Drug Testing for Welfare Recipients: Pros and Cons

July 8, 2011

According to CNN and a number of other news sources, Florida officials are taking quick strides toward implementing a new program that will require potential recipients of cash aid and welfare to undergo drug testing when they apply. Some think this idea is great. Others are offended by the implications. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons.

Drug Testing for Welfare Recipients: The Pros

The way proponents of the new drug testing initiative sees it – and that includes the lawmakers who are signing it into policy – it’s not fair to ask taxpayers to pay for the drug addiction of those who are receiving welfare if they are, in fact, using those funds to buy heroin, cocaine, crystal meth, et cetera.

Florida’s Governor Rick Scott recently signed the legislation that would make it mandatory for adults who were applying for aid to undergo drug testing as part of the application process. Said Scott: “It’s the right thing for taxpayers. It’s the right thing for citizens of this state that need public assistance. We don’t want to waste tax dollars. And also, we want to give people an incentive to not use drugs.”

Do These Pro-Drug Testing Arguments Stand Up?

The incentive not to use drugs is a positive aspect to the new legislation. If knowing that your cash aid depended upon your ability to produce a clean sample and pass a drug test could help you to stay clean, then it’s likely that you’ll be able to spend your time going to school or looking for a better job that pays more than welfare and so more quickly reduce your need for state assistance.

Drug Testing for Welfare Recipients: The Cons

Some who would have to undergo the drug testing are offended by the implication that simply because you are having financial problems you also have a drug addiction. They say that the stigma against those who receive funds from the government is bad enough without making it worse with mandatory drug testing. Others say that it may stop people from seeking aid who need it to properly care for their children.

Do These Anti-Drug Testing Arguments Stand Up?

The only problem with these arguments is that, if welfare recipients aren’t abusing drugs, then the drug testing will actually serve to remove some of the stigma of implied drug addiction that many assume even without drug testing. Additionally, it should be pointed out that most jobs also require random and mandatory drug testing done sporadically throughout employment – not just at the time of application. This is actually far more lenient than others endure making the same amount at local retail store working part-time.

What do you think? Leave a comment and tell us your opinion on mandatory drug testing for welfare recipient applicants.

  1. john barrett August 11, 2011

    so what about people who drink and are alcoholics, are they to test for that? where will this end up? ..people who smoke, people who don’t eat healthy? i mean why should the nation pay for someones junk food habit? what about people who are addicted to prescribed drugs?

    • shelly August 12, 2011

      All good questions, but since they cant prove a “junk food” habit that will be hard but i have to agree with the smoking one if we arent going to pay for illegal drugs then taxpayers shouldn’t have to pay for smoking or drinking either. there will be a way to test for these and then i hope that too is implemented. I really beileve this is a good law and i hope my state is the next to pick it up, if we have to be tested for our jobs which is our own money we are working for than why should we pay for someone to have an addiction of any sort?

      • Heather Shell April 17, 2013

        Our jobs only test for I’ll illegal drugs. They don’t test for cigarettes or alcohol either.

    • Paige Fish November 6, 2012

      drugs are illegal so its something the government can limit to a point, if you are 21 you can drink as much as you want, there is no way to stop it but at least the government is trying to make things right for people that work everyday!

  2. john barrett August 11, 2011

    what about people with gambling addictions? why should hardworking americans pay for them to go and throw the money down the drain at some casino or bookies?

  3. john barrett August 11, 2011

    just to add, what if someone was being prescribed an opiate or other controlled drug for some medical condition which was identified by the positive test result. they would then be in a position where they would be forced to disclose information about the condition and details of the treatment they were receiving to the welfare officers. this would undoubtedly be kept on file and be accessible by the government, courts and police agencies and could then easily be used against you at a later date. who knows who else would get access to that private information at some time in the future.

    • SJF August 16, 2011

      Many people have had to take opiates for one reason or another. When you go for a drug test, one of the first things they have you do is list all OTC and Prescription medications you’re taking. It’s not to invade your privacy, they couldn’t care less why you’re taking them, they just want to make sure you’re legally allowed to use them. If ya pop positive for one of them, you show the prescription bottle with your name on it and it’s open and shut.

