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House backs drug testing for welfare recipients

3 years ago May 16, 2012 May 16, 2012 Wednesday, May 16 2012 Wednesday, May 16, 2012 5:47:59 AM CDT in News
Source: Associated Press

BATON ROUGE - The Louisiana House has agreed to require drug testing of welfare recipients, amid charges from opponents that the mandate equals class warfare by targeting poor mothers.

The proposal was sent to the Senate with a 65-26 vote.

The bill has been repeatedly rejected in recent years.

Republican Rep. Sherman Mack's bill would require 20 percent of adults who receive aid through the Family Independence Temporary Assistance Program to be drug-tested. Anyone who tests positive would be required to receive drug treatment to continue getting welfare.

Supporters say they want to make sure welfare checks pay for family needs. Opponents say the proposal unfairly assumes poor mothers are more likely to be on drugs than others who receive taxpayer-funded aid.

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