Florida Orders Applicants for Federal Needy Families Program to be Drug Tested…and Pay for It
Thursday, June 02, 2011
Gov. Rick "Drug Test" Scott
Republican Governor Rick Scott signed the legislation that applies to anyone applying for the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program. The program provides block grants to states with the goals of “promoting job preparation, work and marriage; preventing out-of-wedlock pregnancies; and encouraging the formation and maintenance of two-parent families.”
Those failing the drug screening won’t be eligible to receive benefits for one year or until they successfully complete a substance abuse program. Applicants who pass their test will be reimbursed for the cost.
The American Civil Liberties Union has criticized the law, calling it unconstitutional and fiscally irresponsible. ACLU attorneys point to a similar law passed eight years ago in Michigan which was struck down by a federal court.
The legislation follows an executive order issued by Scott in March requiring all state employees to submit to urine analysis at least four times a year. In those drug testing cases, the state will cover the cost, estimated to be more than $3.5 million annually.
Florida to Require Drug Testing for All Welfare Recipients (by Eric Dolan, The Raw Story)
HB 353 (Florida House of Representatives)
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