Oklahoma Welfare Drug Screening Finds Few Dopers

Last year, the Oklahoma legislature passed and Gov. Mary Fallin (R) signed into law a bill mandating drug screening for welfare applicants. The bill was designed to save the state money by weeding out drug users seeking Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) funds.

But the new law is finding few welfare drug users. According to the state Department of Human Services (DHS), in the first four months that the law was in effect, some 1,300 people underwent screening to see if there was reasonable suspicion they were using drugs, but only 29 were denied benefits. That is about 2.2% of those screened, a drug use level well below the national average of about 8%.

Some 340 people were deemed by the screening process to be likely drug users, but again, only 29 of them were denied benefits. That is closer to the 8% national average, but also shows that more than 90% of those determined by screening to be likely drug users were not.

And of those 29 people denied benefits, only 16 actually failed a drug test. Thirteen others simply refused to comply with demands for additional testing.

The testing and screening procedures have cost the state $74,000, according to DHS. According to the Okahoma TANF Program, the average TANF benefit is $3,500 a year, meaning at most, the state will have saved about $25,000 net through the drug testing program -- but only if all 29 people are denied benefits for an entire year. The law allows people denied benefits to seek them again after six months if they have completed drug treatment.

There are no figures available on how long those 29 people were denied benefits, but at best, the Oklahoma welfare drug testing programs appears to be a wash, at least when it comes to saving the state money. It's not so easy to put a dollar value on demonizing poor people as drug addicts or humiliating them by forcing them to undergo drug testing to obtain benefits.

Oklahoma City, OK
United States
Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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Crimes Against Humanity.

La guerre de la drogue crée déjà une classe sous alors une telle loi oblige les gens encore plus bas dans la pauvreté absolue et de désespoir. Ces lois discriminatoires  gens à travers le traumatisme psychologique. La guerre contre la drogue est une attaque contre les personnes les plus pauvres de la communauté. Les problèmes économiques auxquels nous sommes confrontés sont portées sur nous par les personnes en charge et pourtant ils ont mis le fardeau de la culpabilité de ceux de la communauté moins capables de se défendre.

As if those seeking such help could AFFORD to buy illicit drugs

Dickens must be laughing his arse off in the Afterlife; in this, our latest example of our treatment of the poor, we've become a caricature of his novels.

Most seeking such assistance were already on the knife's-edge of penury...before the drug-money-laundering banksters pushed them - and the rest of us - over the economic cliff.

Given the historical connection between cocaine-fueled hubris of the top members of the world economic system and their disastrous decisions affecting the entire Developed and Developing World, I'd sooner piss-test banksters and their political friends (like Obama) than I would some down-on-his-luck former factory worker.

wtf?

 Would say to everyone, the testing companies are owned by who? Have found that politicians often have stock and therefore an interest in requiring everyone to take drug tests...it makes their pockets  and bank accounts grow. and ...would also note drug testing commonly prescribed  gives false positives, tests say you are using opiates when you are only eating poppyseed bagels... and no drug test can say you are under the influence of marijuana, when it is picking up exposure or use from two weeks or sometimes even a month ago...maybe longer.(Hard drugs are flushed from system in hours or a day or two). Drug tests are the biggest scam government agencys have bought into...Someone i know very well recently experienced screwups at the lab that caused them to test  3 times!!! all at the expense of the state... 1st was not enough of a sample, second was attendant leaving area, causing sample to cool as it sat on the cement floor for over 20 minutes , third was after 2 full bottles of water...and supposedly a valid test? state pays for 3 tests,all on same day,  comes out of our taxes, even though the essentials like food and medicare are cut...STUPID drug policys costs tax payers millions of dollars, while investors are smiling...

Drug Testing is an Obedience Test

Random drug testing rarely detects anything but marijuana, since most other drugs metabolize and are gone in about three days.  Protecting employee health is not the concern of those who test employees, otherwise they would test for nicotine consumption or lung performance, too much trans-fat in one’s diet, liver cirrhosis, and other health problems.  After 6000+ years of use, marijuana has demonstrated no health hazards.  So what’s the concern about pot, if not a medical one?

Marijuana gets people high, and corrupt ideologues exist who don’t like people with altered states of consciousness.  They don’t like civilian practices and traditions they can’t control, or from which they cannot extract a profit. 

In a country founded by various religious sects, a puritanical meme hides within the judicial system like an HIV virus well hidden inside a nerve cell.  The fear that someone, somewhere, somehow, might be having a good time; or educating themselves spiritually without the intervention of a priesthood, is taboo.  Religions like Catholicism and Puritanism not only didn’t want people experimenting with or using strange medicinal plants, they didn’t want people thinking for themselves, which is something marijuana and other mind transformers like psychedelics are famous for causing.  

Stamping out the plague of prohibitionism means finding its hiding places and applying an effective vaccine.  Crimes against humanity, like those outlined by Human Rights Watch that address the drug laws, never originate from the ground up.  Drug prohibition couldn’t exist without a powerful government setting the stage and prepping its citizens for mass stigmatization and persecution of fellow citizens.  No one would care about pot were it not for the government and its cast of puritanical clowns.  Prohibition is a disinformation campaign designed to ruin people’s lives, and to do so in ways contrary to the guarantees put forth by the Constitution and Bill of Rights.

So what we have with marijuana is a line drawn in the sand.  The line stands for blind obedience, conformity, acquiescence to stupidity, and fraud, little else.  Dare to cross the arbitrary line, get caught doing it, and as a nonconformist or rebel you’re designated a second-class citizen for life.  Prohibition is the ultimate tyranny.  It must be stopped.

Drug testing

Thank you, Giordano! Well written.

Wow!

That puts a point on the matter better than I've heard for a long time. The only thing I might add is that prohibition may not be the ultimate tyranny, as I can imagine worse, but it certainly is one of the most insidious, convincing the majority that any interest in using such drugs is folly and that the law is meant to protect them from harm. The road to hell is paved with good intentions.

drug testing welfare recipients

I think they will have a better outcome if they do visual drug testing. These people are obviously using their kids urine. Or blood testing. There's so many ways to pass a ua it's ridiculous. Spinal taps show everything even though I know our state can't pay for it. And I think that if you fail your testing you should have to pay out of your own pocket cause they obviously make money for drugs. That would save some money too. They just need to build a lab for drug testing in the DHS office.

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