A black barrister who was overlooked for promotion was told by her boss "there are blue eyed boys and blue eyed girls, and you're not a blue eyed girl", a tribunal heard last week. Marlene Morgan, 36, claimed that many ethnic minority lawyers working for the Inland Revenue's solicitor's office were regarded as substandard. Morgan, who has worked at the Revenue office for nine years, accused bosses of being "more inclined" to promote white lawyers. The barrister said that she was treated unfairly from the start of her career with the Revenue when, unlike white contemporaries, she was not promoted until five months after completing her probation. She said that out of 21 white lawyers only one took longer than 12 months to be promoted, compared with eight or nine black lawyers who failed to achieve regrading. Her complaints of racial discrimination came after she was again overlooked for promotion for the post of senior legal officer. She told the tribunal candidates were not interviewed and the post was not advertised. She said: "In my view the procedure is secretive and lacks transparency. The promotion criteria are not clear." She said there was no appeal procedure for staff who felt they had been harshly treated. She also told the tribunal she was denied funding to obtain her masters in taxation law, while a white colleague was granted the money.