The Texas legislature recently passed and Gov. Perry signed a drug screening bill for some applicants seeking unemployment benefits. It is at least somewhat watered down from the original proposals, which would have required drug tests for all applicants. I offered a critical commentary on the bill in March on the DFW ALL blog.
My criticisms still stand, and even on Perry’s own terms, I don’t how how the bill would be helpful. The screenings take place when applicants first apply for benefits, and applicants would only be eligible for unemployment benefits if they hadn’t been fired for cause, which includes failing a company drug test, meaning that applicants eligible for benefits certainly aren’t lazy or unwilling to work, contrary Perry’s insinuation.