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Drug Testing For Welfare in Florida

Updated on September 2, 2012

Florida Governor Rick Scott

Governor Rick Scott who signed into law, mandatory drug testing in order to receive welfare funds.
Governor Rick Scott who signed into law, mandatory drug testing in order to receive welfare funds. | Source

Florida Drug Testing for Welfare

I got this in an e-mail today, which I just had to edit because it was duplicate web content from another site, and I kind of wondered what the community of writers might think about it. My personal feeling is that this kind of law is long overdue. If we are going to lend financial support to the genuinely needy, I have no problem with that, it is something we should do. What I do have a problem with is allowing a drug culture to sink it's roots deeper into society while we support it with our tax dollars. Every dollar we provide for a drug user is one that is taken from a family or individual whose role is our society is essential for the well being of our entire nation.

Here is basically what the e-mail said about Florida's new drug testing for welfare law:

Florida is the first state to pass a law mandating drug testing in order to receive welfare benefits. Only 49 states left to go.

Governor Rick Scott signed into law, a bill that requires drug testing before welfare funds can be given to an applicant. If the drug test is passed, the State refunds the cost of the test. If it is not, the applicant must pay for the test and won't be eligible for a year unless they complete a treatment program. If an applicant fails a second test, benefits are denied for three years.

Of course those entities that always scream foul play, some liberals, lots of Democrats and the ACLU, will claim it is unconstitutional even though drug testing is already mandatory these days with most job applications. No matter the probable outcome that it will be deemed Constitutional, these folks seem compelled to squeal anytime it may help send votes in their direction.

I would simply add that, if it were up to me, welfare recipients must re-test for drug use once or twice a year at a random interval to ensure they continue to remain drug-free.

So what are your thoughts? Care to share them with us?


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    • Ellen Karman profile image

      Ellen Karman 5 years ago from medina, Ohio

      The last two remarks have restored my belief that yes there are some understanding people and not just angry people. Our rights are being taken away from us one by one and soon they'll be none. The patriot act has to go! Our government is so evil. It is all lies and we are acting like sheep. We should be united against all big government and ban lobbying and make all house and senate seats be filled for every hearing. I hate watching a wonderful meaningful speech and then CNN spans and no one is present. They are off playing golf, gambling, drinking and cheating. Not all but it sure seems that way. Maybe all of them should be drug tested.

    • sradie profile image

      sradie 5 years ago from Palm Coast FL

      I am in complete agreement with your last paragraph James A Watkins. We created a terrible monster when we committed the needs of our citizens in poverty to the government. How on earth can we expect a bunch of politicians sitting in their posh appointed chairs in Congress to understand the needs of the local communities with regard to this? Charity and compassion are the responsibility of the church and the local communities to administer as they have first-hand knowledge of their needs locally. When we decided that Jesus didn't know best, when we deviated from God's Word, we failed as usual. Secular humanism will always fail.

    • James A Watkins profile image

      James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago

      I have such complicated feelings about this. The short answer is yes, anyone receiving public assistance should be drug tested.

      I grew up near the hood and I can tell you that the crack dealers load up inventory the 1st and the 15th because when the gubmint checks come out they have a frenzy of sales.

      I actually am opposed to ALL drug testing, as a violation of individual rights. However, if you must have one to work you surely must have one to live without working.

      But this sad situation reflects on the fact that the gubmint should not be in charge of charity anyway. This has been a gross mistake. I believe gubmint takeover of charity has a satanic origin. Jesus told us to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, house the homeless, et al. AND what? TELL THEM THE GOSPEL! Gubmint charity is counterfeit. It sucks up the money that would be spent far better on church charity, where the underlying problem, the real problem, the spiritual problem, would be dealt with along with physical needs. Gubmint charity treats people like animals to be husbanded. Church charity treats them like human beings.

    • Ellen Karman profile image

      Ellen Karman 5 years ago from medina, Ohio

      I think if everyone is worried about how much our tax dollars are being spent how about this stat. These two wars are kids are over fighting - it cost us forty million per soldier to keep in action per year. going on over a decade now. Not to mention what it's going to cost to get them back to normal or to treat the PTSD. Not to mention maintaing all the aircraft, supplying amunition, fuel and food etc. Our government is too big. I can't get on the Florida thing because I have written and erased and written and erased what I think about that. I dunno. I never thought our nation would be doing what it's doing. Now I listen to all the lie's from drilling companies who want to FRACK for natural gas on my farm and that it won't in any way pollute my well water. Yeah, like I'm gonna fall for that. But many hard working farmers are living below poverty level that the eight grand per acre sounds good to them so they can buy a new combine. Then the water goes bad and all the animals hair falls out. I'm disgusted by both sides of the asile. I am a fence rider for now I guess.

