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Content about Blood donation

July 12, 2014

Gay and banned from donating blood? Gay men brought eligible allies to donate on their behalf

Friday marked the second annual National Gay Blood Drive to protest an US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) ban on blood donations from men who have had sex with other men.

In over 60 blood donation sites across the US, gay and bisexual men who cannot donate showed up with their heterosexual or lesbian friends and family members, who are eligible donors, to give on their behalf.

June 5, 2014

Botswana’s National Blood Transfusion Services is refusing to accept blood donations from gay, lesbian or transgender people in a move that activists say violates non-discrimination clauses in the country’s constitution

The Botswana Network on Ethics, Law and HIV/AIDS (BONELA) is challenging a National Blood Transfusion Services policy that bars gay, lesbian or transgender people from donating blood, saying the policy is unlawful discrimination.

BONELA announced plans to take National Blood Transfusion Services to court in May.

Botswana is experiencing a shortfall in its blood donation target of 40,000 units this year and gays and lesbians have been seeking to do their part in correcting that but they have been turned away from donating.

May 21, 2014

Gay men who are in committed monogamous relationships will join those who are not sexually active in being allowed to donate blood to the South African National Blood Service

South Africa has ended its ban on gay men donating blood for six months after they have last had sex which aimed to prevent HIV infected blood from entering the blood supply.

Under new rules announced by the South African National Blood Service gay men who are in monogamous committed relationships will be able to give blood alongside those who have not been sexually active for at least six month.

May 17, 2014

Clayre Sessoms said she tried to give blood in Vancouver, but her blood was rejected after nurses found out she is trans

A Canadian woman who regularly donates blood was turned away from a clinic this week; after nurses found out she was transgender.

Clayre Sessoms went to give blood in downtown Vancouver on Wednesday (14 May) when she was turned away by the nurses and told she couldn’t give blood.

After declaring the hormones she was taking for her transition, Sessoms was questioned about whether she had gender reassignment surgery and was informed her blood donation had to be deferred.

‘I was deeply hurt. I was kind of dumbstruck at first’ said Sessoms.

May 14, 2014

The New Zealand Blood Service has accepted a recommendation that its ban on gay men giving blood be reduced from five years after they have last been sexually active to just one year

Gay men in New Zealand will be able to give blood if they have tested negative for HIV and been sexually inactive for at least 12 months if new recomendations are approved.

Previously gay men had to be sexually inactive for five years before they could donate blood but a team from the New Zealand Blood Service noted that blood banks in neighboring Australia had successfully managed a one year exclusion period for gay men for ten years without any increase of HIV entering the blood supply.

April 7, 2014

Jeremy Hunt, the Northern Ireland Health Secretary, has previously claimed banning blood is needed to ensure public safety

Northern Ireland is being called on to defend its ban against gay men giving blood.

Jeremy Hunt, the Northern Ireland Health Secretary, has previously claimed banning 'gay blood' is needed to ensure public safety.

He has begun a legal appeal after a judge ruled it was up to him if gay men could donate blood in NI. A ban, which was enforced during the 1980s, 90s and 00s, was lifted in England, Scotland and Wales in 2011.

New rules allow gay and bisexual men to donate blood as long as their last sexual contact with another man was more than a year ago.

November 29, 2013

In response to the dire need of a boost to blood banks, health minister Daniel Bahr agrees something needs to be done

German doctors are calling for the end of a ban on gay men donating blood.

The German Medical Association has said it would aim to do everything ‘within its means’ to remove the ban.

A Europe-wide ban prevents all men who regularly have sex with men to donate blood.

While countries like the UK and Sweden allow gay and bisexual men to donate if they have not had sex in a year, other European countries like Germany rule them out indefinitely.

This is because MSM are deemed to fall into the ‘high risk’ category of potential HIV risk.

October 21, 2013

A civil union bill on the Mediterranean island is likely to pass but has raised other issues, including whether gay and bi men should be automatically excluded from donating blood

Malta has reaffirmed it will keep the ban on sexually active gay men giving blood – but the island nation is moving towards same-sex civil unions.

