The wireless industry is trying to block San Francisco’s novel cellphone “right to know” law on grounds it forces, not hinders, speech. The law would require retailers of cellphones to post signs and distribute information advising consumers of their potential health effects.
The suit is part of a new wave of litigation playing out in federal courts around the country in which corporations are using the compelled-speech doctrine to fight back as cities increasingly turn to health and safety disclosure laws, as opposed to piecemeal enforcement actions. The challenges come to disclosure laws aimed at anti-abortion pregnancy clinics, stores selling cigarettes and fast-food chains.
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