Published: Saturday, Aug. 4 2012 12:00 a.m. MDT
Florida tried drug testing welfare recipients. They found that the cost of the
program exceeded the savings. This editorial is right.
I would agree that on the surface it seems reasonable to test welfare
recipients.But, one would hope that when studied further, it would
be concluded that it was not a cost effective use of taxpayer funds, and that
the rate of drug use is on par with the general population.But, that
seldom happens. Another GOP pushed feel good solution looking to find a
problem.Oh for the days when common sense ruled.
This is just another of the usual left wing propaganda from Florez. As usual, he
is dead wrong.Welfare recipients must be tested to ensure that tax
dollars do not go towards facilitating crime and addiction. If people want to be
drug addicts, they must do so at their own expense.Florez and the
leftists want to take away personal responsibility from welfare recipients. This
sort of excusing is what has led to the drug epidemic in the first place.
Actions have consequences, and it is time for druggies to live with theirs.
People are unable to hold a job to support themselves for a reason. When they
ask the public to support them, the public has the right to know that the reason
those recipients cannot hold a job and support themselves is NOT self-inflicted
by taking drugs.Is the purpose of welfare just to send money to
people or is it to help those people learn how to become self-reliant?If drugs are a significant problem (and 10% drug usage seems to be a
significant problem), then help those who are on drugs get off drugs so that
they can work.
I'm okay with testing welfare recipients as long as we include bankers who
got bailouts. They're welfare recipients too. The mount that went to AIG
alone was six times more than we spend on welfare every year.
Well, if one is to use sound reasoning based on the information from the
article, those receiving welfare have the same instances of drug use as the
general population.So, it would be reasonable to conclude there are
other factors at play.But, at the end of the day, it is merely a
feel good solution, that costs more than it saves.So, by that logic,
one should test medicare and medicaid patients. And how about Social
Security?How about all govt employees? I noticed that
in Florida, Gov Scott declined to take a drug test. Isn't he receiving tax
People usually get welfare only because they have kids.Drug user
parents usually loose thier kids to the state because of thier addiction. So
while drug users are costing us a lot of money it's not the parents that
are trying to take care of thier kids that are the problem.If you
drug test and find a positive the kids will probably just be taken at great
expense - and they should be taken out of that invironment. But it doesn't
save any money.
Roland,AIG is not a bank, it is an insurance company. cost of
drug testing should not be the only consideration. It costs money top operate
the highway patrol. Does that mean we should shut it down?
Drug testing for welfare has proven to cost taxpayers more than the savings. In other words, a terrific waste of money.Which makes total
sense for the GOP to endorse it.They've never met a wasteful
and expensive program that they didn't like.
Welfare costs on the federal level is two times more than defense. What percent
of Utah's funds go to welfare? What is the purpose of welfare? Is it to
make people dependent on government or is it to help them become productive
members of society?Changing people's lives is not easy. It may
easily cost more to help people become productive than it costs just to let them
live off the dole. If we really care about people, we will help them become all
that they can be. We will not treat them as animals that we feed, clothe, and
house.Drugs are a major reason that people lose the ability to work.
If welfare recipients are on drugs, they either need to be helped to get off
those drugs or they need to be prosecuted for using drugs. Either way is
expensive. Only the very heartless would tell us that the worth of
a person is the cost which society pays to feed, clothe and house him.
A short search busted your claims.You have that backwards. Defense
is 24% of the federal budget and welfare is 12%. In the four months
that Florida's law was in place, the state drug tested 4,086 TANF
applicants. A mere 108 individuals tested positive. To put it another way, only
2.6 percent of applicants tested positive for illegal drugs — a rate more
than three times lower than the 8.13 percent of all Floridians, age 12 and up,
estimated by the federal government to use illegaldrugs. Time and
time again conservative facts and plans don't hold water.Since
the defense budget is about 1 trillion total, and the job so critical,
let's drug test the military and congress instead.
The US Government posted the following figures for 2011:Defense,
$750 billionHuman Services, $900 billionSocial
Security, $775 biliionFederal welfare is two times greater than
defense. I stand by my statement that the public in Utah has the right to know
if those who receive welfare are drug users. Training someone to work will not
work if that person's problem is drugs.Caging that person by
feeding him and housing him is NOT how we treat people.
@Roland KeyserThat's not accurate. The cost of the drug testing
program was around 60,000 while the savings from payments not given out was
around 100,000 leading to the net savings of 40,000 dollars. Of course
that's a pretty small amount, roughly equates to 2 cents per Floridian.
Members of the u. S. Armed Forces are subject to random drug testing. On any
given day you may be ordered to give a test sample and it is a punishable
offense not to comply.
The Left Lies! Test Em!
The human services budget is not all welfare. It includes lots of things
besides welfare. The stat previous noted that welfare is 12% and the military
budget is 24% is more accurate...
"Three years later, the Utah legislature passed HB155 requiring all welfare
applicants to be drug tested in order to receive assistance. Those that refuse
could be banned from receiving help."That actually is not
correct. The law only requires an applicant who otherwise qualifies for cash
assistance under Utah's Family Employment Program to complete a written
drug screening questionnaire, and if they fail, the screening and treatment
would be required. It isn't to toss those that need help off of welfare if
they have a drug problem. It is to help them get off of drugs. They are only
removed if the won't take the help.Did the author read the
Maybe we should have defined what the word "welfare" means before citing
statistics about federal welfare dollars.The Constitution allows
spending for "general welfare" but does not allow spending for
"private or personal welfare". An example of "general welfare"
is military spending. Military spending benefits the safety of the states
directly and the people indirectly. An example of "private or personal
welfare" is Human services. Human services benefit individuals directly and
the states indirectly.Any spending which benefits the individual
directly is welfare.Federal spending for individuals is two times
more than defense spending.People are important, but providing for
individual people is not the function of the federal government. That duty is
passed to the states or to the people themselves.That's what
John's article is all about. He does not want the State to check people
for illegal drug usage. The taxpayers who open their wallets to help with the
personal welfare of people in Utah will want to know that their generosity will
eventually get most people off welfare. Identifying drug users is step one of
rehabilitation. It cannot be ignored.
News flash: Poor people use the least amount of drugs. How you ask? They have
the least amount of money. Middle class is using the most drugs. There
wouldn't be any money in drugs if only poor people couldn't afford it.
John: I agree with your conclusion about not testing for drugs even though your
premises are flawed. Addicts know how to pass scheduled drug tests, and rarely
fail them. Random testing on such a population is not easy to administer. A
better solution is to simply add a work requirement/component for any recipient
of public money and this includes in my opinion subsidized health care through
CHIP or subsidized mandated insurance through the Affordable Healtcare Act. Let
the individual decide if the little amount received justifies continuing to take
the public assistance payments.
DeseretNews.com encourages a civil dialogue among its readers. We welcome your thoughtful comments.— About comments