State Sen. Don Benton, R-Vancouver, has submitted Senate Bill 5585 to require welfare recipients to take tests for alcohol and drug abuse in order to receive their welfare monies. On impulse, this sounds like a good idea; none of us wishes to have our money given to addicts. But Benton's bill should also provide funding to care for the children who are impacted.
Further, our taxpayer money also supports legislators' salaries, so they — like welfare recipients — should not be abusing alcohol or drugs, either. Legislators also should be tested for performance and substance abuse in order to help ensure our taxpayer dollars are not being wasted.
We would like for Benton to amend his bill to include help for children of addicts, and to include attendance requirements and addiction-testing for our legislators.
To fail to do this should make voters look askance at motives and should doom this bill.
Robert and Yvonne Andrews