Texas Yet to Drug Test for Unemployment Benefits

Four years after Texas and other states approved drug testing for certain unemployment applicants, the state has yet to conduct one test.

Republicans blame the Obama administration for dragging its feet on the law, but even after the Department of Labor issued guidelines, Congressman Kevin Brady and others argue the parameters were too narrow.

“So narrow in fact, that states like Texas would be severely limited in their ability to successfully implement an employment insurance drug testing program,” Brady said from the House floor earlier this year.

The Texas Association of Business supports the law.

“In order to draw unemployment benefits a person has to be ready, willing and able to work, and that includes being drug free,” TAB member Pamela Bratton told The Texas Tribune.

However, Ed Sills at the Texas AFL-CIO calls the law unnecessary and a waste of taxpayer money.

“We see this as an assault to the vast majority of working people who are trying to get back on their feet and contribute to the economy again,” he said.

The Trump administration is expected to issue new guidelines next March.

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