Skip to main content
  1. News
  2. Top News

Supreme Court could weigh in on Governor Scott's drug-testing order

See also

This week the Supreme Court will decide whether or not to hear Governor Rick Scott’s appeal to a permanent injunction against his drug-testing policy for government employees, according to on Tuesday.

In 2011, Scott implemented an executive order that every employee of the Florida state government be tested. This included department heads and everyone all the way down to janitorial staff. However, in April of 2012 a federal judge in Miami issued an injunction against the plan.

In addition, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees—which represents 40,000 out of over 85,000 state employees—challenged Governor Scott’s order. The union argued that the executive order violates the Fourth Amendment’s ban on unreasonable search and seizures.

The logic, as written by Judge Ursula Ungaro, is that Scott can’t prove any need to actually test the employees. In fact, two departments, the Department of Transportation and the Department of Juvenile Justice, did their own drug testing and found that less than one percent of workers failed.

Using that as background, it would be incredibly difficult for Scott to prove he has reason to test the other 99 percent for drugs. The judge notes that the risks to and invasions of privacy far outweigh any benefits that would come out of testing these employees. Miami News Times reports that when the one perfect did fail, it was mostly for marijuana use.

The 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled last year that the drug-testing couldn’t be constitutionally justified. The case was sent back down to a district court in order to determine just which employees could be tested. In January, Scott asked the Supreme Court to review the decision.

Scott’s newest argument is that government employees should be held to the same standard as employees in the private sector. He and his lawyers argue that submitting to drug-testing is a normal part of the job process, and the government shouldn’t be barred from the same practice.

The court will meet on Friday to decide whether or not to take the appeal.



  • Gaza school shelled
    Israeli airstrikes topple a school in Gaza suspected of housing rockets; dozens killed
  • Ebola outbreak
    An American with Ebola virus died shortly after boarding three planes
    World News
  • Why dogs smell butts
    Researchers figure out why dogs like to smell each other's butts
  • Time to stop tanning
    The surgeon general advises us not to tan as melanoma cases are on the rise
    Health News
  • Zimmerman lands dream job
    George Zimmerman lands his dream job as a security guard at a gun/motorcycle shop
  • 10 smartest states
    Here are the 10 most educated states in the U.S., did yours make the cut?
    US News

Related Videos:

  • Congress racing against time
    <div class="video-info" data-id="518253071" data-param-name="playList" data-provider="5min" data-url=""></div>
  • Warning: Graphic Images - Bloody Day In Gaza Strip
    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="//;allowfullscreen=true&amp;autoplay=1"></iframe>
  • Crop circle in Germany has people flocking to it singing, dancing and swinging pendulums.
    <div class="video-info" data-id="518348021" data-param-name="playList" data-provider="5min" data-url=""></div>