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Federal Judge Holds Florida Executive Order Requiring Drug Testing for State Workers Unconstitutional

Today U.S. District Judge Ursula Ungaro ruled that Governor Rick Scott’s Executive Order 11-58 providing for pre-employment drug testing and random drug testing of state employees violates the Fourth Amendment ban on unreasonable searches and seizures. See American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) Council 79 v. Rick Scott, Case No. 11-civ-21976-UU. “To be reasonable under the Fourth Amendment, a search ordinarily must be based on individualized suspicion of wrongdoing,” Judge Ungaro wrote in her order, citing previous U.S. Supreme Court orders that ruled that urine tests are considered government searches.

This ruling also raises doubts about a new state law signed by Governor Scott this spring and which goes into effect on July 1, 2012 that would allow the Governor’s agency heads to randomly drug tests employees every three months provided that the random sample is not more than ten percent of the agency’s workforce.

Although Governor Scott suspended Executive Order 11-58 in June because of the lawsuit, he stated that he will appeal today's ruling.

Categories: Labor and EmploymentLitigationGovernment AffairsFederal LawFederal Courts
Tags: Public EmployeesEmployment AgreementsPublic EmployersGovernmental LitigationMunicipal GovernmentJamie A. ColeRaquel ElejabarrietaEdward G. GuedesMichael S. PopokBrett J. SchneiderJoseph H. SerotaFort Lauderdale Governmental Affairs AttorneysMiami Governmental Affairs AttorneysSouth Florida Governmental Affairs AttorneysMatthew H. MandelFort Lauderdale LitigatorsMiami LitigatorsFort Lauderdale Constitutional Law AttorneysMiami Constitutional Law AttorneysSouth Florida Constitutional Law AttorneysSouth Florida LitigatorsFort Lauderdale Employment Law AttorneysMiami Employment Law AttorneysSouth Florida Employment Law AttorneysFort Lauderdale Labor Law AttorneysMiami Labor Law AttorneysSouth Florida Labor Law AttorneysFlorida Employment AttorneysFlorida Labor LawyersMiami Employment AttorneyMiami Employment AttorneyMiami Labor LawyerMiami Litigation AttorneySouth Florida Employment Lawyers
Author(s): Brett J. Schneider & Raquel Elejabarrieta