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Welfare Reform - Research Paper Example

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Summary
As the United States continues to reel from the after effects of the 2008 George W. Bush mishandling of our economy, our government finds itself in the unenviable position of having to find the balance between fiscal responsibility and caring for its citizens in need…
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Welfare Reform
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Welfare Reform

Download file to see previous pages... For most of our jobless countrymen, welfare checks provide the means to continue to purchase life giving food as sustenance in their daily lives. However, the economic hardships that have befallen our local governments have forced its leaders to rethink and reform the local welfare laws in order to protect the neediest and deserving members of the state. This was done by multiple states in the guise of requiring all welfare participants to submit themselves to individual drug testing prior to their application for welfare. Although there have been some people caught as being positive for substance abuse in the past, this particular welfare reform has not been as successful as its implementing bodies hoped it would be. The failure of the drug testing law in relation to welfare privileges stem from the various complaints filed by different sectors of society against the law. These groups, such as the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) claim that the local law revisions are a violation of basic human rights and must therefore be declared null and void by the state courts. This paper aims to look into the validity of the legality of the claims by the various human rights organizations in an effort to prove the ill effectiveness of this particular law in relation to welfare reform. ...
at the time explained that (1999): The Fourth Amendment guarantees that no individual in this country can be subjected to a search by the government unless there is reasonable suspicion that they have committed some crime, Welfare recipients may be poor, but that's not a crime—not yet, anyway. The ACLU believes that by requiring mandatory drug testing for welfare recipients, those wishing to avail of the government aid will have been branded by society in a negative manner before they have even been proven to have committed any offenses. The law simply has too many loop holes, in the opinion of the group, for it to become actually effective in preventing the use of tax payer dollars by drug addicts who happen to be a member of our society. In Michigan, they believed that this law would have been an effective deterrent towards drug abuse even though (1999): ... evidence from a 1996 federal study showing that "the percentage of welfare recipients using, abusing, or dependent on alcohol or drugs [is] relatively small and consistent with the general U.S. population and those not receiving welfare benefits... Due to the existing inconsistencies in the law, its implementation, and questionable effectiveness in deterring welfare recipients from participating in illegal drug activities, the law was eventually halted and has not been implemented since. Let us be clear though that this law has not become as widespread in implementation as the government had first hoped. This is because the 1996 Welfare Reform Act did not make it a mandatory prerequisite to receiving government aid. The ACLU claims that (ACLU, 2008): Before the Michigan policy was halted, only 10% of recipients tested positive for illicit drugs. Only 3% tested positive for hard drugs, such as cocaine and ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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