Recruits who were denied entrance to the Air Force because they
“We are reviewing our initial entry disqualifies and looking at historical data to remove barriers to ensure we are not screening out candidates who will be successful Airmen and Guardians,” the Air Force said,
Following the two year trial period, the Air Force will assess whether to continue with the policy.
The Army and Navy have enacted similar pilot programs, signs that even the United States military — which has historically taken a hardline against both current and past drug use — is reckoning with the changing laws and attitudes toward marijuana throughout the country.
“As more states have legalized marijuana, there has been an increase of applicants who test positive for THC but are otherwise qualified for military service,” the Air Force said in a statement. “This pilot program will give us the information we need to inform a permanent, data-driven policy.
Air Force Pilot Program Limited to Certain Applicants
The Air Force
“Previously, a positive THC result on the initial test would have led to a permanent bar from entry into the [Air Force or Space Force],” Stefanek
But those waivers won’t be doled out to just anybody. In order to earn one,
“If those who have been granted a waiver pass a second test, candidates will be allowed to enlist,” Stefanek said,
Recreational marijuana is legal in 19 states, and there are legalization proposals on the ballot in several other states this November.
Democrats on Capitol Hill have pursued legislation that would deschedule marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act, the law that enshrines pot prohibition on the federal level.
Senior government officials in recent years have openly suggested that the drug testing requirements for top jobs in Washington should be reassessed.
In 2016, then-Defense Secretary Ash Carter was asked at a conference whether he would hire someone who had dabbled in some “goodies” prior to applying.
“It’s a very good question and we are changing that, in recognition of the fact that times change and generations change and by the way, laws change as respect to marijuana,” Carter said,
“In that and many other ways, we need to, while protecting ourselves and doing the appropriate things to make sure that it’s safe to entrust information with people, we need to understand — and we do — the way people [and] lives have changed, not hold against them things that they’ve done when they were younger,” Carter