Have you ever flushed thousands of dollars down the toilet? Ohio officials are considering yet another policy mandating drug testing — this time for unemployment recipients (“Drug tests for jobless benefits tricky,” Columbus Dispatch, October 27, 2011). Other proposed legislation would drug test anyone who receives government aid. Mandatory drug testing policies are simply a waste of taxpayer money, and do nothing to help people fight addiction.
The fact that the director of Job and Family Services is even considering such a plan is surprising. Being poor is not a crime. Some people fall on hard times, others are pushed, but all are trying to climb out. We should be helping them, not throwing taxpayer money behind baseless stereotypes.
Growing up my mother and I were on welfare. She worked as hard as humanly possible to raise me by herself and she still needed help. Welfare kept a roof over our heads and food on our plates. Before you stereotype, think of the thousands of other Ohioans just like my mother. Drug testing these innocent people to weed out a small minority of drug users is unfair and a taxpayer funded war on the poor that likely violates the constitution.
The poor make an easy target. Just remember, someday the target may be you.
Drug Policy Letter to the Editor