By: Matt Horn
September 20, 2013
Governor Rick Scott says he will take his push for random drug testing of state employees all the way to the US Supreme Court. Opponents and a federal judge say the fight is pointless because it violates the constitution.
Florida has been the brunt of jokes since it decided to drug test state workers and welfare recipients. Scott was even asked to take a test by a Comedy Central reporter, ”So would you be willing to, uh, pee into this cup to prove to Florida taxpayers you’re not on drugs?”
It’s no laughing matter for the 85-thousand state employees who are in the middle of a battle between the Governor, the ACLU, and the state employees’ union.
“The government is not allowed to just randomly tell us to urinate in a cup,” said Doug Martin, a member of The American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees.
AFSCME said they have been battling the Governor on drug testing since he took office. It’s a battle AFSCME says the state won’t win, because the U.S. Supreme Court would have to toss out the 4th amendment.
“Citizens should be free from unreasonable search and seizure of their persons,” said Martin.
In 2011, a judge declared Scott’s drug testing order to be an unconstitutional violation of workers’ privacy rights. State workers can already be drug tested if there is reasonable suspicion to do so.
A statement released by Rick Scott’s office reads: “Many Floridians are required to take drug tests in their workplace and it is only right for state workers paid with taxpayer funds to be required to do the same”
We talked to a number of state workers, all we talked to say they support the current drug testing policies, but not random testing
”I think that would infringe on individuals constitutional liberties,” said a state employee who chose to remain nameless because of the sensitive nature of the issue.
The Drug testing issue is back in court next month.
A judge re-iterated on Thursday that she believes Scott will not win this case.