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States Adding Drug Test as Hurdle for Welfare
New York Times ^ | October 10, 2011 | A. G. SULZBERGER

Posted on 10/11/2011 6:26:53 AM PDT by reaganaut1

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — As more Americans turn to government programs for refuge from a merciless economy, a growing number are encountering a new price of admission to the social safety net: a urine sample.

Policy makers in three dozen states this year proposed drug testing for people receiving benefits like welfare, unemployment assistance, job training, food stamps and public housing. Such laws, which proponents say ensure that tax dollars are not being misused and critics say reinforce stereotypes about the poor, have passed in states including Arizona, Indiana and Missouri.

In Florida, people receiving cash assistance through welfare have had to pay for their own drug tests since July, and enrollment has shrunk to its lowest levels since the start of the recession.

The law, the most far-reaching in the nation, provoked a lawsuit last month from the American Civil Liberties Union, arguing that the requirement represents an unreasonable search and seizure.

The flood of proposals across the country, enabled by the strength of Republicans in many statehouses and driven by a desire to cut government spending, recall the politics of the ’80s and ’90s, when higher rates of drug abuse and references to “welfare queens” led to policies aimed at ensuring that public benefits were not spent to support addiction.

Supporters of the policies note that public assistance is meant to be transitional and that drug tests are increasingly common requirements for getting jobs.

“Working people today work very hard to make ends meet, and it just doesn’t seem fair to them that their tax dollars go to support illegal things,” said Ellen Brandom, a Republican state representative in Missouri.

The last three years, she sponsored legislation requiring testing of welfare recipients, and her bill was signed by Gov. Jay Nixon, a Democrat, in July.

(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society
KEYWORDS: addiction; dependency; drugtesting; welfare

1 posted on 10/11/2011 6:26:56 AM PDT by reaganaut1
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To: reaganaut1

Add a gambling test. My daughter said she watched a dude use his welfare card to buy $40 worth of lottery tickets.


2 posted on 10/11/2011 6:29:48 AM PDT by Sacajaweau
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To: reaganaut1

A “hurdle”?

Really?

If these people are on welfare, that means they have limited income, and drugs cost money. That money has to come from somewhere, and welfare is taxpayer money.

I see no problem, if you’re taking our money, for us to make sure you’re not spending it on drugs (or booze, cigs, etc).


3 posted on 10/11/2011 6:30:11 AM PDT by MrB (The difference between a Humanist and a Satanist - the latter knows whom he's working for)
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To: reaganaut1

“In Florida, people receiving cash assistance through welfare have had to pay for their own drug tests since July, and enrollment has shrunk to its lowest levels since the start of the recession.”

Rick Scott seems to be doing an outstanding job down there.


4 posted on 10/11/2011 6:31:24 AM PDT by Christian Engineer Mass (25ish Cambridge MA grad student. Many conservative Christians my age out there? __ Click my name)
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To: reaganaut1

The article notes that FL charges for a drug test to get welfare but failed to point out that that fee is refunded if the urine sample comes back ‘clean’.


5 posted on 10/11/2011 6:35:28 AM PDT by JPG (America is worth saving. All hands on deck!)
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To: reaganaut1
Such laws reinforce stereotypes about the poor

So what?

6 posted on 10/11/2011 6:35:35 AM PDT by layman (Card Carrying Infidel)
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To: layman

“stereotypes” wouldn’t exist if there weren’t a good number of people that exhibit stereotypical behavior patterns.


7 posted on 10/11/2011 6:36:41 AM PDT by MrB (The difference between a Humanist and a Satanist - the latter knows whom he's working for)
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To: MrB

All recipients of government money should be required to take drug tests, including POTUS, SCOTUS and all other elected officials and govt. employees.


8 posted on 10/11/2011 6:37:41 AM PDT by Rudder (The Main Stream Media is Our Enemy---get used to it.)
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To: layman

I grew up in a mixed welfare/working poor neighborhood and I can assure you it is more than a stereotype.


9 posted on 10/11/2011 6:41:18 AM PDT by Straight Vermonter (Posting from deep behind the Maple Curtain)
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To: reaganaut1

Only a hardcore liberal would think of urinating as being a “hurdle”. Even the fleabaggers don’t seem to find urinating as being that big of a deal.


