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Drug tests for unemployment benefits approved in Texas

Discussion in 'BBS Hangout: Debate & Discussion' started by bobmarley, May 25, 2013.

  1. bobmarley

    bobmarley Contributing Member

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    Drug tests for unemployment benefits approved

    by MICHAEL BRICK / The Associated Press
    khou.com

    Posted on May 25, 2013 at 4:12 PM

    AUSTIN, Texas (AP) -- Workers who lose their jobs would have to clear a drug screening to qualify for unemployment compensation under a proposal approved by the Texas Legislature.

    Under current law, employers take out insurance policies to help laid-off workers survive on weekly payments of $62 to $440. Those who are fired for cause, including failing an employer-sponsored drug test, do not qualify.

    The changes approved Saturday would require laid-off workers to fill out state questionnaires. Answers considered suspicious would lead to drug tests. Workers who fail would lose their benefits.

    Republican Sen. Tommy Williams said the program will help maintain a competent workforce.

    Democrats have blocked a separate measure that would have required drug testing for welfare recipients. But the bill targeting unemployed workers will now go to the governor.

    link

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    So no mandatory testing, just if your questionnaire is questionable.

    I wonder what could make it questionable?
     
  2. CometsWin

    CometsWin Breaker Breaker One Nine

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    Republicans always passing that critically important legislation to rid society of all kinds of imaginary problems.
     
  3. ling ling

    ling ling Member

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    <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-partner="tweetdeck"><p>Best draft interview answers ever part 1: player, can you pass a drug test? [grabs table] TODAY?!?</p>&mdash; Daryl Morey (@dmorey) <a href="https://twitter.com/dmorey/status/337272714505121792">May 22, 2013</a></blockquote>
    <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
     
  4. Refman

    Refman Contributing Member

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    If people receiving government benefits using their money to buy drugs and then needing assistance to buy food is an imaginary problem, then passing this should be no big deal. A regulation that ends up impacting nobody (since it is imaginary) should be much ado about nothing and thus is nothing to get worked up over.
     
  5. CometsWin

    CometsWin Breaker Breaker One Nine

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    By all means pander to your base and solve as many imaginary problems as you like while real problems go without any attention. That's the new job description for a legislator these days.

    Btw, in this nefarious world of drug addicted unemployment recipients... what does a drug addict do when he has no money? Do you think these geniuses know the answer to that question?
     
    #5 CometsWin, May 26, 2013
    Last edited: May 26, 2013
    1 person likes this.
  6. fchowd0311

    fchowd0311 Contributing Member

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    What is the ultimate goal of this piece of legislation? Saving money, pure and simple. Yet, it as been proven in other states that have tried this measure that the costs of incorporating these tests exceeded the saved money from the select few that disqualified because of a failed test.
     
  7. Felixthecat

    Felixthecat Contributing Member

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    This is just going to end up costing more money. There are all kinds of ways around drug tests.
     
  8. txppratt

    txppratt Contributing Member

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    legalize legalize legalize
     
  9. Refman

    Refman Contributing Member

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    So the government should buy him drugs so he doesn't go knock over a liquor store? Interesting.

    You still haven't answered my contention that if the problem is really imaginary, that the legislation shouldn't be problematic.

    The cost of testing, however, is a valid point. I agree that the cost of regulation should not exceed the benefit of the regulation. I often wonder how the IRS audit group would do under such an analysis.
     
  10. apollo33

    apollo33 Member

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    I actually wonder what the actual stats are for how many of these people use unemployment money to buy drugs
     
  11. CometsWin

    CometsWin Breaker Breaker One Nine

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    No it's cause and effect, understanding the consequences of what you're doing. A drug addict who can't find work and has no money is going to steal to buy drugs. That's reality and the real effect of this law if there are any unemployed drug addicts receiving benefits. It's simplistic garbage to say well stealing is wrong and we're not making them steal when common sense dictates that's exactly what's going to happen with someone that has an addiction.

    If drug addicts were really your concern you would mandate drug rehab for unemployment recipients that test positive. THAT is something that addresses a problem. This law is just nonsense. It doesn't solve anything or address anything, all it does is pass the buck and the profits.
     
  12. Refman

    Refman Contributing Member

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    So you advocate paying people not to commit crimes. I get the logic in that, but I can't say that it hits me favorably.

    As for addiction, I completely understand what you are saying. For a long time, I have advocated not putting drug users in jail for possession and the like and instead getting them mandatory treatment.

    However, your entire premise is that this problem is imaginary. The implication of that statement is that there are not drug users receiving government benefits. If there were, the problem would be real and not imaginary. If the problem is imaginary, nobody would be effected by it and we are really just talking theoretically.
     
  13. IBTL

    IBTL Member

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    But I thought republicans were for less gubmint?

    :confused:

    Wouldn't take much more to screen all the members of texas gubmint and any CEO and presidents that are getting tax breaks. If the ceo comes back dirty then they lose their tax subsidies.
     
  14. Refman

    Refman Contributing Member

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    I think that is fair. I also think that the amount of tax breaks we give businesses is insane.
     
  15. bucket

    bucket Member

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    It would waste money. Florida implemented a similar requirement for welfare recipients, and they spent more on testing than they saved by disqualifying aid recipients.

    It would also inconvenience and humiliate unemployment recipients.

    As CometsWin pointed out, there would be other, arguably more severe, problems in the event that the program did end up disqualifying a lot of recipients.
     
  16. Nook

    Nook Member

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    I would like to know who is going to pay for all the testing? I constantly hear about budget cuts and avoiding government intervention... but I guess that is only the case when it fits their needs.
     
  17. Deckard

    Deckard Blade Runner
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    Refman, the powers that be will never agree to drug test themselves. They'd rather make life as miserable as possible for those on the margins of society. I'm going to give you a scenario, one probably far more common than you might imagine. Depressed, out of work person goes to the house of a friend to hang out, hoping to cheer himself up and forget, if only for a little while, the problems he faces. The friend has some pot and offers him some. The poor fellow partakes. Two weeks later, he's forced to take a drug test in order to get unemployment benefits, which aren't very generous in Texas, by the way, because he still hasn't been able to get a job, although he's looking. He fails the drug test, much to his astonishment, and is denied benefits that he otherwise qualifies for.

    There is something terribly wrong about a political party that shouts to the heavens about personal freedom, while doing everything it can to deny personal freedom to the less fortunate of this society. I think it is called hypocrisy.
     
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  18. Depressio

    Depressio Contributing Member

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    It's a waste of money for something that really isn't a problem. This "solution" costs more than it saves. Florida is an example that should be a deterrent:

    The people passing this sort of legislation probably call themselves fiscal hawks, despite all evidence pointing that this will cost the state money, not save some.
     
  19. thadeus

    thadeus Contributing Member

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    The most important thing is that this makes being poor more difficult. Those poors need to know how much smarter, harder working, and more blessed I am.
     
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  20. wekko368

    wekko368 Member

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    You're confusing "personal freedom" with "personal responsibility." You can do whatever you want, but realize that every action has a consequence, and if you're going to take that action, you should be ready to face the consequence.

    In your scenario, the unemployed worker knows that a clean drug test is a prerequisite for unemployment benefits yet he still chooses to get stoned. Are we supposed to sympathize with him b/c he didn't qualify for unemployment benefits?
     

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