    • alex November 17, 2011

      John Barnett, with ll of your comments you seem like the kind of people out there taking advantage of the system in the first place. I’m in the military and i go through random drug tests on a regular basis, sometimes 3 in one month. If I’m prescribed something that would otherwise be incriminated it’s no big deal, I simply state that prior to taking the drug test and it is never brought up again. Why should people defending our country be drug tested on a regular basis but not welfare recipients. The way I see it, I believe welfare recipients should not only be drug tested, but also have their check direct deposited onto a card that is only able to be used at a place of purchase, not an atm. That way there is little to no possible way they could buy illegal drugs with it. That would also eliminate most gambling. As far as consumption of alcohol and/or tobacco products, those are legal drugs. If someone wants to drink or smoke, let them. At least we are eliminating some of the unnecessary spending out of welfare recipients. In conclusion, what I’m saying is either get a better job so you don’t have to get welfare and/or stop using illegal drugs or stop abusing legal ones, end of story.

      • AJC June 14, 2012

        Alex the military is a cop out most people who join the military do it because they are not good at anything else. Your opinion seems to be from close ties to the issue. Use your GI bill to get an education and hope that you have not seen the tragedy of war in which has racked the minds of the military kids who have who are coming home to no jobs and are left to themselves on nothing and have psychological issues that have come from the results of war and then turn to drugs to get through the day now what? Be careful of the judgment you level on anyone cause it reveals your situation.

        • Wes June 16, 2012

          Just because he is in the military does mean he is not good at anything else
          The fact is him being in the military affords u the luxury to run ur sewer so shut the fuck up

          • Michelle June 29, 2012

            I agree with Wes!! Our military people are out there fighting for our freedom and all the luxuries we have today. Not because they couldn’t be doctors or lawyers.

          • Beth August 2, 2012

            I think that people in the military have to be drug tested and working people. Why not people that dont work!~

        • RJC September 6, 2012

          Kind of hypocritical to tell him that most of the people that join the military are not good at something, then tell him not to pass judgement on someone. Here’s a thought, why don’t you practice what you preach.

        • Jeff November 8, 2012

          WWWWOOOOOOOWWWWWW!!!! So, I guess the men that walked on the moon couldn’t do anything better either, so they joined the Marines and Navy to fly paper airplanes? I guess all of the tests for airplanes, flight suites, space crafts were tested by monkeys like you, huh? STOOOOOPPPIDDD people like you are the reason why this country is in the condition that it’s in…..

      • Sigotratando November 16, 2012

        Drug testing for employment & the military personnel is about worker & troop safety (of others) as well as keeping down the costs of dealing with drug-abuse-related affects on business. I can see where the latter is comparable to drug-testing welfare folks, but it doesn’t rise to being a real problem nor being a risk to safety of others around the users. The comparison is not apt.

      • Dennis January 15, 2013

        Sounds like if the military had been doing drug test on vietnam soldiers more than 1/2 of them would have been able to come home and avoid death.

      • Mandy ( canada) March 17, 2013

        People cant just stop using drugs. It an addiction!! They need help. Most people hate using but they get sick if they stop. Its a disease and maybe you should educate yourself before passing judgment. I am a recovering addict and in the beginning yes it was fun in the end it was awful i didnt even get high anymore. I only used to feel “normal” or i would get very sick. Would need hospitalisation to come off of “opiates”. When i was sick and an addict i was on walfare and they knew i was using drugs, i was sick and it is a disease and i was tying to get help whether that means i stop using that day or a month or 2. I was trying and i was sick and i needed shelter and food. People have not and will never understand the disease of addiction unless you experience it or educate yourself. So stop judging and educate yourself and have a little empathy.
        There are no drug screening because there on welfare? And thats probably why because of there addiction.
        With that being said i think that after maybe 6 months and the recipient hasnt went to treatment or is not in the process of getting better then yes they need to be takin of the sytem there has to be consequences, and hopefully that will force them to get help.
        People would more likely admit they are doing drugs if there is no fear of getting kicked of welfare. There needs to be a system that works.
        To campare the military and welfare recipients. Just doesnt work in my eyes.

        ( i would rather be a drug addict then a rapist) There are problems everywhere in all societys and all organization. The problems are where the system is letting us all down. It just isnt working.

    • Carla June 13, 2012

      People who have to do drug testing for their work are required to fully disclose these same issues. I don’t see where public assistance people should have it any different.

    • Keith June 14, 2012

      What is the shame in producing a prescription from your Dr’s office?

    • Logan November 5, 2012

      Its called a perscription which encorperates medicinal use as perscribed by a doctor. No medical information is needed just a perscription. If there is a perscription it is traced nationally anyways so if it is perscribed there is nothing to hide and is not an issue. If someone is hiding it they shouldn’t have it to begin with therefore there should be no issue.

    • Heather Shell April 17, 2013

      If it was prescribed, they can never get into legal trouble for possessing it.

  4. PAM August 12, 2011

    Great idea. There is way to much abuse of the system and it needs to stop. I just had a government employee contact me to rent my house out and wanted to know if I exepted section 8 which in California is for help in paying your rent. I even recently had someone ask me if I wanted to buy her food stamps for 50 cents on the dollar. Give me a break. Drug test them and maybe next we can test for alcohol abuse. We gotta start somewhere

    • shelly August 12, 2011

      Agreed pam! children are taught what they learn from their parents so if they see their parents doing it, it is only natural for them to follow in the footsteps. we need to start somewhere. i have heard from many people here in my own town how government money is being spent fivorously, this is a great start and hopefully they will follow up on everything. If reciepiants know they have to stay clean to get their money maybe they will go better themselves with an education or finding a job!

  5. gman4691 August 20, 2011

    I work. If it’s OK to test me, it’s OK to test them. ’nuff said

  6. Gino September 15, 2011

    Just say yes!

  7. metter September 27, 2011

    What about the kids who no longer get assistance due to parents taking drugs?? You can say then they should not have their kids but the fact of the matter is states can barley afford the kids in homes now let alone all the ones that could be taken then.. also they dont always take these children bc when the parent test positive then they place them in programs to help them get better. Also consider the facts of the price it cost to drug test all these people seriously and just bc someone is getting help does not mean they are on drugs. And for those of you worried about your tax dollars welfare should be the least considering it gets the least amount of tax dollars. Do the research also most people on welfare do work they just dont get paid enough.. as far as them educating themselves better consider the fact that they might have learning disablities or dont believe enough in themselves. And who would work these low paying jobs to serve you if they didnt?? Everything is the way it is for a reason : )

    • Taylor December 1, 2011

      In a couple articles it mentions that if a parent loses their welfare money, kids can still get food assistance given to their grandparents or other family members.

    • Kelle March 28, 2012

      Well honestly I believe that if the parents are doing drugs the children should not have to be in that kind of situation. A home with drugs is not a stable home and those kids should be taken away from that horror.

    • JP March 15, 2013

      If the people on welfare have nothing to hide, a frug test is not going to cause them any harm and if they are then they can get the help they need rather than continuing on the way they have. Continuing on because it is the way it has always been, is terrible logic. By that logic it would still be ok to continue on with slavery since it had always been that way before the civil war. The bottom line is that things need to change. I happen to work a low paying job and undergo random drug testing and i am quite frankly glad to have a job and have no problem with the process. People recieving assistance should be just as glad to have the money to feed their families and should not be offended either unless of course they have something to hide.

  8. stefft October 13, 2011

    You are so right!!!!!

  9. Dana King October 24, 2011

    I agree also! i am a 17 year old male who works at a small store in my hometown. there has been a case where a young woman was reaching into her purse to get her food stamps and a bag of pot fell out on the counter. also too many people buy literally pounds of candy, energy drinks, and sandwiches on thier EBT cards, but yet they have enough cash for thier 30 racks of beer and thier cigarettes! we need to stop letting people abuse the welfare, AND the disabled system!

    • Ty Northcutt January 22, 2013

      It all sounds good and righteous to do the drug testing on welfare receipients, but I am afraid the outcome for many will not be so good. Once we start down this road it will of necessity have to be expanded to include alcohol and smoking and other things unhealthy for people. No doubt abuse will take place on the other end as officials have more power to wield against some welfare mother. And the kids will suffer, but we don’t really care about that do we. They suffer either way just being in a ghetto. Do you realize that if Drugs were legal we could save a make enough money to give addicts drugs free and pay them to stay home and still cost half what it cost to jail them and take care of their kids. As the bible says the poor will always be with us. How we take care of the problem says a lot about our society. We need to battle abuse but we need to watch overreaction to situations, and I think this might be one of those times. We don’t spend enough for fraud in many entitlement programs, but we are going to spend a bunch in this area and probably the net gain will we little if nothing, and possible cause othe problems that will cost us more.

  10. Macro student October 31, 2011

    I don’t understand why this is such and issue. This testing should be done, I have seen people collecting welfare and food stamps that drive cars that are more than i can afford. Oh and then there is the person on food stamps that eats steaks lobster and any other high priced food when i can barely afford hamburger. I have applied for food stamps in the past because i am going to school and out of work with no unemployment anymore and was told that we make on my husbands paycheck 10.00 a month to much. I would have no problem with the drug testing, you get tested when you work so why not when you don’t.

