What happened in Indiana recently is being hailed by advocates as a success in the war against workplace drug use. But if you read the facts, you’ll see that clearly, statistically, this is not the case:
“About 98 percent of applicants for an Indiana job training program passed a drug test, which has cost the state about $45,000 so far. Despite the price tag, and the fact that only 13 people tested positive for drugs, state officials are describing the mandatory testing as a success.
The program was launched in part because some business owners complained that once hired, workers that had completed the state job training programs couldn’t pass the employer’s drug tests. “Business owners had questioned why drug users who would not be able to pass workplace drug screening were nonetheless allowed to participate in the federally funded job training program,” the state Workforce Development Commissioner Mark Everson told the Associated Press.
Of the 1,240 applicants tested in the five months after the program was introduced last year, 1,217 passed the test, the Department of Workforce Development told the AP. Thirteen people, or 1 percent, failed, three refused to take the test, and seven more samples were so diluted that they needed to be retested, the department said.
Applicants were tested for marijuana, cocaine, opiates, PCP, amphetamine and methamphetamine.”
If only one percent of all people are failing a drug test, even the most conservative (especially the most conservative) would have to agree that this is an enormous loss of state revenue on the backs of taxpayers. Those who need to pass a drug test to receive training are also not likely at all to be employees who would come to work under the influence, or those who are abusive to a substance like marijuana especially.
To pass a drug test in order to begin training for a job seems somewhat cumbersome in a job economy where 11% unemployment is not a rare scenario across the United States. As a tax payer, would you rather have to foot the bill knowing someone is 99% sure to pass a drug test or would you rather pay for their state-funded cash assistance and food stamps? We want to hear what you have to say. Leave your comment below.