In North Carolina, at the beginning of this year, several thousand welfare applicants were screened for drugs. The screening started last year in August. Of those screened, 89 were ordered to take a drug test. 21 of them tested positive. They were barred from the state’s welfare program and forced to pay the $55 testing fee. An additional 70 applicants who were told to take the test never showed up for their appointment and consequently never got benefits.
Now, all welfare recipients must be tested for drugs. The law requiring drug testing of Work First recipients suspected of drug use was signed into law in 2013 despite Republican Governor Pat McCrory’s veto — his first such action. The drug testing requirement was only levied on the Work First program, not all state welfare programs. I think it is a fantastic move and it looks to work quite well. I also think it should be applied to ALL state welfare programs across the board.
From American News:
Recently, North Carolina implemented requirements that all welfare recipients be drug tested. They decided to release those results after NC Governor Pat McCrory vetoed a bill to test for drug abuse.
In the first round of drug testing on 89 of the 7,600 people applying for the Work First program were tested for drugs. Of those tested, 21 were found to have illegal drugs in their system.
Those who were found positive were disqualified from receiving benefits, and were required to pay the $55 fee for the drug test—as well as any drug treatment involved.
The Work First program is meant to help low-income families get by. This is to ensure that children get enough to eat specifically. Adults in the program must meet work participation requirements. The law went into effect in 2015.
The results of this program are now being made available. Of 7,600 welfare applicants, 2% were referred for drug testing. Almost one quarter of those tested failed – showing they had illegal drugs in their systems. But this only amounted to .3% of the total applicants. Of those that tested positive, if they had children, their benefits were still paid. Personally, I think that is a mistake.
Critics say it is a waste of money. I strongly disagree with that claim. It weeds out drug users and shows that there are consequences for being a druggie. If you want to participate in the program, get clean first. Those that oppose this testing seem to me to be Progressive politicians. I think that people on welfare should have to perform some type of work for what they receive. Staying drug free is also common sense. Good for North Carolina and other states following suit.