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West Virginia House Approves Drug Testing Of Welfare Recipients

March 10th, 2016 by WCBC Radio

The West Virginia state House of Delegates approved a bill Wednesday that would require drug testing of welfare recipients. SB 6, also known as the "Welfare Drug Testing Act" calls for a three-year pilot program to screen TANF applicants where there is a "reasonable suspicion" they may be using drugs. The bill had already passed with a 32 to 2 vote in the Senate.

In the even that an applicant fails the drug test on a first offense, he or she will maintain their benefits, but will be required to enroll in a drug treatment program and a job training program. On a second offense, the applicant has the potential to lose their benefits for up to 12 months while completing the same programs. For a third offense the bill calls for a loss of benefits for life.

The West Virginia DHHR will handle drug treatment programs for those that fail the test.

Thirteen states currently have legislation requiring some form of drug testing for welfare recipients.

The Senate will need to consider the changes made in the House before the bill heads to Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin's desk…

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