    • aileen November 2, 2012

      wow I am doing a report for school on this subject. Yes I agree drug testing should be inforced !!! I am a single working mom who also is going to school ( on my own dime) to better educate and make a better life for me and my kids. I too tried to get food stamps and was told i made $22.00 to much. When I wlaked out there was a lady who looked like she was wearing cloths tha tcost more than a weeks wages colelcting her stuff. I akse dher how she does it. she said honey oyu got to learn to wrok the sytem… get those ones out. Make welfare what it is meant to be a temporay help for a better futrue. I know friends that buy the ebst of foods on food stamps while I coupon and buy genric…we need to fix the people that abuse they sytem and this is a start. As for military –do not ever knock our mititary they are the hrdest working people and most dedeicated… get off wlefare and join!

  11. Debby November 19, 2011

    Since soo many are enraged over working to pay welfare tax-could someone please lay out some figures.I just wondered if anyone has an approx $figure an individual’s taxes go to for welfare in one year’s earnings.I know it goes to alot of things,can someone find a rough est.? Thanks

  12. Joe November 21, 2011

    When a drug testing law is implemented by an employer they must provide treatment if a person wants it. So, first take away the children. Care for them first. This is a must. Then send the offender to treatment if they desire. Yes, there are grave responsibilities that must be borne by the taxpayer.

  13. renee November 27, 2011

    I am probably the only one that has never been on state assistance and still disagrees with the drug testing. i agree whole heartedly that something needs to be done to stop the abuse of both drugs and welfare but i cant see how it will help. for one, who is going to pay for it? us taxpayers. another, once a person has been tested they know they can go score the dope that day knowing they wont be getting tested again for a while. realistically can any state afford to test the same person more than once a month? they know they will have a least a month to party after being tested. havent you ever noticed junkies seem to know how to beat the system, most are masters of theft,lies and manipulation. they never seem to get in trouble for the crimes of selling or using. products are available at stores to pass a drug test. and for those of us that take tests to get a job and for those that get random tests to keep their jobs it is not being done to collect money, it is being done for safety purposes. the companies pay for that not the tax payers. so if a company wants to spend the money to ensure the safety in their company let them, i personally dont want to pay for the testing of users that will find a way to still use. i want to spend my tax dollars on assurance of a fool proof way. like not putting cash in their hands. take the food allowance currently given and give it to food banks to stock the hell up and then let them get their food there. i work at sams club, everyday someone uses ebt for steak and lobster. oh hell no, get a job if you want to eat like that. i had one member come thru with two full carts, she was hosting a 4th of july block party. nice huh? i should have been invited. i helped pay for it! give them utility and rent vouchers, not cash. and give them one year. thats enough time to get a job. just sayin…

  14. Ling November 29, 2011

    @ Renee. The whole point of drug testing should be done randomly like they do at work. Also, drug testing has advanced so much that they detect masking agents now. I work in HR and conduct these drug testing policies and it’s not just for safety but also morality. A company doesn’t want to promote the use of drugs and there are employee assistance programs to address such issues. I think the government should adhere to the same standards. It would teach a person who is out of work to keep up the same lifestyle as they would if they were employed. In the case of being smart and functioning, you can be smart for only so long. You will eventually slip and get caught. There are precautions to put in place like what Alex suggested. With all the other contributors, I agree with you and drug use goes hand in hand with unemployment in unskilled jobs. The highly skllled positions are hard to come by right now but I can assure you that the unskilled positions in manual labor are in full swing. Of all my terminations I’ve conducted due to positive drug results and the worst experience I’ve witnessed was the employee whipping out a cel phone saying that she will be off for a while because she’s planning to spend the next few months hanging out at home because she can get back on food stamps and rent assistance.

  15. Anonymous December 7, 2011

    Three words for people concerned about drug abusers’ children: Child Protective Services

  16. Rachel January 23, 2012

    Who cares what people put into their own bodies, that’s their choice. To all of you that try to justify this by saying something as ignorant as “I get tested at work so they should be tested for Welfare benefits”; You cannot justify one bad thing by comparing it to another. If you continue to make arguments like that, obviously your only going to make everything EQUALLY unjust. We have the Pursuit of Happiness in America, that means if someone wants to do drugs to be happy then who cares, let them, that’s their choice to make, you should not be trying to control that. However, it’s true that it is unfair to ask taxpayers to contribute to someone’s drug habits with their own money. Which is exactly why Alex had the right idea in saying that the money should be deposited onto a card that can only be used at certain places. This way, taxpayers money is not being wasted on other people’s drug habits, while at the same time, people can maintain their privacy. I know that drugs aren’t “socially acceptable” and so many of you will disagree with this.. but who cares about what’s socially acceptable, this law isn’t supposed to be for people who have something against drugs to show their disapproval for drug abusers, it’s so that taxpayers money is not wasted on drugs. I have given a solution for that problem that doesn’t involve an invasion of privacy, this way, everyone is happy.

