In 2013, North Carolina legislators worked to approve a bill that would require drug testing and background checks for welfare applicants. This bill was passed but had many modifications before it was ready to be put in use. In 2015, the first drug test were administered for the Work First program. For the best drug rehab Greensboro NC services, contact Legacy Freedom.
According to ncleg.net, the bill states the following:
"AN ACT REQUIRING A COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL SERVICES (DSS) TO VERIFY WHETHER AN APPLICANT FOR OR RECIPIENT OF TEMPORARY ASSISTANCE FOR NEEDY FAMILIES (TANF) BENEFITS OR FOOD AND NUTRITION SERVICES (FNS) BENEFITS IS A FLEEING FELON OR A PROBATION OR PAROLE VIOLATOR, TO DIRECT INTERAGENCY COOPERATION AND INFORMATION SHARING IN ORDER TO VERIFY THE ELIGIBILITY STATUS OF AN APPLICANT OR RECIPIENT, TO DENY TANF OR FNS BENEFITS TO AN APPLICANT OR RECIPIENT WHO IS A FLEEING FELON OR A PROBATION OR PAROLE VIOLATOR, AND TO REQUIRE DRUG SCREENING AND TESTING FOR CERTAIN APPLICANTS AND RECIPIENTS OF WORK FIRST PROGRAM ASSISTANCE."
The bill states that only possible users are the ones that should be drug tested. Not everyone who applies for the Work First program will be tested. Those who look to be drug users or offer reasons for social workers to believe they're using drugs will be tested. Many believe this bill is not beneficial. Because of the cost for the drug testing, they believe it eliminates the need for weeding out certain individuals from receiving government assistance.
Below, will take a look at the numbers from 2015 and 2016 in terms of how many people were tested and how much it cost.
- Total Drug Testing Cost - $4,895
- Number of Applicants Recommended for Testing - 150
- Number of Recommended Applicants that Showed Up for Testing - 89
- Number of Recommended Applicants that Failed to Show Up for Testing - 61
- Number of Applicants that Tested Positive for Drugs - 21
A total number of 82 individuals lost their Work First program assistance due to either not showing up for drug testing or failing the drug test administered.
- Total Drug Testing Cost - $11,990
- Number of Applicants Recommended for Testing - 389
- Number of Recommended Applicants that Showed Up for Testing - 218
- Number of Recommended Applicants that Failed to Show Up for Testing - 171
- Number of Applicants that Tested Positive for Drugs - 42
A total number of 213 individuals lost their Work First program assistance due to either not showing up for drug testing or failing the drug test administered.
Tests costs $55 per individual. DHHS does not keep a record of how much money is being saved by individuals who've lost their assistance. However, it is assumed that each applicant would get more than $55 per month in assistance. That alone shows that money is being saved.
The controversy in whether or not this bill is acceptable and beneficial is still high. However, it is a step in the right direction to help encourage those addicted to drugs to seek help for recovery.
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