The Navy announced Friday that it will begin regularly testing all Navy SEALs and the elite force's recruits for performance-enhancing drugs, signaling a major public shift for a community that was hit hard by investigations and criticism in the wake of a death in 2022.
Rear Adm. Keith Davids, the commander of Naval Special Warfare Command, told the entire special warfare community that it will now face random, forcewide urinalysis for the drugs, or PEDs, beginning in November.
The move is one of several safety measures the Navy has taken since the death of Navy SEAL recruit Kyle Mullen in 2022. Subsequent reporting publicly revealed that recruits have been turning to PEDs in order to pass what is considered to be one of the hardest and most prestigious training courses in the military.
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In a statement provided to Military.com, Davids said that the move was “to ensure every NSW teammate operates at their innate best while preserving the distinguished standards of excellence that define NSW,” Davids said.
According to Navy documents provided to Military.com, the PED testing will closely mirror the Navy's long-standing urinalysis program that tests sailors for drugs like marijuana, opiates and methamphetamines.
The documents say that “15% of a unit's population must be tested per month” and that commanders will have the ability to do a “unit sweep,” where every sailor in…