  17. Cabe February 8, 2012

    This is just prejudice against the poor… plain and simple, and it will open up Pandora’s Box. All you are really saying is that for every dollar you spend on govt. assistance, the recipient will have an extra dollar they could use to buy drugs or alcohol. You should keep this in mind, every homeowner in the country get a mortgage interest deduction, and that deduction is a govt. handout, just like welfare… do you think it would be fair to ask every homeowner to take random drug tests or lose their mortgage interest deduction? Of course not… even though that mortgage interest deduction gives homeowners the extra cash they need to buy the booze for their Super Bowl parties. Face it, it’s unfair to single out the poor…

    • Mykaela March 27, 2012

      I agree 100%. The governments motive is just, but they are only pointing the finger at one small group that recieves government money. Poor or not, they are only a minority of benefit recievers. It seems to me a kind of prejudice to strike only one group and to allow the others the right to judge and not be judged.

    • annonamous March 15, 2013

      Honestly, the government’s job is very limited. there is nothing in the constitution about handing out any kind of monitary aid to the citizens at all. they are there to ensure that our rights are protected. the rest of the things that citizens have entrusted them to do encroach on these rights seatbelt laws, drug laws, speed limits, etc. all violate our rights as citizens and no one bothers to protest, but suggest that someone pay for their own groceries and everyone goes berzerk. there are low paying jobs out there and there are people ho manage to live within their means and still have food and take care of their families. more than 1 person in a house may have to work and maybe they will have to practice some family planning but everyone has the same opportunity to succeed, and no one deserves to have aid forever. it goes back to the old saying “Give a man a fish and feed him for a day. teach him to fish and feed him for a lifetime.” this country hands out millions of fish but has no classes on how to fish.

  18. jason February 19, 2012

    why cant we just poison the worlds drug supply and get rid of them all

  19. Brierly February 22, 2012

    I grew up in a household that depended on welfare, and I am 100% behind the bill to drug test recipients. My parents never had money for food but sure as heck never went without their many drugs of choice. All the money they spent on drugs could have been spent on caring for their family, but they didn’t need to do that with the crutch of welfare. There are many people on welfare who do not do drugs, and many who do. Drug testing is absolutely fair and should be done in every state. For those who think it is no one’s business if someone wants to do drugs. Wrong! No way should people be allowed to support their families with tax dollars, while they spend their own money to support their drug habit. Yes, there are already alot of children in the system and if we remove more children from homes that will cost more tax dollars. Maybe the money saved by drug testing welfare recipients can be used to save these children from the bad situations society should be protecting them from. I feel a hell of a lot better about my tax dollars taking children from a drug filled environment than I do about supporting their parents addiction.

  20. tina March 2, 2012

    I think that all this drug testing is going to open new doors 4 people. I mean that people if smoking pot might fing a nother drug that might not say in there system as long just saying to me I thing thing r going to get worse.

  21. stephen May 4, 2012

    I couldn’t agree more. We need to drug test everyone that uses tax payer money.(and in one form or another that is everyone) Let’s start with the politicians by testing for alcohol considering that is the most common drug used by the rich. Then we can follow senior citizens enrolled in medicare around and see if they go to the casino. Then we can hit up the average citizen. Government workers can check on their cell phones, television and computers to see if any type of addiction might exist there. I know it seems a little intrusive but how else will we be able to find out if they are “escaping reality”. Using electronics in an abusive manner is obviously becoming an out of control situation. Watch out if you happen to be a work-a-holic. While the pursuit of money isn’t considered to be negative right now, just wait til the stories of all the neglected children come out. The fact is everyone has an unhealthy obsession, I only see outrage towards the poor though. Companies received billions yet no one cry’s out for those welfare recipients to be tested. Is spending billions of dollars on drug testing to weed out 2 percent of welfare recipients really a responsible way to be spending tax payer money? The only thing testing welfare recipients will do is show what hypocrites we truly are.

  22. April May 22, 2012

    I do not think that drug testing welfare recipients is saying that all of the people who need welfare are on drugs. It is scary knowing that there are parents out there who would not get assisstants for their children because they didn’t want to give up their drugs. I know that they are out there but at what point do we as a society stand up and say enough is enough. Drug addiction is a disease and these people need help. It will get a lot worse before it get better, crime rates will go up. Because if they are not getting their money from the government they will still find a way to take it from you and me. I agree with the idea of drug testing my fear is who will do the testing, what will happen after the testing with that information. Provention is the key to decreasing the drug problem in this country, but we waste all the money “fight the war” instead of preventing the escalation in the first place. Just saying.

