This Note will address whether the Ninth Circuit should have upheld the "direct threat to self" defense in Echazabal v. Chevron. First, the Note will introduce the "direct threat to self" debate in the context of the ADA's language, the EEOC-outlined regulatory provisions, and the case law surrounding the direct threat question. Specifically, the Note will address (1) the relationship between the ADA and the EEOC, (2) the compatiblity of the ADA with the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and (3) the case law applying the EEOC regulations, the ADA provisions, and the Rehabilitation Act provisions. Next, the Note will discuss the factual context of Echazabal, the Ninth Circuit's rationale supporting its holding that the "direct threat to self" defense is invalid, and the dissent's argument that such defense should be recognized. Finally, the Note will discuss the court's flawed reasoning, arguing that the "direct threat to self" defense is valid and should have been applied in Echazabal.
Sheehan Sullivan, Employers Beware: The Ninth Circuit's Rejection of the "Direct Threat to Self" Disability Discrimination Defense in Echazabal v. Chevron, 25 SEATTLE U. L. REV. 517 (2001).