The NYPD is cracking down on “flex offenders” – warning workout warriors on the force that they could be fired if they take what they believe is a legal, over-the-counter muscle-building supplement that leads to a failed drug test, The New York Post has learned.
Cops “are responsible for anything ingested, injected or introduced into their bodies,” declares the directive fired off on Dec. 26 to all members with the subject line, “Possession or ingestion of anabolic steroids, human growth hormone and nutritional supplements.”
The memo doesn’t list any specific brand or ingredient, only noting supplements may include “prohibited, banned, or illegal substances” that may lead to “a drug test failure.”
The operations order comes after an unknown number of police officers who tested positive for banned substances, such as anabolic steroids, blamed weight-lifting supplements, a law enforcement source said.
Some are warning about the unintended consequences of the order.
“You can’t have this demand that we want cops as athletes and in shape while at the same time fire them for doing what every American can do legally, which is to take over the counter supplements for health reasons,” Yates told us.
While it’s true that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has found tainted products in over the counter supplements, Yates tells us that it shouldn’t fall on NYPD cops to be chemists and if the FDA doesn’t want to regulate supplements, the only way for a NYPD cop to avoid the threat of being fired is to not take any supplements including basic vitamins.
Yates calls the threat of firing for taking supplements just another piece of the “stay away from New York” pie that every current and future cop should know about.
“There are some great cops in New York but they have been lied to and they should consider another home. It’s clear from the continued abuse of these fine officers that they are not only not wanted but there is a continuous pursuit to see them fired or prosecuted,” Yates lamented.
Yates does recommend that any supplements taken should adhere to NSF/ANSI 173 Certification or another third-party testing certification that would exist on the product label. Yates said that the certification process is expensive and most companies do not participate but a few do including Thorne and Designs For Health.