The Mediterranean island archipelago is currently debating a form of ‘gay marriage’ – which could be passed within weeks.

But that has led to questions about other LGBT issues, including about the ban on blood donations by gay and bisexual men.

And last week the Health Minister Godfrey Farrugia answered that question in a way that disappointed some and confused many.

October 15, 2013

High Court judge has ruled Northern Ireland's gay blood rules are 'irrational' and could overturn the lifetime ban

Northern Ireland's health minister has said he wants to ban men who have gay sex from giving blood, not gay people.

Edwin Poots has responded to the Belfast High Court who ruled he did not have the authority to impose a lifetime gay blood ban.

On Friday (11 October), the judge ruled he had breached the ministerial code by failing to take the issue to the Executive.

Speaking to BBC News, he said if he did break the ministerial code then he did it 'unwittingly'.

August 26, 2013

A sexually inactive 21-year-old gay man in Ireland, where it’s illegal for men who have sex with men to donate blood, has been blocked from donating until further notice

An openly gay man is accusing an Ireland blood bank of discrimination after doctors requested he stop donating even though he’s never had sex.

While Ireland has a lifetime ban on blood donations from men who have sex with men or intravenous drug users to protect blood supplies, 21-year-old Tomas Heneghan claims he’s never had sex with a man before and feels he should still be eligible to donate blood.

August 26, 2013

Moscow’s mayoral candidate Mikhail Degtyarev has announced plans to offer anonymous ‘gay conversion’ therapy sessions and re-introduce a ban on blood donations from men who have sex with men

Russia may bring back its ban on gay blood donors, and offer an additional gay-to-straight conversion therapy service.

32-year-old Mikhail Degtyarev, who is a candidate for mayor of Moscow, said since 65% of all HIV-positive people were homosexuals, the proposal could not be considered discriminatory.

The politician, who has a record of controversial statements, did not name the source of the statistic he used.

August 21, 2013

Gay men in US have been banned from donating blood since 1983 - Evan Low says that's long enough

Calling a policy that bans gay men in the US from donating blood 'a relic from decades past,' the openly gay mayor of Campbell, California has launched a campaign to end it.

Evan Low was turned away at a local blood drive he had led in organizing because of the current policy of the Federal Drug Administration enacted in 1983 during the early days of the AIDS crisis.

July 18, 2013

Socialist MP and doctor Olivier Veran has called for the lifting of France’s lifetime ban on gay men donating blood, calling for people to be screened based on behavior rather than sexuality

A French Government backbencher and doctor has delivered a report supporting the end of the lifetime ban on gay men donating blood to Health Minister Marisol Touraine.

Socialist MP Olivier Veran, who is a qualified neurologist, compiled the report after Touraine indicated she might be supportive of lifting the ban if there was evidence that it would not increase the risk of HIV infected blood getting into France’s blood supply.

July 18, 2013

Opposition lawmaker Raymond Chan Chi-chuen has called on the Hong Kong Red Cross to change its rules so that gay men can donate as the group struggles to find new donors

Openly gay Hong Kong lawmaker Raymond Chan Chi-chuen has called on the Blood Bank of Hong Kong to allow people to donate blood regardless of sexual orientation after he was stopped from donating.

Currently any man who has had sex with another man is banned from donating blood in Hong Kong but the Blood Bank has been having trouble attracting new donors and keeping up with demand.

July 13, 2013

Yesterday gay men around the country joined in a peaceful demonstration to protest the federal law that prohibits gay men from donating blood

Gay men across the US have joined forces against the 1970’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) ban on gay blood donors.

Gay rights organizations and activists organized a National Gay Blood Drive day yesterday (12 July) where men who have sex with men, also known as MSM, were encouraged to arrive at 53 blood donation centers around the US and attempt to give blood.

May 23, 2013

New policy will see gay men who have been celibate for five years eligible to give blood in Canada

Canada is lifting its strict lifetime ban on gay men giving blood, although restrictions will still be in place.

The Canadian Blood Services are hoping to have the new policy in place by mid-summer 2013.