10 posted on 10/11/2011 6:44:09 AM PDT by FlingWingFlyer ("Greed" is wanting everything and demanding that somebody else pay for it.)
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To: reaganaut1

A few weeks back there was a social worker on the news complaining about the GOP in Michigan “cleansing” the state of the poor with new limits and restrictions on welfare.

She then threatened us by saying that if things keep up the way they are, she’ll lose her job and be forced to leave as well.


11 posted on 10/11/2011 6:50:45 AM PDT by cripplecreek (ALCS/NLCS playoff thread http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-chat/2789907/posts)
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To: Christian Engineer Mass

He is doing a wonderful job. Things are starting to improve here. Every couple of months the lame stream media runs a story about how unpopular Rick Scott is but the story quickly disappears because everyone knows it’s BS.


12 posted on 10/11/2011 6:50:49 AM PDT by liberalh8ter
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To: reaganaut1

Great first step. Now eliminate welfare, unemployment assistance, job training, food stamps and public housing.


13 posted on 10/11/2011 6:52:04 AM PDT by manic4organic (We won. Get over it.)
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To: layman

So employers who require drug tests are reinforcing a stereotype about job seekers? Maybe they don’t have drug tests as condition for employment at the Times...wait, that would explain a lot!


14 posted on 10/11/2011 6:52:22 AM PDT by GWynand
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To: Rudder

All government employees should have to take a drug test on a quarterly basis. School employees should take randomized tests just as frequently as student athletes.


15 posted on 10/11/2011 6:54:34 AM PDT by AD from SpringBay (We deserve the government we allow.)
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To: Christian Engineer Mass

As a Floridian, I agree. Scott is doing a good job. He is pi$$ing off all of the liberals in Miami-Dade & Broward counties. LOL

The ACLU is suing the State & Governor because of this law. I hope many other state do the same. I was in Wal-Mart a couple of months ago and was approached by someone offering to to pay for half of my groceries. He wanted 50 cents on the dollar for food stamp money. I told him he better move along or my he wouldn’t like where my foot was headed. He said he wasn’t breaking any laws.

This is a mjor problem going on through out the country. These people are stealing our money and the government is complicit in it. These are the Occupy Wall Street types.


16 posted on 10/11/2011 6:55:23 AM PDT by bbernard
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To: JPG
The article notes that FL charges for a drug test to get welfare but failed to point out that that fee is refunded if the urine sample comes back ‘clean’.

Any article from the NYT should be printed in italics since it is slanted.

17 posted on 10/11/2011 6:56:11 AM PDT by N. Theknow (Obama - Wear The Fail!)
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To: reaganaut1

Can we test for more?
1. Citizen of the USA for more than 5 years
2. Drug Test
3. Nicotine Test
4. Alcohol Test
5. Criminal Background for 5 years
6. Maximum is 5 years of benefits in entire life
7. Limited purchases to food and hygiene items only
8. Must be picked up at the welfare office
9. Able bodied people are required to put in community service for their welfare check equal to a 40 hour work week. (Garbage cleanup, and trash patrol, painting over graffiti, and sweeping up urban blight.)
10. Disabled don’t get welfare, they get other assistance instead that is covered under separate rules.
11. Extra children conceived and born while on welfare do not add to your welfare check ever again.
12. Mandatory random review of people on welfare to ensure compliance, if fraud is found they go to chain gang jail for 5 years and are never allowed welfare again.

How about that? Then I would happily allow people to be on welfare.

Welfare is not a right, it is for the really needy.


18 posted on 10/11/2011 6:57:59 AM PDT by King_Corey (www.kingcorey.com -- Twitter @KingCorey_Com)
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To: cripplecreek

“She then threatened us by saying that if things keep up the way they are, she’ll lose her job and be forced to leave as well.”

You can only hope!


19 posted on 10/11/2011 6:59:03 AM PDT by Henry Hnyellar
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To: reaganaut1

Won’t that hurt their feelings?


