Home > Drug Testing > Maine Requiring Drug Testing for Welfare Recipients

Maine Requiring Drug Testing for Welfare Recipients

Some Maine residents are now subject to drug testing, thanks to Republican Governor Paul LePage’s decision to implement drug testing for certain welfare recipients.

Welfare reform is at the center of LePage’s campaign for re-election, and he hopes the regulation his administration has unveiled will instill more self-sufficiency among its citizens.

ARCpoint Labs of Worcester is sharing what the program entails and how it compares to other states’ drug testing policies.

Maine’s Welfare Drug Testing Program

Beginning this month, all participants in Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Program (TANF) who have a prior drug-related conviction are subject to drug testing before receiving their benefits.

The state will establish over 50 drug testing sites. There are no exact numbers of how many participants will be required to undergo drug testing, but estimates place it in the hundreds.

Drug Testing for Welfare Recipients in Other States

Virginia, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Pennsylvania have also instituted drug testing for welfare recipients with previous drug convictions. Other states have enacted or are attempting to enact laws that would require drug testing for welfare participants, including:

  • Alabama: SB 63 requires all TANF applicants and some recipients to undergo drug testing if there is reasonable suspicion of drug use. If the person refuses to take the drug test, benefits can be delayed, denied, or lost.
  • Mississippi: HB 49 requires TANF applicants to complete a written survey which is used to determine how likely they are to have an issue with substance abuse. If results suggest the possibility of substance abuse, they must submit to drug testing; benefits can still be awarded following positive results if they test negative after participation in a treatment program.

Will Massachusetts Require Drug Testing for Welfare Recipients?


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