Drug-Testing Welfare Recipients

Recently, state legislators have been introducing legislation that require drug-testing people who receive public assistance, including welfare, unemployment, public housing and Medicaid. These bills are introduced by legislators based on the wrong belief that people who receive public assistance use drugs at a higher rate. This kind of drug testing is unconstitutional, scientifically unsound, fiscally irresponsible and one more way the "war on drugs" is an unfair war on America's most vulnerable populations.

Florida Cannot Drug Test People Simply Because They’re Poor

Florida Cannot Drug Test People Simply Because They’re Poor

By Jason Williamson at 3:30pm
Remember that amazing Daily Show segment a couple years ago in which a correspondent asked Florida Governor Rick Scott to pee into a cup? Governor Scott was dead set on forcing some of the state's poorest, most vulnerable citizens to submit to humiliating and expensive drug tests before they could receive public benefits. According to the Daily Show correspondent, it should follow then that lawmakers, including Governor Scott – who also cash checks that come from public funds – should receive the same treatment.
As The "Drug Testing Dragnet" Widens, The Poor Continue to be Swept In

As The "Drug Testing Dragnet" Widens, The Poor Continue to be Swept In

By Jason Williamson & Rebecca McCray, ACLU Criminal Law Reform Project at 2:05pm

Heads up: mandatory, suspicionless drug testing is not just about violating your Fourth Amendment rights anymore...

Editorial: Drug-Testing Welfare Applicants Nets Little

Editorial: Drug-Testing Welfare Applicants Nets Little

By Rachel Myers, ACLU at 4:00pm

An editorial in yesterday's USA Today takes a hard look at the recent push to drug-test applicants for public assistance across the country. The verdict? "Until states can come up with a smarter way to ferret out the abusers while protecting…

Drug-Testing Welfare Recipients: A Trend with No Traction

By Rachel Bloom, ACLU at 4:26pm

Two months into the state legislative session, not a single welfare drug testing bill has passed into law.

The Daily Show Tells Florida Legislators: "I Think I’m Gonna Need You to Pee into This Cup"

The Daily Show Tells Florida Legislators: "I Think I’m Gonna Need You to Pee into This Cup"

By Rachel Bloom, ACLU at 12:09pm

Last night the Daily Show featured ACLU client Luis Lebron, a Navy veteran who refused to take the drug test required by the State of Florida for welfare applicants.

Poor People Have Rights Too

Poor People Have Rights Too

By Rachel Bloom, ACLU at 4:05pm

Drug-testing those applying for public assistance is unconstitutional, shortsighted and will end up costing states more than any possible savings.

Told You So: Florida's New Drug Testing Policy Already Costing Taxpayers More

Told You So: Florida's New Drug Testing Policy Already Costing Taxpayers More

By Rachel Bloom, ACLU at 5:57pm

We've told you a few times about Florida's horrible new law that drug tests all families applying for cash benefit welfare applicants. The law, which went into effect July 1, makes applicants front the cost of the drug test and reimburses individuals…

Being Poor Is Not a Crime

Being Poor Is Not a Crime

By Rachel Bloom, ACLU at 1:25pm

June 2011 marks the 40th anniversary of President Richard Nixon's declaration of a "war on drugs" — a war that has cost roughly a trillion dollars, has produced little to no effect on the supply of or demand for drugs in the United…

Florida Law Punishes Poor People for Being Poor

By Rachel Bloom, ACLU at 2:05pm

During this legislative session, more than two dozen states have introduced legislation to drug test individuals receiving or applying for various forms of public assistance. And by public assistance I mean individuals applying for Temporary Assistance…

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