Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Surprise! Welfare drug testing is a waste of time and money

Posted By on Wed, Aug 17, 2016 at 3:20 PM

click to enlarge aacf-logo-sticky.png
Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families reports the not surprising results of a pilot program from the Arkansas legislature to drug-test recipients of certain welfare payments — temporary assistance to needy families.

It's been a waste of time and money. There was one positive drug testout of 800 applicants for the assistance. Four others were denied benefits for refusing to take the test. At the four-month rate, that means perhaps 15 people will lose benefits (not necessarily for drug use remember, perhaps only on principle) in a year. The testing program costs roughly $100,000.

CLARIFICATION: Not all recipients are tested, only those who answer questions in a way that suggests a test is in order. 

AACF comments:

Here’s a short list of things more likely to happen than an Arkansas welfare recipient testing positive for drugs (the odds of our welfare recipients testing positive are 1 out of 800):

You are more likely to be born with extra fingers or toes (1 in 500)
You are more (much more) likely to be audited (1 in 119)
You are more likely to catch a ball if you’re at a major league baseball game (1 in 570).

This drug screening program is a solution looking for a problem. There are still plenty of real problems in Arkansas. For example, Arkansas kids are very likely to grow up in poverty (1 in 4 kids do) or drop out of school (20 percent of students in Arkansas high schools don’t graduate on time). Perhaps we should focus on these issues instead.
Well, sure. But nothing says loving GOP-style better than spreading a little Big Brotherism and punishment around on the lucky ducks of the underclass.

I wonder if you'd get a 1 in 800 positive on drug-testing of legislators.
Favorite

Comments (10)

Showing 1-10 of 10

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-10 of 10

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • Transgender electrician may sue employer over her firing

    Federal Judge Susan Webber Wright has ruled that Patricia Dawson, a transgender woman, may pursue her lawsuit that she was wrongfully fired by her employer, H & H Electric, because of her sex.
    • Sep 16, 2015
  • The long and winding road: No exception yet for 30 Crossing

    The Arkansas highway department's representative on the Metroplan board of directors told the board today that the department is requesting an exception to the planning agency's cap on six lanes for its 30 Crossing project to widen Interstate 30 from six to 10 (and more) lanes.
    • Jun 29, 2016
  • 2nd guilty plea in bribery case over state mental health services

    Arkansas Business reports here on a federal court filing Wednesday that shows a second person has pleaded guilty to a bribery scheme to help a major contractor of the state Department of Human Services.
    • Sep 17, 2015

Most Shared

  • Home again

    The plan, formulated months ago, was this: Ellen and I were going to go to Washington for inauguration festivities, then fly out the morning after the balls for Panama City and a long planned cruise to begin with a Panama Canal passage.
  • Who needs courts?

    Not since the John Birch Society's "Impeach Earl Warren" billboards littered Southern roadsides after the Supreme Court's school-integration decision in 1954 has the American judicial system been under such siege, but who would have thought the trifling Arkansas legislature would lead the charge?
  • Bungling

    If the late, great Donald Westlake had written spy thrillers instead of crime capers, they'd read a lot like the opening weeks of the Trump administration.
  • UPDATE: Campus carry bill amended by Senate to require training

    The Senate this morning added an amendment to Rep. Charlie Collins campus carry bill that incorporates the effort denied in committee yesterday to require a 16-hour additional training period before university staff members with concealed carry permits may take the weapons on campus.
  • Director to resign from state court administrative office

    Supreme Court Chief Justice John Dan Kemp announced today the resignation of J.D. Gingerich, long-time director of the administrative office of the courts.

Visit Arkansas

New Crystal Bridges exhibit explores Mexican-American border

New Crystal Bridges exhibit explores Mexican-American border

Border Cantos is a timely, new and free exhibit now on view at Crystal Bridges.

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation