In a further reminder of the growing spread between federal government law and actions being sanctioned in a growing number of states, the U.S. Navy issued a clarification that CBD products should be considered off limits for U.S. Navy personnel.

“Sailors who test positive for THC or other controlled substances for which they have no valid prescription are subject to mandatory administrative processing and could receive a discharge characterized as “Other Than Honorable” (OTH), which can affect future veteran’s benefits and employment opportunities,” the policy stated.

The Navy noted that while the White House passed the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, paving the way for CBD products to find commercial and medical applications, the Act should not be construed to change navy policy on CBD products.

“Navy policy has not been affected by the passage of the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, and all products derived from hemp or marijuana are still prohibited,” the Navy policy clarification stated. “While currently deemed legal for civilians in some states, all hemp and CBD products are strictly prohibited for use by Sailors.”

The Navy notes it is currently very difficult to determine the exact level of THC in many cannabis derived products, including CBD oils for ingestion or rubs for muscle aches and arthritis. The growing number of commercially available products are not regulated by the FDA, and may not be able to treat the illnesses and ailments they claim.

The Navy policy mirrors ongoing guidance released by the Office of Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), warning security clearance holders that despite changing policies concerning marijuana use in states from Colorado to D.C., federal government law prohibiting marijuana still trumps state policies, (thanks to the Supremacy Clause of the constitution). Security clearance holders caught doing marijuana will lose their eligibility and jobs, and applicants will often need to show passage of time and change in behavior in order to become eligible for a security clearance.

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Lindy Kyzer is the director of content at Have a conference, tip, or story idea to share? Email Interested in writing for Learn more here.. @LindyKyzer