    • aykianink profile image

      aykianink 5 years ago

      I am drug-free so I personally would never be affected by such a law. I live zero tolerance...but I question if it should apply to others. This is that thing where non-vegetarians just want vegetarians to quiet down, you know? I'm not sure how I feel, but it certainly seems like a good idea.

    • BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

      Jack Hazen 5 years ago from Blitzburgh area

      pstraubie48, there are many abuses in the way government entitlements are provided, and our current president will surely make the problem worse not better.

      I have no problem with those truly in need receiving medical benefits, or whatever, on the taxpayer's dime (my nickel). But let's make sure those who are receiving such benefits actually deserve them and are not just "playing the system."

      You are saying the same thing I believe. We have to rein in this insanity.

    • sradie profile image

      sradie 5 years ago from Palm Coast FL

      I don't know if this will work on the particular assistance some people may need pstraubie48, but we had a friend in a similar situation and we found a solution. We started an irrevocable Qualified Income Trust for him into which, his excess money was placed each month to bring his income down to qualification level. It's legal, it works and in his case absorbed $50 a month to help him qualify. I can't spell out all the details here but most banks will have someone who knows how to do this and can set one up free of charge. Check it out.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 5 years ago from sunny Florida

      I fully support drug testing for those who receive welfare assistance. However what I do not support is the way welfare services are provided. It is not equitable. I will refrain from saying more on that topic.

      It is tragic, wrong, and criminal that those who really do need assistance especially medical cannot receive it because they make 4 dollars a month too much money. I know a family in which the breadwinner *he is the breadwinner because his wife has terminal cancer and so does her son0 works about 3 days a week as the small business in which he is employed is failing. So what happens when they figure to see if the fam qualifies for help, they take a the top three months where he may have worked 4 days during some of those weeks. That will be enough to put him over the top for qualifying It is insane. And then I see all of those who are not even TRYING to get a job spending freely on our tax dollars.

      Sorry i got off topic

    • BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

      Jack Hazen 5 years ago from Blitzburgh area

      And the drug tests should be REAL drug tests. Don't let somebody with a bottle of pee in their pocket pass when they shouldn't.

      sradie, I've heard Florida lawmakers are likewise considering requiring drug tests for unemployment compensation. Another fine idea. If you have to take a drug test to get a job, why shouldn't you have to take a drug test to get paid for not getting a job?

      You have to take a drug test to get worker's compensation. Maybe not much of one, in some cases. A few years back I had a worker's comp claim. I took the drug test at the hospital. The nurse at the lab hands me the bottle and closes the bathroom door. I could have cared less if she watched. I had a few minutes before been examined by the worker's compensation doctor at the same hospital. A female doctor, quite attractive, and the injury I suffered was a double hernia. So I wasn't feeling real shy when I got to the lab. Lol. If people don't want to take a "supervised" urine test, it's find with me if they take a blood test instead.

    • sradie profile image

      sradie 5 years ago from Palm Coast FL

      Thanks for the read darlene. Not really off-topic. I think generally the topic is the abuse of our welfare system. It's rampant. My wife worked for Nevada Welfare for 30+ years and she saw it all. I sat in the parking lot many times in my old Ford Ranger truck, waiting to pick her up from work, and watched young women with 4 or 5 kids drive up in Explorers and Escalades, hop out dressed to the nines and walk into the office to get their welfare checks. Something is wrong with our welfare system and drug testing is ONE step on the road to fixing it.

    • profile image

      darlene 5 years ago

      i agree with blackandgoldjack.....i saw someone recently use their fs card at a convience store to buy a 5.49 pint of ben and jerrys...i eat publix brand icecream when i can afford the topic i know but irritates me....ty

    • sradie profile image

      sradie 5 years ago from Palm Coast FL

      Yes Abrushing1968, the proof is always in the pudding. We will have to see, first of all, if it stands the test of Constitutionality because YOU KNOW it will be tested. Then we'll have to see how it plays out in real life application. Rightfully though, it should save the taxpayers a lot of money.

    • Abrushing1968 profile image

      Aaron Rushing 5 years ago from USA- Florida

      I can see value in this law. I agree, at least in principle, that it seems to be a good idea. Lets see what happens.



    • sradie profile image

      sradie 5 years ago from Palm Coast FL

      It follows that I would agree with you about food stamps too. ANY FORM OF WELFARE should have to meet this requirement IMHO. Thanks for the comment BLACKANDGOLDJACK.

    • BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

      Jack Hazen 5 years ago from Blitzburgh area

      I totally agree with drug testing for welfare.

      It should also apply to food stamps. What some people who get food stamps do is trade food for money so they can buy booze and drugs.

      It irks me that some eat steak while I eat hamburger, smoke dope, and drink fine while I drink cheap beer on my dime.