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Child getting his mouth swabbed by woman wearing red scrubs

California's kids now have common-sense protections against unwarranted DNA collection. Gov. Jerry Brown this week signed A.B. 1584, a new law requiring law enforcement to get either judicial approval or permission from both the minor and a parent, legal guardian, or attorney before collecting a DNA sample from the minor.

EFF has supported the bill, introduced earlier this year by Assembly member Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher, from the beginning. DNA can reveal an extraordinary amount of private information about a person, from familial relationships to medical history to predisposition for disease. Children should not be exposed to this kind of privacy invasion without strict guidelines and the advice and consent of a parent, legal guardian, or attorney. Kids need to have an adult present who represents their interests and can help them understand both their rights and the lifelong implications of handing one’s sensitive genetic material over to law enforcement.

This law will make sure that happens.

Thanks to A.B. 1584, police will now have to obtain a court order, search warrant, or the consent of both the minor... see more