House Approves Drug Test for Aid

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) _ The Kansas House has approved a bill mandating random drug tests for about 14,000 Kansans who receive cash assistance.

The 99-26 vote Wednesday sent the measure to the Senate.

Under the bill, testing would start next year for participants in the Temporary Assistance for Families, General Assistance, Child Care Assistance programs. They would lose their benefits after failing a third drug test; the first two times, they would receive
treatment.

Supporters said the testing would ensure that state tax dollars aren't being used to support illegal drug habits. They also said it would force addicts into treatment and protect children from being exposed to drug abuse.

Critics noted the bill eventually could cost the state $1.6 million a year. Some also said it unfairly targets the poor.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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