The New York State Senate today passed legislation, sponsored by Senator Andrew Lanza (R-I, Staten Island), that would require random testing for anabolic steroids in high school athletes in public and private schools.
"This legislation is about protecting young people by helping them avoid harmful drug use," said Senator Lanza. "Steroid abuse is a growing problem which poses a significant health threat to our high school athletes. In addition to educating kids about the harmful physical and emotional consequences steroids can have, we need to strongly deter student athletes from using these harmful drugs to begin with. This legislation sheds light on the issue and sends the message that steroid use will not be tolerated by school athletic programs."
"High school athletics should be about healthy competition, but when an athlete makes the decision to use illegal steroids, it poses a threat to themselves and to others," said Senator Joseph Bruno. "This bill will deter high school athletes from harmful drugs, and encourage them to respect their bodies and enjoy healthier lives."
The bill (S.6769-A) mirrors a bill passed in the Texas Legislature and requires athletes to agree not to use illegal steroids and to submit to random testing if selected.
The latest survey from the Centers for Disease Control shows at least 700,000 teenagers, or five percent of all high school students, use steroids. The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee held hearings in January regarding the issues surrounding performance enhancing substances in Major League Baseball identified by former Senator George Mitchell in his report on the subject.
The bill was sent to the Assembly.