Judicial Advocacy Initiative

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Taking the Cancer Fight to the Courts

This initiative identifies lawsuits and regulatory actions that impact the fight against cancer and files "friend of the court" briefs or comments to advocate on behalf of cancer patients and survivors, and all people touched by this terrible disease.  The work accomplished by the Judicial Advocacy Initiative is made possible by law firms who are recruited by ACS CAN and who donate services to support its mission.

Initiative Priorities

Court decisions can have a major impact on the fight against cancer. Issues range from the employment rights of cancer patients to the tobacco industry's efforts to circumvent federal law. The JAI Initiative takes the fight against cancer to the courts, protecting the interests of the cancer community. 


Our Supporters

The JAI receives pro bono assistance from seven law firms:  Anderson & Kreiger, Dentons, K&L Gates, Kilpatrick Townsend, Posinelli, WilmerHale, and Zuckerman Spaeder. Their donated services leverage a multi-sector partnership for the common good. They provide specialized expertise in a wide range of areas, from writing comments to regulatory agencies that govern medical research to tobacco control litigation. Their commitment to JAI indicates that respected professionals in the legal establishment believe the program can make a difference.

Healthy Eating and Active Living

March 13, 2017

Sugary drinks contribute to obesity, which is clearly associated with an increased risk of cancer development and recurrence, as well as decreased risk of survival, for many cancers. The city of Philadelphia enacted a tax on soda that was challenged in court.

Access to Care

March 25, 2015

ACS and ACS CAN joined with the American Diabetes Association and American Heart Association to file amicus briefs in lawsuits challenging the availability of tax credits to people who buy a health plan in the federal marketplace.

October 31, 2014

When the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was signed into law, numerous lawsuits were filed to invalidate it. After thorough consideration, ACS and ACS CAN decided to join with the American Diabetes Association and the American Heart Association in filing an amicus brief in federal appelate courts and at the Supreme Court of the United States to support the patient protection provisions of ACA.

October 25, 2013

ACS CAN believes that cancer patients should have the ability to work with their treating physician to determine appropriate care. Health insurance to cover these treatments should be adequate, available, affordable, and administratively simple.

Tobacco Litigation

June 28, 2017

After the massive Master Settlement Agreement (MSA) between states and the tobacco industry regarding fraud associated with the sale and marketing of cigarettes, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) decided to file a similar lawsuit against the tobacco industry.

May 18, 2017

The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (TCA) – signed into law by President Obama in 2009 - granted the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authority to regulate the manufacture, marketing, and sale of tobacco products. Prior to the law, tobacco products were largely unregulated outside of required warning labels and limited restrictions on advertising.

March 27, 2017

ACS CAN and other tobacco control groups urged the US Attorney General to ensure that attorneys who worked for the tobacco industry and have now moved to the Department of Justice observe conflict of interest standards and recuse those lawyers from government litigation in related cases.

Quality of Life

April 10, 2013

Cancer patients and survivors deserve a workplace free from discrimination. To that end, ACS CAN responded to an EEOC request for comments on its regulations implementing the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Amendments of 2008.

Medical Research

May 24, 2013

The Office of Human Research Protections at the Department of Health and Human Services spent years considering changes to the Common Rule, which governs the conduct of medical research funded by 15 different federal agencies.