Home News Almost half of booted Marines are discharged for drugs and alcohol

Almost half of booted Marines are discharged for drugs and alcohol

Master Trooper Brad Taylor with the North Carolina Highway Patrol, informs Marines on how alcohol affects the body and mind and the impacts on a driver’s capabilities during a Rethink the Drink event at Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Cherry Point, North Carolina, July 2, 2019. (U. S. Marine Corps photos by Lance Cpl. Michael Neuenhoff)

The US Marine Corps has a serious issue with misconduct and substance abuse, so much so that it has cost the USMC over $1 billion in ten years.

In a single decade, the USMC has kicked out 25,336 Marines, with the around 11,765 of the oustings being for drug and alcohol offenses.

“This must change,” Commandant General David Berger said of the dismal numbers.

Since October of 2017, 2,410 Marines have “popped hot’ in drug tests, but only around 48.8% of those who failed the tests were separated.

“I am deeply troubled by the continued retention of Marines failing to adhere to our standards related to drug use,” Berger wrote in the annual Commandant’s Planning Guidance. “We are an elite institution of warriors, and will remain so on my watch. It is our shared responsibility to ensure the continued health of our collective soul and identity.”

According to Task & Purpose, the USMC also seems to struggle with sexual assaults, as evidenced by a spike in reports.

“The continued rise in reporting leads me to conclude that we still do not fully understand the scope and scale of this issue, or that we can say with any confidence that the measures we have taken to date are preventing sexual assaults,” Berger said.

Other issues of misconduct involved high-ranking officers, racism, domestic violence and other factors.

“There is no place in our Marine Corps for those who deliberately misuse their authority to physically or sexually assault another; no place for those who risk the lives of those they seek to serve by operating a motor vehicle while impaired; no place for those who are intolerant of their fellow Marines’ gender or sexual orientation; no place for those who engage in domestic violence; and no place for racists- whether their intolerance and prejudice be direct or indirect, intentional or unintentional,” Berger stated.

According to the DoD, the number of reported sexual assaults in the Marine Corps rose by 20% in FY2018.

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