Aussie Red Cross apologizes for anti-gay Facebook post

Facebook post which says gays can't give blood because they 'all engage in risky behavior' slammed

Aussie Red Cross apologizes for anti-gay Facebook post
16 October 2012 Print This Article

The Australian Red Cross has apologized after posting homophobic comments on Facebook claiming ‘all gays engage in risky behavior’.

The humanitarian health organization told News Ltd the remarks about blood donation, which were made in reply to a user’s accusation of homophobia, were made in ‘error’ by a busy employee.

In the post, which has now been deleted, the unnamed member of staff also claimed everyone with tattoos gets ‘infected by dirty needles’ and all people from the UK have mad cow disease.

National media manager Kathy Bowlen says the word ‘not’ was meant to be used before each statement.

She said: ‘Our policies are not at all homophobic or discriminatory but we know some people will think that no matter what we say. I’m disappointed it happened but there’s not much we can do.’

An official apology has now been issued on their Facebook page, saying lesbians can donate blood and gay and bisexual men can give provided they haven’t had sex with a same-sex partner for 12 months.

The comments sparked outrage among users, with many taking to the Australian Red Cross’s Facebook page to vent their anger.

Scott Hunter branded the organization ‘homophobic bigots’, while gay rights group LGBT Equality World Wide posted: ‘Your ignorance, prejudice and discriminatory ideals are back in the stone age and need to be re-evaluated.

‘I cannot believe an organization like yours would take the opportunity to insult homosexual men, those from England and those with tattoos and piercings.’

While gay man Simeon Lion-Hyde Yialeloglou said he was ‘shocked’ to be turned away from donating blood because he had had sex with another man within the last year.

He said: ‘I always practice safe sex with my monogamous partner. I have been and am regularly tested for all STIs and deemed totally clean and healthy.

‘What’s the matter with my blood? Why can’t I help save lives…because I happen to have sex with men?’

The Australian Red Cross replied by saying the reason for their restrictions on men who have sex with men is because of the ‘window period’ between when someone has contracted an infection such as HIV.

HAVE YOUR SAY

OTHER POSTS

No thumbnail available

New bill to allow gender change for transgenders without divorce requirement in NSW, Australia

State laws currently require transgender people to divorce their spouse before updated birth certificate can be issued
No thumbnail available

If you think same-sex parents are inherently worse than straight ones then you're homophobic

Sian Norris was raised by her mum and her mum’s female partner. She speaks out after comments made by former boxing manager and Celebrity Big Brother contestant, Kellie Maloney, about same-sex parenting
No thumbnail available

Hope renewed for gay marriage in Bermuda

Premier Craig Connonier says while same-sex marriage is not on the agenda, he hints it could come up in the possible future
No thumbnail available

Mr Gay Namibia suspended after domestic violence claims

Wendelinus Hamutenya claims organizers of gay pageant are trying to 'sabotage' his work
No thumbnail available

GSN announced as a corporate sponsors for Out & Equal

GSN is thrilled to announce that we are media partners for Out & Equal’s global summit
No thumbnail available

Will Elton John's Russia concerts be cancelled over his views on gay rights?

The iconic gay pop artist is scheduled to perform at two different locations in Russia this weekend, but speculations abound his gigs could be cancelled for speaking out on the country's anti-gay laws
No thumbnail available

Alabama: Lesbian lawmaker threatens to out affairs of anti-gay colleagues

'I will not allow legislators to talk about "family values" when they have affairs'
No thumbnail available
No thumbnail available

Egypt arrests seven for gay sex

Police entrap the alleged transsexuals on social media
No thumbnail available

European Parliament blasts Russia’s anti-gay laws

EU resolution strongly denounces Russian LGBT censorship laws