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Hirono Leads Reintroduction of My Body, My Data Act to Protect Reproductive and Sexual Health Data

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-HI) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) led 11 of their Senate colleagues in reintroducing the My Body, My Data Act, legislation to create a new national standard to protect reproductive and sexual health data by minimizing the information collected and retained, and preventing that information from being disclosed or misused. Companion legislation was introduced in the House by Representative Sara Jacobs (D-CA).

“Along with restricting the reproductive rights of people across the country, the Supreme Court’s disastrous Dobbs decision opened individuals up to the risk of surveillance and prosecution for providing or seeking reproductive care,” said Senator Hirono. “Everyone should be able to trust that their personal data is safe and secure. This legislation will help protect people’s privacy and ensure their personal health data can’t be used against them. I will continue to do everything in my power to protect the right of all individuals to make decisions about their bodies and their futures.”

Since the Supreme Court overturned the constitutional right to an abortion, 19 states have total or near total abortion bans—putting people who are getting, seeking, or facilitating reproductive health care at risk that their digital footprints will be weaponized against them.

Currently, few protections exist to prevent personal reproductive health data, or information about people seeking reproductive health services, from being collected, retained, or disclosed to third parties. The My Body, My Data Act would address this problem by:

  • Limiting the personal reproductive and sexual health data that can be collected, retained, used, or disclosed to only what is needed to deliver a product or service;
  • Protecting personal data collected by entities not currently covered under HIPAA, including data collected by apps, cell phones, and search engines;
  • Requiring regulated entities to develop and share a privacy policy outlining how they collect, retain, use, and disclose personal reproductive health information;
  • Creating a private right of action to allow individuals to hold regulated entities accountable for violations;
  • Providing additional consumer protections, including the right to access, correct, or delete personal data;
  • Including a non-preemption clause that allows states to provide further protection for reproductive and sexual health privacy.

In addition to Senators Hirono and Wyden, the legislation was also cosponsored by Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Amy Klobuchar (D-NY), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), and Tina Smith (D-MN). In addition to Representative Jacobs, 91 representatives co-sponsored this legislation in the House.

The bill was also endorsed by Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA), NARAL Pro-Choice America, Physicians for Reproductive Health (PRH), National Partnership for Women & Families, National Women’s Law Center (NWLC), Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT), Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC), National Abortion Federation, Catholics for Choice, National Council for Jewish Women, Feminist Majority, Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity (URGE), and Indivisible.

The full text of the bill is available here.

A long-time champion for abortion access, Senator Hirono is committed to protecting the fundamental right to abortion care for all. Earlier this year, Senator Hirono introduced legislation to expand protections for Americans’ personal health data privacy following reports that have shown social media companies are collecting and data brokers are selling location data that could be used to identify individuals seeking reproductive health care services. She also led 30 of her colleagues in pushing to prevent local and state law enforcement from using federal assistance to surveil or investigate individuals receiving or providing abortion care. Senator Hirono also urged the Biden administration to take new steps to protect reproductive freedom amidst divided control of Congress and increasing efforts to restrict access to abortion.