The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on June 4 denied a petition to reconsider a 2008 decision to grant a preliminary injunction protecting Jet Propulsion Laboratory scientists and engineers from being required to submit to a Bush administration Homeland Security background check established five years ago.
The case was filed in 2007 by 28 JPL employees after they were told they would have to submit to an extensive background check that could include interviews with friends, neighbors and co-workers or anyone the agency deemed important.
The checks could also include questions regarding an individual’s health history and sexual orientation.
“We feel pretty good,” said Robert Nelson, one of the JPL employees who filed the lawsuit. “I first heard about the [decision] a little before noon [on June 4]. I checked the Court of Appeals website to see if the report was real.”