SASSI Issues Response to VICE Article on Drug-testing Welfare Recipients

SASSI, the for-profit institute that creates screening tests to determine if someone might be alcohol or drug dependent, responded to my VICE article on the growth of drug testing laws for welfare applicants in US states. While they do not explicitly connect this statement to my VICE article, it came just 10 days after one of their representatives sent me a lengthy email of demands and edit requests – all of which I reviewed, but the vast majority of which I felt were untenable.

“Ethical Issues:

• The purpose of the SASSI is to help people who have substance use disorders. To use the SASSI to discriminate against individuals, such as disqualifying job applicants or to deny public assistance, violates the purpose of the SASSI and is a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

• No screening measure is 100% accurate, and specific clinical information is required to meet the current American Psychiatric Association standards for a clinical diagnosis of a Substance Use Disorder. The SASSI can be a valuable tool for professionals making assessments when it is used properly and in conjunction with supplemental information.

• We encourage you to look over the following information regarding proper use of the SASSI screening instruments.”

Read the rest here, via ACLU.


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