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Debate Speech Outlines


According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary the definition of a welfare recipient is someone

who is poor or unemployed that applies to a government program for help paying for food, housing, and
medical costs. One of the roles of our government is to help citizens going through hard times get back
on their feet, but the government should not be taken advantage of by welfare recipients seeking aid.
Mandatory drug testing should be legalized for all welfare recipients because if you are turning to the
government for financial stability and help, there is no reason that a drug test should be a problem to
pass. The substance abuse and mental health administration, which is part of the Department of Health
and Human Services, found that 9.6 percent of people living in households that receive government
assistance used illicit drugs, compared with a 6.8 percent rate among families who receive no assistance
(Should Welfare). The total amount of money you can make a month and still receive welfare is $1,000
dollars. Also in 39 states welfare pays more than an $8.00 an hour job, in 6 states welfare pays more
than a $12.00 an hour job, and in 8 states welfare pays more than the average salary of a U.S. teacher. A
study done in Utah from 2012-2013 saved the state over $350,000 dollars. 250 people who failed to
meet drug testing requirements and were banned from applying for benefits for three months. Those
people would have received more than $350,000 dollars in benefits. Representative Brad Wilson
explained the whole purpose is to get people back in the workforce and off welfare. We cant get them
back to work if they refuse to enter the welfare program and work towards a goal to better themselves
financially. As Wilson stated if we can help the 10 percent that are challenged with drug problems,
why wouldnt we? The next step, "Is to find out why those 250 people would rather not get benefits
and keep using drugs, and what we can do to maybe help them realize that is a poor choice." In the
grand scheme of things the goal is to reduce drug problems, allow welfare help to people who truly
need it, and encourage recipients to set goals for themselves financially so they arent receiving welfare
for their entire lives. This is a perfect example of why drug testing welfare recipients should be legalized.
Thank you.

Cross Examination:

a. Do you have a job?

b. Do you work hard for what you have?

c. Would you be upset if someone who was really struggling financially received some
of your paycheck to help them pay for their own needs?

d. Would you be upset if someone who had money to pay for drugs received some of
your paycheck to help them pay for basic needs, even though they had extra money
to spend on drugs?

e. How much money does a drug user spend annually? Marijuana user can spend close
to $1,000 per year, a methamphetamine user can spend $4,000 or more each year,
and people addicted to heroin or cocaine spend over $10,000 each year (The
Financial Costs).

f. How much does one drug test cost? $42.00 on average.

g. Would you rather have our government spend $42.00 a person to drug test welfare
recipients or allow welfare recipients to abuse the system and pay for drugs versus
paying for things like food, rent, utilities etc.?

h. Do you feel that drug testing a welfare recipient is any different than drug testing
someone at work?

i. If yes why?

ii. If no why? Considering that while on welfare you get financial help without
working, and at work you are earning your money. Again it would not be an
invasion of privacy because only drug users would say that it is an invasion
of privacy because theyre participating in illegal acts. Companies dont
want drug users as employees, as the government/citizens doesnt want
drug users receiving financial help through welfare, instead they should be
receiving substance abuse help through a rehab program.

Side note if time is left:


Our society has become lazy and feels that over government should give drug users that are
abusing the welfare system a pat on the back and allow them to receive our hard earned tax dollars,
rather than spend their drug money on things that matter. Clearly to them, drugs are the priority but
feeding their children, paying rent, and bettering themselves is not. Instead of allowing these people in
the welfare system, we should detect them right away with drug testing and require them to attend
substance abuse programs. Receiving welfare is a privilege, no one is entitled to it. Therefore I am asking
all of you to stand with me, and legalize drug testing for welfare recipients to help the people who need
it, and also find ways to help those who have drug problems, so we are bettering our economy as a
whole. Thank you.