Chevron U. S. A. Inc. v. Echazabal, 536 U.S. 73, 2 (2002)

Page:   Index   Previous  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15  Next




of discretion in setting the limits of permissible qualification standards. And the expansive "may include" phrase points directly away from the sort of exclusive specifications that Echazabal claims. Strike two is the failure to identify any series of terms or things that should be understood to go hand in hand, which are abridged in circumstances supporting a sensible inference that the term left out must have been meant to be excluded. Echazabal claims that Congress's adoption only of the threat-to-others exception in the ADA was a deliberate omission of the threat-to-self exception included in the EEOC's regulation implementing the precursor Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which has language identical to that in the ADA. But this is not an unequivocal implication of congressional intent. Because the EEOC was not the only agency interpreting the Rehabilitation Act, its regulation did not establish a clear, standard pairing of threats to self and others. And, it is likely that Congress used such language in the ADA knowing what the EEOC had made of that language under the earlier statute. The third strike is simply that there is no apparent stopping point to the argument that, by specifying a threat-to-others defense, Congress intended a negative implication about those whose safety could be considered. For example, Congress could not have meant that an employer could not defend a refusal to hire when a worker's disability would threaten others outside the workplace. Pp. 79-84.

(c) Since Congress has not spoken exhaustively on threats to a work-er's own health, the regulation can claim adherence under the rule in Chevron U. S. A. Inc. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc., 467 U. S. 837, 843, so long as it makes sense of the statutory defense for qualification standards that are "job-related and consistent with business necessity." Chevron's reasons for claiming that the regulation is reasonable include, inter alia, that it allows Chevron to avoid the risk of violating the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (OSHA). Whether an employer would be liable under OSHA for hiring an individual who consents to a job's particular dangers is an open question, but the employer would be courting trouble under OSHA. The EEOC's resolution exemplifies the substantive choices that agencies are expected to make when Congress leaves the intersection of competing objectives both imprecisely marked and subject to administrative leeway. Nor can the EEOC's resolution be called unreasonable as allowing the kind of workplace paternalism the ADA was meant to outlaw. The ADA was trying to get at refusals to give an even break to classes of disabled people, while claiming to act for their own good in reliance on untested and pretextual stereotypes. This sort of sham protection is just what the regulation disallows, by demanding a particularized enquiry into the harms an employee would probably face. Finally, that

Page:   Index   Previous  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15  Next

Last modified: October 4, 2007