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Ohio


New proposal pushes to test Ohio welfare applicants for drugs
Republcian state Sen. Tim Schaffer of Lancaster says applicants would undergo a drug test if there's reasonable cause
by WKSU's ANDY CHOW


Reporter
Andy Chow
 
In The Region:
A state senator is reigniting his push to drug test applicants for Ohio’s welfare program known as Ohio Works First.

The bill, which is expected to be formally released today, would create a pilot program. Three counties would volunteer for the two-year period.

Sponsor Sen. Tim Schaffer of Lancaster says applicants would undergo a drug test if a reasonable cause is determined during a screening process. If that person tests positive, then he or she will go to a drug-treatment program and state assistance will continue to go to their families.
Proposal pushes for drug-testing welfare applicants

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“We cannot allow the cycle of drug-induced dependency to continue. This is drug induced-poverty and dependency. I think we all know pretty well, from media reports over the years, that this tends to perpetuate itself in our society. This legislation will help break that cycle.”

Opponents say the bill inappropriately targets low-income families and stereotypes them as drug users. They also contend that the $100,000 included in the bill would not be enough to cover drug treatment.
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