Marijuana use no longer barrier to joining Air Force
- By FederalSoup Staff
- Jan 10, 2017
The Air Force on Jan. 9, announced new policies that loosen restrictions on recruits regarding tattoos and medical screenings that include marijuana use.
Effective Feb. 1, the military branch will no longer enforce its 25 percent tattoo rule, which banned tattoos on the chest, back, arms and legs from taking up more than 25 percent of the body part.
And while previously many recruits entering the Air Force were disqualified for marijuana use, the new policy will remove the numerical limitations on prior use of marijuana.
“We are always looking at our policies and, when appropriate, adjusting them to ensure a broad scope of individuals are eligible to serve,” Chief Master Sgt. of the Air Force James A. Cody, said in a news release, adding, “These changes allow the Air Force to aggressively recruit talented and capable Americans who until now might not have been able to serve our country in uniform.”
The Air Force, as part of its effort to streamline and standardize waiver processes, also loosened its medical restrictions on recruits with eczema, ADHD and asthma.
The changes are a result or a review of Air Force accessions policies directed by Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James in 2016.
“As a next step in this evolution, we are opening the aperture on certain medical accession criteria and tattoos while taking into account our needs for worldwide deployability and our commitment to the profession of arms," James said in the release.