FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                                  APRIL 21, 2015

CONTACT STATE REPRESENTATVIE MIKE ROHRKASTE                                                (608) 266-5719


Rep. Rohrkaste Circulates Bills Promoting Substance Abuse Treatment & Workforce Readiness

 Madison – Representative Mike Rohrkaste (R-Neenah) is circulating two bills for co-sponsorship, both aimed at helping individuals fight substance abuse and find meaningful employment in Wisconsin.

 “Far too often, job opportunities remain vacant and positions go unfilled because potential employees are not able to pass a drug test,” said Rep. Rohrkaste.  “With thousands of job openings currently available around the state, these bills take an important step in identifying those individuals who may test positive for substance abuse, allows them to receive state provided treatment, and then puts them on a path to achieve gainful employment.”

 LRB 2263/1 would require the Department of Workforce Development to screen Unemployment Insurance claimants for illegal drug use for whom suitable work may only be found in certain fields where passing a drug test would be a pre-requisite for meaningful employment.  Should the screening indicate a reasonable suspicion of unlawful drug use then the claimant will be required to submit to a drug test.  If that test shows that a claimant tests positive for an illegal substance, they would be offered treatment to ensure they receive the help they need to become drug free.

 LRB 1895/1 would provide treatment to individuals enrolled in state-sponsored transitional job programs who may be suffering from substance abuse.  The bill prescribes a screening for potential drug abuse for those enrolled in these programs and only upon a reasonable suspicion of illegal drug use would a drug test be administered.

 “In Wisconsin, we want to make sure that anyone who is looking for a job can find one,” stated Rep. Rohrkaste.  “These bills will help to ensure that our workforce is drug free and that those who are looking for work are fully prepared to enter the workforce.”