Unemployment Compensation (UC): Issues Related to Drug Testing [Updated November 4, 2019] [open pdf - 1MB]
From the Document: "Recent interest in Unemployment Compensation (UC) drug testing has grown at both the federal and state levels. The policy interest in mandatory drug testing of individuals who are applying for or receiving UC benefits parallels two larger policy trends. First, some state legislatures have considered drug testing individuals receiving public assistance benefits. While UC is generally considered social insurance (rather than public assistance), the concept of drug testing UC recipients (who are receiving state-financed benefits from a program authorized under state laws) could be interpreted as a potential extension of this state-level interest. Second, over recent years, Congress has considered issues related to UC program integrity, including drug testing, which may be viewed as addressing UC program integrity concerns. [...] Some stakeholders also expressed concern that expanded UC drug testing could create barriers to UC benefit receipt among eligible individuals and discourage UC claims filing. Stakeholders have also raised at least two legal concerns with the new final UC drug testing rule: (1) some commenters have argued that the new final rule may violate the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, and (2) some commenters have argued that the new final rule improperly delegates authority to the states to identify occupations that regularly conduct drug testing. Other policy issues to consider related to expanding UC drug testing include administrative concerns, such as state establishment of a drug testing program for UC claimants as well as the potential provision of and funding for drug treatment services."
CRS Report for Congress, R45889
Congressional Research Service: https://crsreports.congress.gov/