Drug testing welfare recipients, take two

Rep. Melvin Henley pre-filed a bill today that would set up two pilot programs — one each in the eastern and western parts of the state — to require drug testing of public assistance recipients and require revocation of benefits from anyone who fails the test or refuses to take one.

The bill requires testing to be limited to cases in which officials have probable cause to believe an adult recipient is using illegal drugs. This provision had to be added to last year’s version to avoid prevent the bill from being found unconstitutional. He said back in June that he would file this bill.

This bill generated wide public support last session, only to be killed in the House. Figuring out some way to cut back on abuse of the welfare system is probably a good idea. Fiscally responsible legislators may want to weigh in on this one.


  1. So, if a person eats hemp breads, butter, pancakes, waffles, drinks hemp milk, or uses hemp body creams, lotions, fragrances, salves, balms and tests positive for THC, their welfare payments are going to be cut off?

    This is another bill based on ignorance. Why are politicians so hell-bent on walking into a dark tunnel of ignorance when there’s no light at the end of the tunnel?

    And this is from a legislator who has the requisite educational credentials to have looked into this matter. Rep. Henley’s home page cites the following educational credentials:

    “Murray State University, BS. Murray State University, MBA. University of Mississippi, PhD. US Chemical Society.”

  2. why is wanting to NOT pay for the habits of drug users ignorance? I have worked in law enforcement and you would be AMAZED at the number of drug users who are in line to get their money every month, whose numerous trips to the ER looking for drugs or trips to jail are paid for by you, whose children are supported by the state (who often have numerous special needs because the mother was on drugs while she was pregnant). While they spend time getting high, in jail,or in government funded rehabs the taxpayers are supporting them, their family members/friends are using the food stamps and SSI checks to do what they like. They sell the benefit cards to others to get money to get the drugs. Cut them off, make them accountable and responsible for themselves..stop enabling the abuse of taxpayer funds and government programs.

  3. Of approximately 130 species of hemp, only to contain the hallucinogenic cannabinoid delta-9-THC. These are not contained in hemp bread and other substances. Shall we extend testing to assay the hallucinogenic THC.
    Does anybody know how much those products cost in the first place??? If one can afford them then one must not necessarily require public assistance.

  4. Intelligent Debate Please says:

    I believe that the $1.2 million dollars required to implement this Inquisition would be better spent on making investments in the recipients who are successfully completing the welfare to work requirements.

    You would also be AMAZED at the number of recipients who are successfully pursuing their education and completing employment requirements who suffer due to the slashing of program funds that were set up to assist these women.
    I am a former welfare recipient who will soon receive my Masters Degree in Public Administration. I would welcome the opportunity to have an intelligent debate on this matter rather than one that is based on faulty, narrowminded and discriminatory reasoning.