so they passed the florida welfare drug testing law...guard your wallets..

Tah - posted on 08/18/2011 ( 12 moms have responded )

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If Floridians want welfare, they better make sure they are drug-free.



Republican Gov. Rick Scott signed a bill on Tuesday that requires benefit recipients to undergo drug testing.



Applicants for the federal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program who test positive for illicit substances won't be eligible for the funds for a year, or until they undergo treatment.



Those who fail a second time would be banned from receiving the funds for three years.



"While there are certainly legitimate needs for public assistance, it is unfair for Florida taxpayers to subsidize drug addiction," Scott said. "This new law will encourage personal accountability and will help to prevent the misuse of tax dollars.



If welfare candidates pass the drug screening, they'll be reimbursed for the test.



The legislation instantly came under a barrage of criticism from the American Civil Liberties Union and several of the Sunshine State's Democrats. They argued the bill is an invasion of privacy.





Gov. Scott. (Wilfredo Lee/AP)



"The wasteful program created by this law subjects Floridians who are impacted by the economic downturn, as well as their families, to a humiliating search of their urine and body fluids without cause or even suspicion of drug abuse," said Howard Simon, executive director of the ACLU of Florida.



"Searching the bodily fluids of those in need of assistance is a scientifically, fiscally and constitutionally unsound policy. Today, that unsound policy is Florida law."



The law, which will be enacted July 1, is likely to be challenged. A similar bill was ruled unconstitutional by a federal court in Michigan in 2003.



ashahid@nydailynews.com



With News Wire Services





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[deleted account]

Honestly if I was asked to take a test like that they'd get the finger. It has nothing to do with my daughter's insurance. I would honestly rather have her go without insurance than be treated like a criminal because we can't afford the $250+ a month for insurance.

Rosie - posted on 08/19/2011

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i have heard karla that in this case they would appoint someone to be the caretaker of the childrens money-for food, medical and such. which makes this a little better.



i just hate how everyone seems to think all welfare recipients are druggies. this only further perpetuates that myth. they all have a hard-on for this, they want to get rid of welfare all together, and they think this is going to help. it won't. you don't kick people when they're down. you help them.

and what better way to get rid of the actual drug users who are on welfare than by helping get rid of poverty. poverty and drugs are unfortunately often times combined, whether by use or dealing.

this war on drugs is the most costly, racist, ridiculous waste of money. the prison industry is thriving, poverty is well and alive, and we're all tricking ourselves if we think that simply not helping people who need help (and probably the reason some of them deal drugs) is going to get rid of the drug problem and welfare use in this country. tupac said it best "instead of a war on poverty they got a war on drugs so the police can bother me"

[deleted account]

lol at the first bit there Tah; although sometimes it feels like they want that too.

I'll throw out there that you can't buy cigs or alcohol with any state money. Both food stamps and Cash assistance forbid it. At least my state offers free assistance for everyone when it comes to alcohol and drug addiction, as well as quiting smoking.

Tah - posted on 08/19/2011

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You already have to disclose everything but your panty size every month..and goodness forbid the 5 bucks you are over the limit appears, then you get a big fat denial..it's just another way to kick, stomp and step over the poor....I mean it only matters when you can relate right??....so if you have no clue what' it's like then you aren't sympathetic or empathetic and start passing laws that show that..so when some poor soul is breaking in your car and the crime in your gated community goes up..don't be surprised...bleecckkk...

Rosie - posted on 08/19/2011

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oh, and another thing, lol. what about alcoholics, or smokers? sure those drugs aren't illegal, but they could still use their welfare money to get those things. so the alcoholic, smoker, welfare recipient gets to go on his merry way, while another person who also uses a drug (we forget that alcohol and tobacco are drugs convienantly) gets denied for the same damn thing.

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It was what I was told when applying for food assistance last year. I was asking a lot of questions and one of her answers somehow came to that. It could be that she was trying to shut me up. lol We get all food and cash on a card (like a debt card and can only use them at certain stores).

I think you have a good point Barb. I just don't like how they insinuate its because they are all druggies. It is very true will the legal drugs side. Some of them out there are worse than the illegal drugs.

Barb - posted on 08/20/2011

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Well, first off, for every job i've ever had, i have had to submit to a drug test.. If i want to WORK for the money, i have to prove i'm not on illegal drugs... soooo i think if you are asking for the money that others that work for and had to take a drug test to get the job, it's not such a big deal.

What i do find funny, however, is that most people that are on assistance are on it because of medical issues.. so they want to be sure you are only on the legal drugs that fuck you up.. just not the illegal ones.

[deleted account]

How do they stop you from using your cash for whatever you want? I get my cash assistance out of an ATM machine (cuz I don't have a checking account)...

NOT that I buy cigs or alcohol since I'm extremely against both, but I can spend my cash on whatever I see fit and the government doesn't know.

As for the op topic.... I'm not sure. I used to be against it and now I'm fairly neutral. I wouldn't like to go through the hassle or 'invasion of privacy' of a drug test, but I've also got nothing to hide since I've never done an illegal drug in my life. ;)

Rosie - posted on 08/19/2011

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you can't buy cocaine with it either though brittany, that was my point. :)

Karla - posted on 08/19/2011

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I have mixed feeling on this issue; unlike Dyan I have not heard much debate on the topic. I see an abundance of problems that would stem from this law, and I hope they have a ton of social workers to help them.

My first thought… yeah, those in need are applying for government aid they should be able to be “clean.”
Then I think, “what if they aren’t clean?” Who pays for rehab, can they get assistance with that? What if they have kids, should they have custody of kids if they are using drugs? Will child protective services step in? Will they be prosecuted for drug use? And is that the most productive way to deal with the problem?

What about false positive testing?

Out of fear, will people in need refrain from applying for assistance?

I am sure there are more issues, and I do not trust that the legislators addressed them all. They have proven that they are out of touch with the reality of day to day life for the underprivileged.

Tah - posted on 08/18/2011

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exactly right...and im a christian..i guess they do the soup kitchen at their church and thats good enough...and by the way..they do drug test the military...lol

Rosie - posted on 08/18/2011

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i think it's crap. i used to think so simply and think stuff like this needed to happen, but after a couple of these debates i realized how ridiculous this is.
not only would it hurt the children whose parents need assistance to feed them, and house them. it obviously keeps the persona that all welfare recipients are lazy druggies.
since people think this is such a good idea, they should also be all for drug testing congress, the president, governors, mayors, all military members, corporate CEO'S (since they are the biggest welfare recipients), and everybody who uses student loans.
it's a big fat fucking waste of money, and does nothing to help people who ARE using drugs. i can see then turning to crime to get what they need.
use this money for education, rehab, and other ways to help get rid of poverty in this country. this is just the conservative way of dealing with poverty in this country. label them all druggies, and then tell them to pull themselves up by their bootstraps. funny thing is that most of these people claim to be christians, how on earth a christian can want to starve someones child, or take away someones home because they use drugs, and not want to help is beyond me. people have gone fucking loony in this country.

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