WASHINGTON — Today, U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) released the following statement calling on his colleagues to quickly vote and pass the Judicial Redress Act. Murphy’s request comes just two days after the United States and the European Union agreed to a data protection Umbrella Agreement that would boost transatlantic relations and U.S. national security, but is dependent on Congressional passage of the Judicial Redress Act. 

“As we face unprecedented challenges around the world today, robust cooperation between the United States and the European Union is crucial in our shared fight against crime and terrorism. The agreed upon Umbrella Agreement announced this week is an important step toward improving this partnership and ensuring our transatlantic relationships remain strong—but it won’t go into effect without adequate privacy protections in place,” said Murphy. “That’s why we must pass the Judicial Redress Act, which I introduced earlier this year with Senator Hatch. Our bill simply provides the same type of limited privacy protections to our European allies that U.S. citizens already enjoy in European courts, and is a necessary step in cementing the transatlantic law enforcement cooperation that keeps Americans safe. 

“I strongly urge leaders in the House and Senate to quickly bring the Judicial Redress Act to the floor. Our security cooperation with Europe is too important to be delayed,” Murphy added.

Under current law, only U.S. citizens can seek redress in U.S. courts when their privacy rights are violated. In contrast, many European allies already provide that right to U.S. citizens in their courts of law. The Judicial Redress Act simply establishes reciprocity with our closest friends, and ensures that they continue to share information crucial to our law enforcement cooperation. The bill will enhance transatlantic relations and security and promote a mutually beneficial environment for U.S. and European businesses.

The Judicial Redress Act extends core benefits of the Privacy Act to select U.S. allies with regard to information shared with the U.S. for law enforcement purposes, including judicial redress for denials of access to and correction of records and remedies for intentional or willful disclosure of information.

The Judicial Redress Act was introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Congressmen Jim Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) and John Conyers (D-Mich.) and is supported by The White House, U.S. Department of Justice, and U.S. federal law enforcement agencies. The legislation has been endorsed by numerous organizations and associations, including The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Application Developers Alliance, BSA, The Software Alliance Computer & Communications Industry Association, Information Technology Industry Council, Internet Association, Software & Information Industry Association, the Trans Atlantic Business Council, IBM, Facebook, Foursquare, Google, Intuit, Microsoft, and Yahoo.