Exclusive: Ten soldiers dismissed from Yorkshire Regiment in last two years for failing drug tests

Lord Dannatt, the former Chief of the General Staff.  Ben Birchall/PA Wire
Lord Dannatt, the former Chief of the General Staff. Ben Birchall/PA Wire
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Ten soldiers from the Yorkshire Regiment have tested positive for Class A drugs over the last two years and have been dismissed, according to information obtained by the Yorkshire Post.

Information supplied under the Freedom of Information Act from the Ministry of Defence shows that between January 2014 and January 2016 ten soldiers tested positive during compulsory drugs tests - although the Government stresses the figure may include those who tested positive for two or more drugs.

“All soldiers who tested positive were discharged from the Army under Queens Regulations,” the Ministry of Defence says in its response.

Concerns have previously been raised about the numbers of soldiers nationwide failing drugs tests. Lord Dannatt, the former Chief of the General Staff, responding to a national newspaper last year called on the Government to act “aggressively” to stamp out drug use and said it was robbing the military of vital recruits.

The information supplied to the Yorkshire Post by the Ministry of Defence also indicates in addition to the ten soldiers dismissed for failing Class A drug tests between January 2014 and January 2016, other service personnel also tested positive for taking Class B drug cannabis, and Class C drug steroids in both 2014 and 2015.

No specific figure is given but in each year and category the number failing tests was less than five, according to the information.

The Government says the misuse of drugs is inconsistent with service life and those found to have been taking drugs can expect to be discharged.

“The Army is clear that substance use is incompatible with service. Our policy on drug abuse is rigorously enforced and those who fail to meet our high standards are dismissed,” an Army spokesman said.