Show MoreThere is an ongoing debate over whether or not welfare recipients should be drug tested to receive the benefits. Both sides of the argument have merit. Those who oppose the idea of drug testing say that it is unconstitutional and violates the Fourth Amendment. Furthermore, they claim that this law stereotypes and discriminates against those from low socioeconomic demographics, implying that because they are poor, they must be drug addicts. However, those who support the law note that its intended purpose is to ensure that taxpayer money is not being squandered on people who only plan to abuse this assistance. Only nine states so far have instituted drug testing of candidates for welfare assistance. This drug testing has proven to be…show more content…
In addition to the requirement for employment as a condition for a continuance of benefits, “states have proposed drug testing of applicants and recipients of public welfare benefits since federal welfare reform in 1996” (Finzel, 2014). While some states test recipients based upon suspicion of drug use, others choose to test all applicants.
In 1999, Michigan was the first state to implement a suspicionless drug testing policy as a condition for receiving welfare benefits. A district court struck down the policy on the Fourth Amendment grounds, and the Sixth Circuit court ultimately divided, upholding the district court’s injunction and putting a temporary stop to the policy. However, the constitutional issues remain undecided. (Goetzl, 2013, p. 1539)
Currently, politicians from twenty-four states have proposed legislation to institute drug testing as a condition for welfare determination, but only nine have formally approved it. Those states are: Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Missouri, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Utah (Finzel, 2014).
Supporters of this and similar legislation have proposed that applicants for welfare pay for the drug testing themselves. If test results are negative for drug use, the welfare applicant is fully reimbursed. The cost for drug testing varies, generally ranging from $30 to $40. Proponents of drug testing further propose that making the applicants pay for their
Welfare System Severely Abused
Welfare system is a legal arrangement where a government of a given state plays a major role in provision of essential services like shelter, food, healthcare and education to its needy citizens. The welfare systems are based on the principle of public responsibility on equitable wealth distribution and equality of opportunities to citizens who are unable to afford minimal levels of quality and good life, through provision of universal education programs, health care and subsidised housing.
For instance, federal government passed a controversial law under the Social Security Act which aimed at; providing cash assistance to jobless single mothers, increase child care assistance, encourage welfare recipient to get decent jobs and lastly, setting out time limits on welfare payment to reduce poverty levels.
Abuse of welfare systems really hurts the hardworking tax payers since the funds to support welfare programs comes from the tax payers pockets. Currently, surveys and research shows that over thirty seven percent of welfare dependants or recipient severely abuse the systems through wrong use of welfare funds, for example buying alcohol, drugs, manicures, cigarettes, tattooing, saving food stamp money to buy expensive and luxurious items like iPhones and failure to use birth control methods by single mothers leading to high number of dependency to the welfare systems.
In most of the states, welfare systems are not used in the right manner they are intended to. Although the systems are meant to reduce the poverty level and at least assists individuals to get decent jobs , many recipients develops news ways every year to prolong their dependency in the system. Statistics show that women easily abuse the welfare system by simply having more children each year since this means that more money will come in their mails. Most of the recipients are able to work and earn their own money but they choose to be lazy and greedy since the welfare benefits seem better than working benefits.
In order to eradicate this problem of welfare system abuse the government ought to re-evaluate and enforce more accurate and efficient assistance systems by conducting educational programs to the citizens, providing better employment opportunities to the recipients, educating recipients on importance of using birth control methods, carrying out drug test on the recipients to identity those who abuse drug using the welfare funds and lastly, monitoring the level of dependency by examining number of years an individual depends on the welfare systems. With these reforms and strict regulation of welfare systems management, the vicious cycle of level of the welfare system abuse will gradually reduce.