosed an employee’s confidential personnel and medical information to others, and publicly ridiculed an employee’s performance.

Although this office has not previously disclosed its involvement in the matter, and attempted to protect its client’s privacy interests, this statement is being provided to help quell misinformation. Darlene Mata, whom this office represents, has acted courageously in bringing forward her concerns, despite knowing the likelihood of public ridicule and misdirected scrutiny based on false information.

Contrary to statements made by the media and other public speculation, these issues do not stem from a “dispute over regulating a popular auto repair business in Hanford.” These are, in fact, very serious matters that relate to violation of state and federal anti-harassment, discrimination and privacy laws, City policy and the Hanford City Council Handbook. To suggest otherwise diminishes the unlawful and inappropriate conduct of Mr. Brieno. To suggest otherwise fosters bias against women and is a disservice to gender equality.

Efforts are underway to bring a full and complete resolution to these matters.

7 thoughts on “Hanford’s Community Development Director Darlene Mata’s Lawyer Reveals Councilmember’s Brieno’s Discriminatory Remarks

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  1. An investigation? So they asked people what they said all all came together to lie? Is he recorded saying these statements. Very specific and detailed statement to remember word for word. Very suspicious. And for Mata attorney to totally dismiss Mata illegally hiring a personal attorney to investigate city council vote is wrong. The city still needs to address Mata action. The city of Hanford has a paid attorney and it violated city conduct for a city employee to hire an attorney to investigate city council vote. FACT

    • Why are you stuck on that there was an investigation regarding the vote when even before this release it was stated it was regarding comments made? The vote is clearly irrelevant. If an investigation was conducted for the city, it was likely a third unbiased party who conducted it who would have also interviewed the former councilman as well…which is likely why there are quotations to show direct comments from him. When one needs to take litigation against their employer, do they hire their employer’s attorney? No! They hire their own. Either way, it will be made public knowledge eventually because it involves public employees, so I’m sure we’ll all find out for sure when the findings are released.

      • A CITY COUNCIL MEMBER IS NOT AN ATTORNEY! SEEMS LIKE VALLEY VOICE NEEDS TO FIX ITS REPORTING INSTEAD PUBLISH FALSE INFORMATION.

      • MATAS ACTIONS STILL NEED TO BE INVESTIGATED. THIS CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS COMMENTS DON’T EXCUSE MATAS ACTION

  2. Both side of this issue need To resolve reasonably , peaceful and with dignity. To not discredit each other to prove a point, although I do respect the notion of a woman for any position (If the shoes fit buy them) I always say. Any Harassment is not permissible in any way Or means, if we as a society are ever going to get along charges need To be made in a positive manner, remember there’s still a lot of people that still need to be educated.
    1Corinthians 13:4-8 NIV

  3. Is this the same City of Hanford department head that was acting as a free-lance consultant at the same time as working full-time for the City?! Actively assisting clients in other jurisdictions than Hanford while on City time? How did THAT contract ever get approved? Makes one wonder.

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