ACLU Joins Prescription Drug Privacy Row With DEA

Sean McLernon reports:

The American Civil Liberties Union said Wednesday that it has secured approval to intervene in a federal court battle in Oregon over access to prescription drug records in order to represent state residents who claim the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency is violating their constitutional privacy rights.

U.S. District Judge Ancer L. Haggerty granted the ACLU’s motion on March 31, rejecting the DEA’s argument that the state and federal governments already involved in the litigation will be able to represent the interests of prescription drug users.

Good call by the judge. The federal government was claiming that there’s no blanket constitutional right to privacy in prescription records. They may be right, but that certainly calls into question their position that the federal government would represent individuals’ privacy interests in the case.


The case is Oregon Prescription Drug Monitoring Program v. U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, case number 3:12-cv-02023, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Oregon. Some of the filings in this case can be found on ACLU’s site. The order granting ACLU’s motion to intervene can be found here.

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