  23. Sheena June 13, 2012

    I feel that everyone is responsible for supporting their own families. If you get into a bind and need assistance it is there for you temporarily. Government assistance was not put in place to be a form of income. It was supposed to be “temporary assistance” and somehow there is recipients that have never worked and have only always recieved welfare. There should be a time frame put on the amount of time you can recieve assistance and there should also be drug testing for all recipients to get them on the road to success. Job placement programs are all over the United States in every state and they should be automatically placed in a job placement program to assist with getting them off of the system and financial responsible for there families. If their income is still not enough they would still be able to qualify for supplemental benefits.

  24. brent June 15, 2012

    So how do the kids of these addicts get food to feed their siblings?

  25. amy July 24, 2012

    I have to weigh in here. This is rediculous. People have to drug test to get and keep a job, people getting state assistance need to as well. To the guy bashing the military man, shut your mouth you ignorant piece of trash!!! Damnit all of you people saying it’s wrong to test walfare recipiants are ignorant to WTF is really going on. Here is my qualifier… I’m a recovering drug addict, food addict, and whatever else i could get addicted to I did. My parents were dope addicts too, and yes they collected welfare, so did I. And guess what people, I traded that shit for dope, yep you heard it all of the addicts I know do the same damn thing. Today, I work, go to school fulltime, and I’m sober. I know what really goes on, and people to take responsability, get help for their addiction, and people getting assistence need to be grateful instead feeling entitled. Submit to the test, thank God you’re alive and getting help, and if your high thank God for the accountability. When people test positive they need to be offered treatment, and CPS needs to get involved. And you folks whining about not being able to afford CPS involvment, I don’t give a shit, these kids are learning how to be good little drug addicts just like mommy and daddy, i did.

    • megan July 26, 2012

      sorry but if you were such a drug user you should also know how incredibly easy it is to beat a drug test…..you know the one that you as a taxpayer just paid for. The reality is, there is always a loop hole and anyone who is desperate enough to trade it for drugs would be smart enough to find that loop hole.

  26. MEGAN July 26, 2012

    I think the logic behind this makes sense BUT at the same time the taxpayers aren’t going to see ANY benefit from the situation either. Do you think that people who have the time and energy to go through the process (which is ridiculously long in the first place) wouldn’t take the steps to avoid a positive drug test? Come on people! If someone is addicted to illegal drugs they are more then aware of the limitless ways around beating a drug test! So then what? Do we continue to drug test them throughout the time they are on welfare? And who do you think pays for ALL these drug tests? The taxpayers!! The entire thing shows just how stupid our government is….congrats!

  27. Rick Martin August 6, 2012

    I was addicted to crack cocaine. I had to take drug test for all sorts of reasons. There are ways to beat these test. The real issue is are the states using poor people as a scapegoat to cut social programs. I don’t think people should be able to use welfare money to buy drugs. Neither do a lot of people. So what is the answer? That is the real question. States form task forces to battle crime, why not form one to battle this socil issue that is costing states money?

  28. Alejandra September 4, 2012

    I agree that it is not fair that we have to take a drug test to get a job, or be in the millitary, and people who receive welfare dont have to. But reality is that our economy depends on the money being used through food stamps, Medicaid, and/or TANF, and drug testing welfare clients is going to make a huge impact in our economy and more than likely it wont be for the best. The parents of children who do take drugs and come out positive are possibly going to continue to do drugs leaving their children with no food. Then the kids will become malnurished and end up in hospitals that they wont be able to pay and their bills will be left to the tax payers. It’s a shame that people in this great country have to live in poverty. Another thing is that most of these people on welfare are not drug addicts, they are regular people like you and me that unfortunately due to the lack of jobs in the United States have lost their jobs or can’t find jobs and are forced to ask for help from the government. Do you really think a crack addict has the time to go to a welfare office to ask for assistance? You are more likely to find them breaking into a house to steal something to trade for a fix. There is something HUGE that has to be done about the welfare crisis but drug testing is not the solution.

  29. KP September 5, 2012

    Honestly, it sickens me to think that society continually lowers itself and it’s standards. It amounts to people not being able to be trusted. If you apply for welfare, you should use it for what it’s intended…as a supplement program to get you through a rough spot, not as a means of income for the rest of your life. Yes they should be drug tested and if there are ways to “BEAT” it, then they should come up with better drug testing methods. Your right maybe every person receiving federal/state tax dollars should be tested and not just welfare recipients put inside of the box. Doing drugs is not okay…it’s an excuse to escape your sad life….Yes, SAD!

