Amendments to Loosen Military’s Cannabis Rules Added to Must-Pass National Defense Bill

Recent amendments to the must-pass National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) are seeking to end cannabis drug testing at enlistment for new military members.

Full story after the jump.

Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz (R) has introduced an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that would end cannabis testing for military members, USA Today reports. The NDAA is a must-pass measure that reauthorizes military programs.

The proposal would end cannabis testing at the time of enlistment or when soldiers are being commissioned as an officer.

“Our military is facing a recruitment and retainment crisis unlike any other time in American history. I do not believe that prior use of cannabis should exclude Americans from enlisting in the armed forces. We should embrace them for stepping up to serve our country.” — Gaetz via Twitter

In 2017, the Army relaxed the process for granting waivers for cannabis consumption as it faced an increased demand for new soldiers.

Additionally, the Congressional Cannabis Caucus proposed an amendment that would allow Department of Veterans Affairs physicians to recommend cannabis as a treatment to patients in states where it is legal for medical use. Rep. Tony Gonzales (R-TX) also introduced an amendment that would allow military members to possess, use, or consume any product containing hemp; and Rep. Robert Garcia (D-CA), proposed an amendment that would prohibit the denial of security clearances by an agency if an individual used cannabis in a state where it is legalized.

Cannabis remains a prohibited, Schedule I substance under federal law.

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