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Drug Testing Welfare Recipients Essay

1375 words - 6 pages

Is it fair that in order to obtain a job, some people go through drug testing while drug and alcohol abusers receive free, no strings attached, financial assistance (see appendix A)? Food stamps and Medicaid are provided to low and no income Americans who would otherwise do without. According to heritage.org, a majority of the illegal drug use in American adults is tied to unemployed citizens. While there are many people who disagree with testing welfare recipients, the truth is that the pros greatly outweigh the cons. The long term improvements that drug testing will have on the country are substantial. The wellbeing and stability of America’s children, unemployment, fairness across the board for all Americans and the economy; all play substantial rolls in how drug testing welfare recipients is a positive move forward for each U.S. state.
As stated by childwelfare.gov, an estimated 9 percent of America’s children live in a household where alcohol or drugs are being abused by a parent. In another study from the Substance Abuse Policy Research Program (SAPRP), drug use and dependency is more commonly found among women who receive welfare assistance then women who do not. Taking these two studies in to consideration, the nation’s largest problem when concerning the welfare system is the children. Children often have a difficult time at school or with peers, but to add on the additional stress of a substance abusing parent (see appendix B), makes lasting effects on America’s youth. Furthermore, no child should have to deal with a parent or guardian abusing drugs and alcohol. Although some people claim that refusing families with children welfare assistance due to drug abuse is immoral, there are programs that will enable families to continue to receive assistance while that parent gets clean. For instance, after testing positive several states (ex. Kansas and California) require the person complete a substance abuse and treatment program, along with a program to help develop job skills as explained by the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL). Many people continue to be skeptical and express concern as the recipients who tested positive may not fulfill their obligations in getting treatment. Furthermore, the concern is directed to the wellbeing of the children of the recipients who do not fulfill program requirements. Thankfully, the NCSL also explains that those who are deemed ineligible for not completely the programs can “designate a protective payee to receive benefits on behalf of the child(ren)”(National Conference of State Legislatures, 2014). In summary, drug testing welfare recipients will enable families to do two things: feed their children and get help for the parent or guardian who is abusing substances.
Another issue that is greatly affected by the abused welfare programs is unemployment. The unemployment rate goes beyond the lack of available jobs in the U.S.; unemployment also falls back on the individuals without...

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