The American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin believes that the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (a.k.a. drones) for domestic purposes poses a serious threat to the privacy of all Americans. We support bipartisan efforts at the state and federal levels to create sensible and constitutional rules for drone use.
In Wisconsin, the ACLU has been investigating drone use for nearly two years. For example, we have concerns about the scope of activity at the Wisconsin Air National Guard drone facility at Volk Field at Camp Douglas.
On Wednesday, May 29, 2013 ACLU of Wisconsin Executive Director Chris Ahmuty testified in support of 2013 Assembly Bill 203, which restricts the use of drones.
Hear Ahmuty discuss the issue on WUWM radio.
At the federal level Wisconsin Congressman James Sensenbrenner held a hearing on May 17, 2013 on the domestic use of unmanned aerial systems. ACLU Legislative Counsel, Christopher Calabrese testified. See his testimony here.
The ACLU believes that there are legitimate uses for drones in combination with other new technologies. However, the technology is galloping way ahead of the law in this area. Legislatures and the Congress should act now to make sure that our American values control the technology, and not the other way around.