Cannabis policy has already been changed in the Major league of Baseball, in December. Marijuana was removed from the list of banned substances. NFL could be next. The NFL players union held a few conference calls in recent weeks to discuss how to proceed to lift the ban on cannabis.
Players currently had to go under a four-month testing period starting on April 20 (4/20). The new measures proposed that the players undergo a two-week testing period instead.
NFL players were also subject to relentless penalties for cannabis offenses in the past. These penalties would also be lifted. The new measures will implement suspension penalties only in the event of extreme and repeated disregard of the policy or violations of the law regarding possession and use of cannabis. On top of that, new levels for positive/ negative testing will be implemented, the amount of THC allowed will go from 35 nanograms to 150.
The league is finally ceasing to fine players for cannabis consumption or possession and is moving toward a more constructive approach. Providing help to those in need is now a priority. If a player gets a positive result during the two-weeks of training camp, he will meet with professionals who can better evaluate the situation. After this review, the board will make a decision about the player's need for treatment.
The CBA's policies concerning cannabis were a lot stricter before:
-Regular season, 10 players per team were randomly picked for weekly tests.
- A positive test meant a referral to the substance abuse program.
-The second violation resulted in 2 games checks.
-The third violation resulted in 4 games checks.
-The fourth violation resulted in a 4 games suspension.
- The fifth violation resulted in a 10 games suspension.
-The sixth violation resulted in a one-year-ban.
The new CBA regulations also update the situation concerning performance-enhancing drugs:
-The first failed test for stimulants or diuretics results in a 2 games suspension.
-The first failed test for anabolic steroids will result in a 6 games suspension.
-Manipulation or substitution of the use of prohibited substances will result in an 8 games suspension.
-The second failed test for stimulants or diuretics results in a 5 games suspension.
- The second failed test for anabolic steroids will result in a 17 games suspension.
To conclude, the NFL is the second major sports league to update its policy concerning cannabis use after the MLB. It is big news for the 2020 season starting in September. We cant wait to see which other major sports league will modify and modernized their policies concerning the plants for the 2020-2021 seasons.