The House of Representatives today approved the Judicial Redress Act of 2015 (H.R. 1428) by voice vote. Introduced by Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security, and Investigations Chairman Jim Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) and House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member John Conyers (D-Mich.), the Judicial Redress Act of 2015 would strengthen partnerships with our allies and ensure continued law enforcement cooperation between the United States and Europe by giving covered foreign citizens the ability to seek judicial redress in U.S. courts to ensure that their privacy is protected.
The bipartisan legislation would extend certain privacy protection rights to citizens of European countries, as well as other allied nations, if the federal government willfully discloses information in violation of the Privacy Act. Under the Judicial Redress Act, citizens of designated countries would be extended the core benefits of the Privacy Act, which already applies to Americans, with regard to information shared with U.S. law enforcement authorities, including the ability to bring a lawsuit for the intentional or willful disclosure of personal information. Many countries already extend such protections to U.S. citizens.
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Goodlatte (R-Va.), Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security, and Investigations Chairman Jim Sensenbrenner, and House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member John Conyers issued the following statement on the passage of the bill:
“Today’s bipartisan passage of the Judicial Redress Act will help restore our allies’ faith in U.S. data privacy protections and helping facilitate agreements, such as the Data Protection and Privacy Agreement, that strengthen our trans-Atlantic partnerships with Europe. This bill benefits not only our own law enforcement, but is a sign of good faith to our partners abroad. We are pleased with the resounding bipartisan support that has been shown for this measure by our colleagues, and urge the Senate to take up this measure as quickly as possible.”
SOURCE: House Judiciary Committee
There are two problems: (1) Protections under the Privacy Act even for U.S. citizens have been eroded by the Supreme Court in Cooper, and (2) most non-U.S. citizens would find it difficult to see our government in the U.S.
So what does this bill really do for non-citizens? Answer: not much.