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Summary: Prior to 2012, federal law prohibited unemployment drug testing as a requirement for unemployment insurance. With a recent removal of this ban, the federal government now allows drug testing on individuals who had jobs identified by the U.S. Department of Labor.
As a result, SB 21 would require individuals who have worked in a job identified by the Department of Labor and who are seeking to receive unemployment benefits to comply with the drug screening and testing program requirements. The individual must pass the drug test to receive benefits. If the individual does not pass the drug test, then the person cannot receive benefits until passing a drug test four weeks after submitting the failed one. SB 21 would provide reasons for exceptions for a failed drug test and requirements on how the Texas Workforce Commission informs an individual who has failed a drug test and the retake requirements.
Analysis: SB 21 would require individuals who receive unemployment benefits to be held responsible for their behavior by ensuring that these benefits do not go to individuals who are misusing the system. We support SB 21.