California Might Start Paying Drug Addicts to Stop Doing Drugs

Photo by Gage Skidmore via ( Flickr

California is well known for a verity of things celebrities, insane spending, and rampant drug usage in the streets. State officials are now looking to combine the last two in a major policy move. The state of California is considering paying drug addicts tax dollars to stop doing the drugs they are addicted too.

From Fox News:

Frustrated by out-of-control increases in drug overdose deathsCalifornia’s leaders are trying something radical: They want the state to be the first to pay people to stay sober.

The federal government has been doing it for years with military veterans and research shows it is one of the most effective ways to get people to stop using drugs like cocaine and methamphetamine, stimulants for which there are no pharmaceutical treatments available.

It works like this: People earn small incentives or payments for every negative drug test over a period of time. Most people who complete the treatment without any positive tests can earn a few hundred dollars. They usually get the money on a gift card.

It’s called “contingency management” and Gov. Gavin Newsom has asked the federal government for permission to use tax dollars to pay for it through Medicaid, the joint state and federal health insurance program for the poor and disabled that covers nearly 14 million people in California.

Many are up in arms over this proposal as the states spending is already viewed as out of control and many fear that some drug addicts will spend the money on more drugs.

This proposal is moving forward as California governor Gavin Newsom is under recall and has a tough political battle ahead of him.