20 posted on 10/11/2011 6:59:51 AM PDT by drypowder
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To: JPG

As I was reading that sentence (in the article), that is exactly what I thought they should be doing.... I guess they beat me to that idea.


21 posted on 10/11/2011 7:00:02 AM PDT by Bikkuri
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To: reaganaut1
say reinforce stereotypes about the poor

Do drug tests for employment "reinforce stereotypes about" working people?

22 posted on 10/11/2011 7:02:38 AM PDT by Onelifetogive (I tweet, too... @Onelifetogive)
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To: Rudder

YES!!!

How many possible explanations for the actions of so many of our government employees and leaders?

‘The island might tip over’... ‘More regulations will create more jobs’...’I was for it, before I was against it’...

Drugs or drug damage.


23 posted on 10/11/2011 7:02:53 AM PDT by DUMBGRUNT (The best is the enemy of the good!)
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To: Henry Hnyellar
You can only hope!

It was a clear display of the fact that democrats need people to be poor.
24 posted on 10/11/2011 7:06:50 AM PDT by cripplecreek (ALCS/NLCS playoff thread http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-chat/2789907/posts)
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To: King_Corey

I’d throw in that they should give up their cable or satellite TV service. If they can afford that then they don’t need welfare.


25 posted on 10/11/2011 7:12:02 AM PDT by Straight Vermonter (Posting from deep behind the Maple Curtain)
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To: bbernard

“He wanted 50 cents on the dollar for food stamp money. I told him he better move along”

That would make a good letter to the editor


26 posted on 10/11/2011 7:12:48 AM PDT by Christian Engineer Mass (25ish Cambridge MA grad student. Many conservative Christians my age out there? __ Click my name)
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To: reaganaut1

I recently had a long discussion with a liberal about this. He was appalled at the notion of drug testing.

His argument was based on compassion and ‘helping people’.

Even if you accept that ‘helping people’ is a governmental duty, I still call giving money to drug addicts ‘enabling’, which is certainly not helping anybody.

I do not understand how anyone could be opposed to this.


27 posted on 10/11/2011 7:26:35 AM PDT by lacrew (Mr. Soetoro, we regret to inform you that your race card is over the credit limit.)
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To: lacrew

We know of someone who was on welfare and disability. He was capable of work. He sold his free prescription pain killers for cash. They switched him to a formulation that cannot be injected or smoked, cut off his welfare and lo and behold: he found a real job. BTW, he had been running a successful eBay business for years while collecting benefits. Not to mention his relatives discovered that he had been stealing from his mother’s SS every chance he got. He has stolen from and alienated everyone he ever knew, so cheating the state was just more of the same.

Multiply this guy by thousands.


28 posted on 10/11/2011 7:37:42 AM PDT by reformedliberal
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To: All

The country is quickly running out of patience for those trying to bilk the system.


29 posted on 10/11/2011 7:47:11 AM PDT by Maverick68
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To: reaganaut1

They should also require the surrender of the voter ID card, with it being returned the first month they decide to get their card back, instead of a check.


30 posted on 10/11/2011 8:35:55 AM PDT by Atlas Sneezed (Author of BullionBible.com - Makes You a Precious Metal Expert, Guaranteed.)
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To: reaganaut1

A random drug test was a condition for working at my last job. If it’s good enough for the ‘privilege’ of working then it’s good enough for the ‘privilege’ of collecting a welfare check.


31 posted on 10/11/2011 9:58:05 AM PDT by The Working Man (The mantra for BO's reign...."No Child Left a Dime")
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To: lacrew

I have been drug tested many times as a condition of employment, as have my kids, and wife. I have no problem with it, as a matter of fact, I’d like to see Congressmen (and women) and the President take one as a condition of employment as well. I’ll bet a random drug test would eliminate at least 100 members of the 435.
Good enough for welfare, good enough for the big boys.


32 posted on 10/11/2011 9:59:19 AM PDT by nobamanomore
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To: reaganaut1

If they don’t want to take a urine test they just don’t have to apply for welfare.

How much more easier can it be?


33 posted on 10/11/2011 11:35:16 AM PDT by VeniVidiVici ("Si, se gimme!")
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