DRUG TESTING FOR FLORIDA WELFARE RECIPIENTS DEFEATED – A district judge has denied Florida’s request for mandatory drug testing on welfare applicants and recipients already in the system, saying it is unconstitutional.
Read full story … Miami Herald
Meebal.com Reader Dee Says…
Where is there any accountability for those who receive welfare? There is none and it is time for our governments, whether on the state or federal level to start taking stock of just how much is going out in welfare benefits and how they are being used. In any home across America where there is a working head of household, there is accountability for how and where the money is spent, and yet this is not true in households that receive government benefits.
As a taxpayer, I would like to know that the money being taken from our family’s paycheck is being used to make someone else’s life better, not helping them to buy extras, live a lifestyle higher than ours or to buy drugs.
I don’t understand how this can be an unreasonable and unconstitutional request since essentially the government is taking money out of every working person’s pocket and handing it over to someone just because they filled out a form online.
The purpose of the testing is not to identify drug users to arrest them, but to grant a small measure of security that taxpayer money… I mean government money is being used to meet a need, not to buy illegal drugs or to support a drug habit.
At present, there are no benefits allotted for buying street drugs and until the time comes when that is the case, it is currently a violation to use any of the benefits given to gain illegal drugs, punishable with jail time and a fine. Of course there are other ways to get drugs than to sell government benefits, but the fact remains that persons reselling their benefits typically use the money for drugs.
Welfare is meant to help out, not build a lifestyle and was meant to be temporary; yet today, there are thousands who have made a living on the system raising families and creating a second generation of entitlement children.
Does anyone think that only drug addicts and dealers are on government assistance or that once someone is on welfare that they will begin using or selling drugs? Of course not, that stereotype no longer applies today, although in the past it was not unusual for those on welfare to be abusers of drugs or alcohol and involved in crime.
In fact, twenty years ago or more the majority of people on assistance were existing on levels of poverty that would shock most of us and the line between the economies of the poor working class and those on welfare was clearly evident.
Today you would be hard pressed to identify who is on welfare. With the multitude of benefits available, the rounded life experienced by the “seasoned taker” rivals the average working class family. In it’s effort to make those on welfare less “emotionally stigmatized” the government has sought to introduce programs to cover every area of life and need.
With all the programs available and so many ways to apply, there is no feasible way to keep track of how many programs any one family is enrolled in and often, with benefits overlapping, families do apply and are enrolled in as many as possible.
For instance a family may apply for food stamps, medical and some cash assistance. This covers their basic needs when they discover that they are also eligible for housing assistance and of course help with utilities.
Shortly thereafter they find they are pregnant and now are eligible for the special WIC program that will cover both mother and child until the child reaches the age of five. All other benefits must also increase as the family size increases and once WIC runs out, there are school programs that will provide breakfast and a hot lunch. Oh, and I forgot to mention the free pre-school program.
Let’s add babysitting services in case mom or dad decide to go back to school (which can also be at least partially financed) and of course the before and after school childcare for when it is inconvenient for anyone to pick up Junior because of scheduling conflicts.
What began as a social program to lend a helping hand has turned into a “SugarDaddy” program that simply recycles an entitlement attitude with no accountability. The bigger question that needs answered is: Are we winning the war on poverty and clearly the answer is no. Instead we are creating a new class of poverty; those from the working sector.
Many working families cannot afford much of what the public feels are necessities and either does without or goes into debt. In contrast, those on welfare are adept at finding assistance programs to live a lifestyle that while not grand, meets their needs and then some; all without leaving the comforts of home.
Another recent example of welfare abuse would be the news story of a young father with eight children, who was able to take flying lessons on the government dime supposedly because he would not be able to gain conventional employment because of his disability. That was over ten years ago and to date, he is still not employed but continues to enjoy occasionally renting a plane and “taking to the air for some much needed quiet time.” By the way, his family is also enrolled in every program available.
It is an assault on the lower middle class and upper lower class who go to work every day and struggle to make ends meet to continually be taxed to support those on assistance who no longer care to work since they already have a more lucrative job; working the system. A system that, need I remind you, affords them a lifestyle better than what the majority of taxpayers who provide these benefits enjoy.
Instead of the battle cry, “Tax the rich, make them pay!!” it is time for some serious welfare reform; but each time a proposal is brought forward, there is a government official who deems it unconstitutional.
With each state in charge of how benefits are handled, it just makes sense that they would know how best to tailor guidelines and restrictions based on the average recipient and the needs of the area, including if it was decided that drug testing would be beneficial.
Drug use and abuse is a real problem in the United States, and over the years more companies require drug testing before hiring a prospective employee with random drug testing done during employment. Schools conduct random locker searches for drugs and many sports and clubs within the schools also require their own drug testing for all participants.
With the war on drugs being waged in so many areas of our life, there is no reason why welfare recipients should be exempt.