Starting late last year, North Carolina began issuing drug tests to new applicants for certain state welfare benefits. Now the state is reporting that 24 percent of the first batch of applicants tested came up positive for illegal drugs.
State officials report that of the 89 applicants given the drug test, 21 of them tested positive. An additional 70 applicants who were told to take the test never showed up for their appointment and consequently never got benefits.
The law requiring drug testing of Work First recipients suspected of drug use was signed into law in 2013 despite Republican Governor Pat McCrory’s veto — his first such action.
In his veto statement, McCrory said the legislature “overreached” with its drug testing requirement.
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