People seeking unemployment benefits or welfare would have to first pass a drug test under a proposal Sen. Orrin Hatch will try to add to legislation extending the social safety net during this time of economic turmoil.
Hatch, R-Utah, said his idea would help battle drug addiction and could reduce the nation’s debt. He will try to get the Senate to include his amendment to a $140 billion bill extending tax breaks and social programs this week.
“This amendment is a way to help people get off of drugs to become productive and healthy members of society, while ensuring that valuable taxpayer dollars aren’t wasted,” he said after announcing his amendment. “Too many Americans are locked into a life of a dangerous dependency not only on drugs, but the federal assistance that serves to enable their addiction.”