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By Douglas Sciorra

Hornell judge can be a lawyer in her courtroom, but not a judge without a vaccine; She’s suing the state court system

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By JOHN ANDERSON

Hornell City Court Judge Jennifer Donlon is unvaccinated.

She has applications showing religious and medical exceptions from a COVID-19 shot.

As a result, she is allowed in her own courtroom, as a lawyer.

She can’t enter in her robe as a judge.

As a result, Donlon filed a lawsuit in Manhattan on Thursday against the New York Unified Court System and the New York Office of Court Administration because “Paradoxically” the state allows her in the courtroom as a lawyer but not as a judge.

New York Post reporter Priscilla DeGregory was able to get a copy of the lawsuit, which said the state’s vaccine policy is “purely arbitrary and capricious.” The suit also says, “Ms. Donlon begins these proceedings on an uneven playing field. This Court’s task is not an easy one … she is an outcast.”

Donlon, who has been a judge in Hornell since 2017, was told to have a COVID-19 vaccine by Sept. 27, 2021 along with other judges and court employees. Lawyers were not part of this ruling.

DeGregory also said in her story, “Donlon asks whichever judge is assigned to the case to ‘treat her as Your Honor would expect to be treated if the roles were reversed,’ the court papers say.

The New York Post said a court spokesman said they haven’t been served and would not comment.

Donlon is only allowed to hear cases remote at the time.

According to her website, donlonlawoffice.com, the attorney office says, “Led by Attorney Jennifer Donlon, and located in the heart of Hornell, NY, our legal team includes highly experienced staff members with strong legal backgrounds. We work together to provide the highest quality of client care and services. The team focuses on obtaining ideal outcomes for each client’s individual needs.”

The site continues, “A native of Hornell, Attorney Jennifer Donlon has deep roots in the Steuben County community. Her legal career spans more than 20 years and encompasses many areas of law. A member of several local and regional bar associations, she also serves on the attorney for children panel and the juvenile justice panel.”

About Donlon

Jennifer Donlon

Attorney Jennifer Donlon was the first and only female solo practitioner in Hornell, NY when she began her practice in 2000. She brought a tenacity and female perspective to matrimonial and family law issues. Jennifer was born and raised in Hornell, New York and continues to be active in the community in which she works and lives. Jennifer attended Alfred State College and graduated with her Associates Degree in 1991 and also received the Phi Beta Award in Psychology. Her biography was published in National Dean’s List in 1991. She continued her educational studies at SUNY Binghamton and received her Bachelor’s of Arts with a double major in English Literature and Philosophy in 1995. With a love for writing and higher education, she taught English Composition as an adjunct professor at Alfred State College in 1996. With her continued love for writing coupled with a passion for justice, she continued her higher education at Albany Law School and graduated in 1999 with her Juris Doctorate Degree. Following graduation from law school, she was admitted to the New York State Bar in early 2000 and has been in private practice in her hometown ever since. Her practice has continued to serve the local community in which she has worked and lived her entire life. Jennifer has a strong passion for continuing to help those in need move past legal issues and prepare for the future.

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