The Effects of Employment Protection for Obese People

23 Pages Posted: 16 Jun 2006

See all articles by Christopher S. Carpenter

Christopher S. Carpenter

Vanderbilt University; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)


This paper uses a 1993 court case, Cook v. Rhode Island, in conjunction with the implementation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to estimate the impact of employment protection on the labor market outcomes of obese people. In Cook, a federal appeals court ruled for the first time that obesity can be covered under the ADA. Using data from 1988 to 1999, I estimate that Cook increased employment for obese women and men relative to those whose weight was in the recommended range on the order of four and two percentage points, respectively. The results provide new evidence that obesity has important labor market implications.

Suggested Citation

Carpenter, Christopher S., The Effects of Employment Protection for Obese People. Industrial Relations: A Journal of Economy and Society, Vol. 45, No. 3, pp. 393-415, July 2006, Available at SSRN: or

Christopher S. Carpenter (Contact Author)

Vanderbilt University ( email )

Box 1819 Station B
Nashville, TN 37235
United States

HOME PAGE: http://

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics