Welfare Drug Testing in 23 States

22 States Now Examining Welfare Drug Testing After Following Florida’s Lead

Drug testing for welfare recipients has been a hotly contested issue over the last several years and now 22 states including Wyoming, Illinois, Maryland and Colorado have joined Florida is furthering examining the possibility of a drug testing program.

If passed the new laws would required that welfare applicants first provide a clean drug test in order to receive food stamps, welfare and any other forms of government aid such as housing assistance available on a state-by-state basis.

According to USA Today ohio and Tennessee are even considering restricting or eliminating eligibility for those convicted of drug felonies.

For anyone receiving housing assistance another law would require that they go through substance abuse training.

Yet another proposal would mandate substance abuse training for anyone receiving housing assistance.

In explaining why states are beginning to examine such a heated topic one Colorado legislator notes:

“If you have enough money to be able to buy drugs, then you don’t need the public assistance.”

In the meantime the Florida law has only caught a handful of offenders and has drawn a legal challenge from the ACLU who says the requirement unfairly stigmatizes welfare recipients.

In the meantime the states currently examining welfare laws regarding drug testing have not come up with a general consensus over the law and which rules they will actually choose to implement if any at all.

As someone who has had to take drug tests to receive a job and ultimately money from an actual employer in the past I don’t see what the difference is between welfare drug testing and a paying job’s requirement for testing before employement.

Do you think federal and state organizations should be able to require drug testing?

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