While there will no longer be a lifetime ban, men who have not had sex with other men in the last five years will be allowed to donate blood.

The new policy will replace the existing screening criteria, which excludes potential male donors who have had sex with another man since 1977 — the year HIV began spreading rapidly throughout North America.

April 15, 2013

After a 23-year-old attemped suicide and was taken off life support last year, it has inspired his family to try and change the rules of organ donation

A Canadian woman has said she believes her late son’s organs were rejected for donation because he was gay.

Nancy Campana says she was asked if her son Rocky, who was an organ donor, was gay after his death.

‘I was asked if he was a gay male and I said, “yes.” And I was asked if he was a sexually active gay male or if he had a partner and I said, “yes”,’ Campana told CBC News.

March 29, 2013

Campaigner Michael Kevin Hernandez wants more gay and bisexual men to have the right to be superheroes and give blood

When was the last time you thought about being a superhero and saving a life?

When I ask people, 'Who is an everyday superhero?' you might answer a firefighter, police officer, doctor, those in the military who serve our country. But we can all potentially be a superhero. You may already be one and not even know it, because you can donate blood.

Each time we donate blood we can save up to three lives. Someone who has suffered a car accident can use an average 100 pints of blood. At that moment when you donate blood you are saving a life. That makes you a hero.

March 25, 2013

Yael German, Israel’s new minister of health, has instructed a public committee to deliberate the removal of a ban on blood donations from gay men

In her first move as Israel's new health minister, Yael German instructed the ministry staff today (25 March) to reconsider the ban on accepting blood donations from gay men.

The form filled out by every blood donor in Israel states that men who have had sex with other men are prohibited from donating blood.

People who are HIV positive, used drugs or been exposed to mad-cow disease, among other constraints, are also prohibited from donating blood.

February 28, 2013

A YouTube clip condemning the Thai Red Cross Society for not accepting 'gay blood' is watched over 13,000 times

Three gay men in Thailand have posted a video condemning the Thai Red Cross Society for not accepting 'gay blood'.

In the video posted on YouTube the three men angrily criticize the organization, part of the international Red Cross charity, that takes care of blood donation in the southeast Asian nation.

One of the men in the video talks about being refused as a blood donor by the Thai Red Cross society, Bangkok Post reports.

January 13, 2013

Canadian Blood Services have proposed an end to the country’s lifetime ban on gay men donating blood, recommending that those who have not had sex for five years or more should be acceptable donors

Canada looks set to end its lifetime ban on men-who-have-sex-with-men giving blood after a Canadian Blood Services recommendation that the ban be reduced to five years.

In September 2011 the Canadian Blood Services board of directors passed a motion committing the organization to re-examine its policy and in December it recommended to Health Canada that men-who-have-sex-with-men who have not been sexually active for five or more years should be considered acceptable donors.

November 30, 2012

Congress has passed a bill that could ban clinics from asking blood donors their sexual orientation

Gays and lesbians in Argentina could be one step closer to donating blood.

The Chamber of Deputies passed on 29 November (Thursday) a bill that would modify the nation's blood donating laws.

The measure, to be debated by the Senate in 2013, would remove certain questions from forms used by clinics and hospitals that require potential blood donors to divulge their sexual orientation.

August 6, 2012

Protesters in Londonderry urge for 'biased and illogical' ban on gay blood donations to be lifted in Northern Ireland

Protesters have called on Northern Ireland's health minister Edwin Poots to resign over his refusal to lift a ban on gay people donating blood.

LGBT rights activists shouted 'Give Poots the boot' outside a blood donation session in Londonderry on Saturday (4 August).

They then went inside to offer their blood, which the health service in Northern Ireland is still not allowed to accept, despite restrictions on gay donors being eased in the rest of the UK.

July 13, 2012

Summer Wu, volunteer for Shanghai-based lesbian organization Nvai, comments about how she feels about China’s lifting of the ban on lesbians giving blood

China lifted a ban on lesbians donating blood this month, but gay men are still strictly banned. Though I am pleased by this achievement, discriminatory regulation still exists.