Skip to Content

Government Surveillance, Privacy & Data, Reproductive Rights

Blog Series: Cracking Down on Federal Aid for Reproductive Health Surveillance

The Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization has dramatically upended privacy rights in America, and raised the specter of broad surveillance and investigation of individuals’ reproductive health care choices. One important aspect of this new risk of government monitoring is how federal government aid resources could be used for abortion surveillance. 

The Biden Administration has expressed a strong commitment to protecting access to reproductive health care, but a host of federal law enforcement systems and programs are designed to provide surveillance and investigative support to state and local law enforcement, with no restrictions on that support being co-opted to monitor and prosecute reproductive health decisions. 

This series of blog posts examines several different types of federal surveillance and investigative aid that are especially vulnerable to being used in such a manner, the danger those uses pose, and steps the federal government can take to prevent it. In December 2022, CDT led a group of over 50 civil and human rights, civil liberties, and reproductive health, rights, and justice organizations in calling on the Administration to take action on this issue.