U.S. Senator, Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) is calling for a federal law requiring all welfare and unemployment recipients to undergo mandatory drug testing, in order to receive benefits. It may surprise you to know that I don't think this is such a bad idea.
OK... My inbox is still smoking from my last posting, so again, I ask you to chill out a minute.
First, I don't think a positive testing should mean an immediate denial or termination of benefits. However, those who do test positively should be made to undergo treatment in order to receive these benefits. Now, if these individuals continue to produce dirty samples, not only would I cut off their benefits, but I would also be in favor of jail time. We are after all talking about the use of illegal drugs here.
I've always said that while every effort should be made to help those who are in need, I have no tolerance for those who abuse the system, by using taxpayer generosity to purchase drugs.
Remember that individual states do have the right to enact these requirements. President Clinton signed this into law, as part of the welfare reform act of 1996. Don't be surprised if some states don't proceed in this direction. I don't, however, think there will be a big push for this in Minnesota.
But would it be so bad if there was?