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Federal Judge Blocks Florida's Welfare Drug Testing Law

Sam Sabzehzar 2011-10-27 0 comments

By Jorge Rivas  |  Published in ColorLines

After founding the company that received the contract to drug test welfare recipients, a Florida judge declared the mandatory test unconstitutional.

A Florida state law requiring welfare applicants to pass drug tests has been temporarily blocked by an Orlando federal judge who said it likely violates the Fourth Amendment’s ban on unreasonable searches and seizures

On May 31 of this year, Florida Tea Party Gov. Rick Scott enacted a law requiring all adult applicants for cash assistance from the state’s welfare system to pass a drug test before receiving any benefits.

Before signing the law, Scott made several references to people on welfare using drugs at a higher rate than the general population. Maria Kayanan, of the ACLU in Florida, called the law “patriarchal, racist and mean-spirited.”

According to Florida’s Department of Children and Families, only 32 applicants failed the test, while more than 7,000…

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