April is Organ and Tissue Donation Month. In line with this celebration is the call for donors to donate the blood of life. The call was very finely presented except that gay men were distinguished as a not suitable donors.
Gay men have been banned from donating blood, organs and tissues to save other lives since the 1980s. We are in the year 2015 and we still remain in a state of ignorance and held prisoner to a system that needs an upgrade to illuminate the atrocious ban.
This blatant discrimination on gay people should be completely dismantled and the time is now. Last year, the Canadian Blood Services decided to lessen the ban of seven years of abstinence to five in a move to decrease protests from the gay population and medical practitioners.
Organs and tissue donations could save the lives of Canadians in need of donors. Family members, neighbors and friends lives are at stake yet gay men cannot donate badly needed blood and organ unless they abstain from having any sexual activity in the last five years.
The main reason why this is so is because HIV virus is dominant among the gay community. Though this has been harshly debated as the HIV virus does not exempt anyone and affects everyone regardless of his sexual orientation. The situation can be disconcerting if a gay man’s offspring needs an organ, tissue or blood donor, then the child will certainly die without a perfect match donor which could be provided by the gay father. This discrimination against gay must end to save thousands of lives.
In which case, since all donations are tested thoroughly, tainted blood and organs are discarded. Another point to take into consideration is that we take on the responsibility in taking care of the well-being of our loved ones and this discriminatory practice by CBS is definitely unacceptable.
In the U.S. gay men abstaining from sexual activity for one year can donate blood, though it has remained a big issue, but still a step in the right direction.
The LGBTQ community must make a stronger stand and be vocal in making an immediate change. We stand together in unity and oppose the present policy. Many lives are dependent on the outcome. The present law is totally unacceptable and increases the needless deaths in our country. This month we highlight organ and tissue donations as a necessary method to save lives. Let us move to accept blood and organ donations from gay men.