Judicial Advocacy Initiative


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.  ACS CAN engages most frequently in cases affecting access to healthcare and tobacco control.  JAI takes the fight against cancer to the courts, protecting the interests of the cancer community.  

Our Supporters

The JAI receives pro bono assistance from ten law firms:  Anderson & Kreiger, Baker Donelson, Democracy Forward, Dentons, Eversheds Sutherland, K&L Gates, Hogan Lovells, Kilpatrick Townsend, Morrison & Foerster,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.

Commemorating a Decade of Judicial Advocacy

In September 2018 we celebrated the 10th anniversary of the Judicial Advocacy Initiative (JAI). Read the full blog post to learn more.


Access to Care

June 1, 2023

In September of 2022, US District Court Judge Reed O’Connor struck down the process mandated in the Affordable Care Act that requires private insurers to cover preventive services recommended by the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) without copay as constitutionally flawed in the case of Braidwood Management v. Becerra.

May 8, 2023

A U.S. District Court decision out of Texas in the case of Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine v Food and Drug Administration (FDA) stayed the agency’s approval of the drug mifepristone, which is used in many medical abortions.

September 27, 2022

The civil rights law 42 US Code Section 1983 (also known as “Section 1983”) allows individuals to sue the federal, state or local government or affiliates if those entities have deprived the individual of their rights.

Tobacco Litigation

January 3, 2023

The citizens of California voted to ban the sale of most flavored tobacco products in a ballot initiative on November 9, 2022.  The tobacco industry attempted to get an emergency stay of the law by petitioning the US Supreme Court in the case of RJ Reynolds v. Bonta.

January 3, 2023

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.

February 24, 2022

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been issuing marketing denial orders  (MDOs) for certain flavored e-cigarette products in accordance with Family Smoking and Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (TCA).

Healthy Eating and Active Living

April 16, 2018

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.

October 31, 2017

San Francisco passed an ordinance requiring advertisers of sugar-sweetened beverages to place a warning on specific types of advertisements stating that the product "contributes" to obesity, diabetes, and tooth decay.

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.