USAID v. AOSI Defending Free Speech for Recipients of Government Funds



August: Government files petition for writ of certiorari with the Supreme Court.

May: Second Circuit denies government’s request for rehearing en banc.

March:  Government petitions for rehearing en banc.


December: Second Circuit affirms the permanent injunction.

May: Second Circuit hears the government’s appeal


July: Second Circuit issues an order staying the permanent injunction as to foreign affiliates.

June: District court denies reconsideration and lifts stay of the 2015 order.

January: After nearly two years of appeals, a series of stays, and efforts to reach a settlement, the government ends negotiations and moves for reconsideration or clarification of the permanent injunction.


January: District court grants a permanent injunction, ordering the government to revise its communications and prohibiting the government from applying the Policy Requirement to U.S. NGOs or their foreign affiliates.


September: After more than a year of issuing official communications regarding government funding that contained the Policy Requirement with no exemption for plaintiffs or their affiliates, the government issues nonbinding interim guidance stating that U.S. NGOs are not required to have a policy opposing prostitution, but announcing that the government will apply the Policy Requirement to all foreign NGOs, including plaintiffs’ affiliates.


June: Supreme Court holds that the Policy Requirement “violates the First Amendment and cannot be sustained” because it “compels as a condition of federal funding the affirmation of a belief that by its nature cannot be confined within the scope of the Government program” or cabined to affiliates that are “clearly identified” with plaintiffs. Agency for Int’l Dev. v. All. for Open Soc’y Int’l, Inc., 570 U.S. 205, 219, 221 (2013).

April: Oral arguments before the Supreme Court.

January: Supreme Court agrees to hear the case.


July: Government appeals decision to Supreme Court.

February: Second Circuit denies request for rehearing en banc.


September: Government requests rehearing en banc.

July: Second Circuit issues decision affirming preliminary injunction.


December: Oral argument is held at Second Circuit.

May: Government files revised brief at Second Circuit.

April: Government issues final amended regulation and guidelines.

January: Government reinstates appeal at Second Circuit.


November: Government again invites public comment on proposed guidelines.

July: Parties agree to withdrawal of government’s appeal, and its reinstatement by January 8, 2010.

June: Government notifies plaintiffs that it wants to issue a new set of revised regulations and withdraw its appeal in the interim.


December: HHS and USAID issue revised regulations related to Policy Requirement.

October: Government again appeals to Second Circuit.

August: District court extends preliminary injunction, barring enforcement of the pledge requirement, to Global Health Council, InterAction, and their members.

April: Government invites public comment on guidelines.

February: Global Health Council and InterAction join case.


November: Second Circuit remands case to district court to consider impact of guidelines and keeps preliminary injunction in place.

August: Second Circuit orders letter briefing on the impact of guidelines on the appeal.

July: HHS and USAID each issue first set of regulations related to Policy Requirement.

June: United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit Court hears argument on the appeal. At the argument, Government announces that it will issue guidelines clarifying Policy Requirement.


August: Government appeals the ruling.

June: District court issues preliminary injunction barring enforcement of the Policy Requirement against AOSI and Pathfinder International.

May: District court rules Policy Requirement likely violates First Amendment rights.


December: Pathfinder International joins case.

September: Alliance for Open Society International files challenge to the Policy Requirement.

June: The Government starts enforcing the Policy Requirement against U.S. organizations. It had previously refrained from doing so based on an opinion by the Department of Justice’s Office of Legal Counsel that application to U.S.-based organizations would be unconstitutional.


May: President Bush signs the United States Leadership Against HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria Act.