Labor & Employment

Suspended without pay, judge asks top state court to treat her alcoholism as a disability

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One of three Broward County judges charged with driving under the influence in a little more than six months has asked the Florida Supreme Court to reconsider its decision to suspend her without pay.

Judge Gisele Pollack, 56, is asking that her alcoholism be treated as a disability and seeking a suspension with pay so that she can be treated, the Sun Sentinel reports.

She is represented by attorney David Bogenschutz, who filed a petition late Wednesday asking the judicial system to make reasonable accommodations for Pollack under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

“A suspension without pay will work an onerous hardship and be emotionally debilitating as she struggles to overcome this disability and disease,” said Bogenschutz in the petition. “If, in fact, Judge Pollack had been suffering from cancer or another disability that required her to be out of office in treatment or therapy, such a restriction would not have been appropriate.”

Prior to her mother’s recent death, Pollack had a nearly 20-year period of sobriety, another lawyer representing the judge told the newspaper earlier.

Today’s newspaper article doesn’t include any comment from court officials concerning the petition.

Related coverage: “Judge hits sheriff’s vehicle in courthouse lot, is county’s 2nd jurist charged with DUI in a month”

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