Thursday, March 31, 2011

Government employee and welfare recipient drug testing

Gov. Rick Scott signed an executive order Tuesday that will require random drug testing of many current state employees as well as pre-hire testing for applicants.

"Floridians deserve to know that those in public service, whose salaries are paid with taxpayer dollars, are part of a drug-free workplace," Scott said. "Just as it is appropriate to screen those seeking taxpayer assistance, it is also appropriate to screen government employees."

The reference to taxpayer assistance referred to a push by Scott and legislative Republicans to require those who apply for state benefits under the Temporary Assistance to Needy Families program to submit to a drug test before getting benefits. That proposal (SB 556) was approved unanimously Tuesday by the Senate Criminal Justice Committee. It has another stop before the Senate floor.

Democrats, liberals, "progressives" and the ACLU will all oppose these measures legislatively and in the courts.

Of course, the general public will overwhelmingly support drug testing of government employees and welfare recipients.

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