    Comments to our military telling them that they join because they are stupid and can’t find another path in life….really???? There are doctors, nurses, lawyers, presidents, pilots….how stupid are they….that are in our military or were. They defend our country and keep us free. You are the reason that our veterans were treated so badly after Vietnam war, attitudes like that! Shame on you.

    Thank you for supporting our country. I AM PROUD OF YOU!

  30. Jen September 9, 2012

    This will NEVER work. Drug testing those that receive welfare is not the answer to fix the problem. You think we as taxpayers pay too much now? The number stated that receive any portion of their support from from welfare assistance–including food stamps– is 29,900,000 or roughly 8% of the total population in the United States. You think that the welfare department in each state has the time or resources to monitor random drug testing for that many people!? Have any of you recently visited a welfare office? Well I know that the one around me (san diego, ca) has a line wrapped around the building starting at 6am every.single.morning. So you answer, yes, and if we drug test then say 1/2 those people will be disqualified from receiving benefits. So is the drug testing going to be one strike your out? out for a year? five years? Are these “drug addicts” going to be given drug counseling and put through an addiction program? Or are they just done? Left out on the streets with zero assistance. This drug testing idea sounds great in theory but the aftermath will be way more damaging to our society. I feel that people cut off financially from the government will become more desperate and our crime rate will increase, etc etc. The list goes on… you get the point. And for the record, this is coming from a home where both my husband and I work and pay our generous share of taxes,

  31. Ashley September 20, 2012

    I understand everything that you guys are say, but I am apart of that poor working class that can not get food assistance for me and my child because I make to much. Goverment assistance is based on the pay of the unemployed and if we could knock the drug users of the welfare list the people like me who work full-time and are actually trying to better themselves can get a lil help out here. So, if drug testing them is invading their privacy then so be it.

  32. MSE October 24, 2012

    Being a Soldier and being required to take random drug tests isn’t a bad thing…think about it for a second..would you REALLY trust a guy w/ a .50 caliber machine gun (not a sniper rifle) or a MK19 grenade launching weapon that you knew had a drug problem? Or the guy the handles peoples finances or works on NBC masks? No…you wouldn’t trust him or her. Some companies outside of the Military DO conduct random drug testing..it keeps people honest and out of trouble and lets the employing company know that, that is one less issue they have to worry about within the offices. Drug testing for welfare should be implemented..if you don’t take illegal drugs than what’s the problem? You’d be taking a drug test to get hired at any other company anyway?! There IS a bad stigma on put on those who are on welfare, however, if the ones who are taking illegal drugs get weeded out of the welfare system than eventually that bad stigma will be lifted away. Same as in the Military..there’s a bad stigma put on going to the clinic or DR for some sort of injury..Why? Because there are some Soldiers that fake injuries simply to get out of working. Therefore, making others pick up their slack which isn’t fair to those already doing their job. The “bad seeds” end up getting weeded out..same should apply for welfare.

  33. Courtney November 1, 2012

    What’s the big deal about this? If the welfare recipients aren’t using illegal drugs, they have nothing to worry about. Why is it that it is legal and mandatory that most companies are allowed to drug test their employees but the state cannot drug test the people who are receiving free money. I live in Texas and feel that it should be legalized here as well. If someone pops on a drug test, then don’t give them the money the rest of America is working hard to provide. If they pop for prescription drugs, showing a pill bottle with their name on it should be sufficient. Pill bottles don’t show the condition they have, just the medication they are receiving which also showed up in the drug test to begin with. Military…I love the military. My husband is actually retired Army. He was drug tested regularly as well. My husband and I have three children and a niece that we are having to raise. He is working while I finish my degree. We are trying to better ourselves, but between the car payments, vehicle and health insurance, his child support for his other daughter, and everday bills, we sometimes find it hard to make ends meet. The medicaid and food stamp office where we live told us we make $29 a month to much for even a one time help. What is wrong with this picture? We are trying to better ourselves and our childrens lives and we aren’t given any help. If we can do it, why can’t others? Here’s a thought…A mom has seven kids and no husband. She can’t do it on her own. Ok, so stop having babies the rest of the country is going to have to support. If she isn’t using illegal drugs, give her assistance she needs to raise those babies. Easy as that. If she doesn’t pass a drug test and can’t support her kids, give them to someone who can. It happens every day. Sadly enough, many of the welfare recipients I know are drug addicts(that’s why I am raising my niece). This is not an issue of invasion of privacy, this is an issue of druggies not wanting to lose the free money.

