WUFT News

Federal appeals court rules to keep ban on welfare drug testing

By on February 26th, 2013

The 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta upheld a ban on welfare drug testing Tuesday.

In 2011, Florida Gov. Rick Scott and the Florida Legislature instituted a program that required Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) applicants to submit to drug testing. The measure was later challenged and banned in a lower court when the American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit.

TANF is a block grant program that helps move recipients into work and turn welfare into a program of temporary assistance, according to its website.

Scott said the decision was “disturbing” and that he would appeal the decision to the Supreme Court, according to a press release from The News Service of Florida.

The federal appeals court ruled that the state did not show a “special need” to drug test TANF applicants because there was no evidence to warrant the law.

“As the district court found, the state failed to offer any factual support or to present any empirical evidence of a ‘concrete danger’ of illegal drug use within Florida’s TANF population,” the press release said.

Baylor Johnson, American Civil Liberties Union of Florida Spokesman , said Tuesday’s decision was, “a big win for the 4th Amendment rights of all Floridians, not just applicants.”

If Scott pursues an appeal to the Supreme Court, Johnson said the ACLU of Florida is prepared to continue to challenge the measure.

Johnson said he believes it’s wrong to “treat an entire group of people like criminals just because they’re poor.”


This entry was posted in Florida and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
 

More Stories in Florida

Program Gives Foster Youths Chance For More Normal Life

A recent pilot program is making it easier for young people in foster care to earn a driver’s license and insurance for them to achieve a more normal life.


Police Identify Shooter as FSU Alumnus

The gunman who shot three people at Florida State University’s library early Thursday before being killed by police was a lawyer who graduated from the school, a law enforcement official told The Associated Press.


Undated arrest photo of Chadwick Banks.

Chadwick Banks Executed By Lethal Injection For Double-Murder

Chadwick Banks became the 20th person executed under Gov. Rick Scott on Thursday. The 43-year-old was put to death after being convicted in the 1992 slaying of his wife, Cassandra Banks, as well as the rape and murder of his 10-year-old stepdaughter, Melody Cooper. Eighty-nine people have been put to death in Florida since executions resumed in the state in 1979.


Pastor Zach Zehnder of theCross Church in Mount Dora speaks to the crowd in an attempt to break the Guinness World Record for world’s longest speech marathon. Zehnder ultimately spoke for more than 53 hours.

Mount Dora Pastor Attempts To Break Guinness World Record For Longest Speech

A Mount Dora pastor may have broken the Guinness World Record for the Longest Speech Marathon. The speech, which lasted over 53 hours, was used to raise money for a local cause.


(From left) Mitch Holeve celebrates Garrett "G-Money" Holeve's victory against David "Cerebral Assassin" on Saturday night. G-Money won by submission.

MMA Fighter G-Money Victorious Over Cerebral Assassin

Mixed martial artists Garrett “G-Money” Holeve and David “Cerebral Assasin” Steffan fought on Saturday in Sullivan, Missouri. G-Money defeated his opponent in their much anticipated bout by submission in the second round.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Day Sponsorship Payments
Underwriting Payments