March 20, 2012
The following statement is from Howard Simon, Executive Director of the ACLU of Florida, regarding Governor Scott’s signing of HB 1205 last night – a law which allows for suspicionless searches of state government workers:
“Gov. Scott signed this law in clear defiance of constitutional principles. It’s amazing that the Governor and the Legislature would move ahead with a law that so clearly violates the Constitutional protections against invasive government searches without suspicion – especially while a legal challenge on precisely the same issue is pending in the federal court.
“The Governor’s preoccupation with pushing the limits of government searches is a costly legal gambit for taxpayers and makes a mockery of established Constitutional law. But it says a great deal that, after being such a cheerleader for invasive drug testing, the Governor signed this bill so quietly – almost in secret.
“No one should be surprised if this latest effort ends up in court – just as the Governor’s past efforts to impose urine testing on applicants for government benefits and his Executive Order for state employee testing are now before the courts.
“And when this matter lands in the courts, we expect they will make it clear once again that government cannot subject people to suspicionless searches just because it wants to. People do not lose their constitutional rights just because they work for the state of Florida.”