  34. R.M. November 1, 2012

    The problem is that too many people think that someone owes them something. There is NO problem with drug testing in order to receive benefits. the argument over this is just crazy. I work two jobs, go to school full-time and have made my own way in the world. Like you are supposed to do. People who sell their food stamps, obviously do not need them in the first place. Second, If drug testing for benefits is an “invasion of privacy,” then so is drug testing for a job. There is no difference in the principle, but there is a difference in NEEDING the assistance and ABUSING the system. Hell, maybe if the govt paid for my rent, supplied me a free phone, AND gave me food money so I wouldn’t have to work or even try to make it in this world, I’d be all down for the cause. But, some people don’t have it like that.

  35. Tonya November 11, 2012

    I know quite a few people on welfare. I agree with drug testing for welfare. atleast 20 people I know on welfare spend their money on drugs, alcohol and brand name clothes that I cant afford working 40 hours a week. Yet I am paying for them to buy this stuff. I was once told, hey you know you bought me this bottle (of liquor), because you pay taxes. lets also look at the people that dont want the one kid they have, but continue to have more because they get more money and assistance from the state. They dress their kids in clothes from goodwill and dress themselves in coogi, baby phat and apple bottom. They have louis vuittan purses and coach bags. I have one nice purse that I bought before I had my daughter and started receiving help from the state. I receive food stamps and medical assistance. I can guarantee i would take a drug test in a heartbeat! I need the help, but there are too many people that take the help and waste my money!

  36. Ken November 29, 2012

    People who support their habit from the backs of hard working men and women like our mothers, fathers and even grandparents need to be tested. If you arent on drugs then your chances of getting off your ass and getting a job greatly increase no science needed to prove that. All in all if you dont do drugs then you shouldnt worry. If you do and your supposed to be feeding your family then you should get your shit straight. We pay a shit ton in taxes and gas prices are climbing at least by drug testing then we can only hope that our taxes are going to a greater cause.

  37. Mr Bill December 20, 2012

    I couldn’t review all the comments, but they are all over the place. Really, getting into an argument over servicemen and their value to the country.

    The whole discourse is disheartening. Jen’s comment on Sept 9th shows logic and reason. Almost all of the rest show unadulterated emotionalism, unfounded in any facts. As Jen says, “let’s drug test the welfare recipients, because I don’t want my tax dollars used to pay for their habit.” Well, wake up and smell the roses…to put these programs into operation will suck up more of your tax dollars, and the % of recipients that will be caught and kicked off the dole is miniscule compared to the money private companies will pocket of your tax dollars to administer a program that (apparently) makes the populace happy, but in the end will just siphon more money from their pockets. If you have statistics to demonstrate the program will be cost effective and save tax dollars, then please show us all. I don’t want to pay for a welfare recipient who is going to use the money for drugs, but I don’t want to pay more money into the same program for drug testing with no positive reductions in payments vs expenses.

  38. Ash December 28, 2012

    Drugs are one of the nations biggest habits!! I think its the right thing for taxpayers by people getting help should get tested!! I know i don’s want my money to be spent on drugs!! And another thing it’s for the kids so why in the world would you want to spend the money to help your children to be spent on drugs??

  39. Alex March 17, 2013

    I cant belive people complain about where your tax money is going. Really who cares. Your going to have to pay it no matter what. It doesnt matter if politicias are using for booze, prostitutes, mistresses, drugs. Or if it used for welfare. Who cares, stop worrying over those things that are abosulutely impossible to change. It a waste of your life.
    This is a website all about addiction and all you people sound like those folk that have nooo idea about the disease of addiction.
    So pathetic.
    The system needs to be helping people to get better from whatever, drugs or ilness or mental health so they can go back to work. The longer they are on welfare the harder it is going to be to get off. Simple. Help them, they will get back to work. When there is no help, and they obviously cant afford it, how are they going to get better and get back to work.
    Some drug addicts want to get better, but mostly they dont because they are an addict they dont see a way out. Doesnt mean they wouldnt try if the help was offered and or if there were a reason or consequence.

  40. ries April 29, 2013

    why are people against this? it seems to me the only poeple that would appose it are welfare recipients. if they dont do drugs than they dont have to worry.

  41. moni May 6, 2013

    CUT ALL WELFARE PROGRAMS!!! I know I’m tired of working and seeing my taxes pay for those who don’t. Get a job and than you can have a say, until than, you don’t have a right to complain about requirements for free money. The tax payers should decide the requirements for you to receive their money!

  42. Jason May 6, 2013

    Please quit making laws against people. Soon every freedom people have will be gone.

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