In the US, there is always a need for more blood donors. For some, just knowing that they cannot help in regards to this issue is almost unbearable. Giving is the American way, so when one’s hands are tied, it is also the American way to figure out how to help others by coming up with a Plan B.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) bans gay and bisexual men from donating blood. The other day Eric Norman made me aware of a way that these men can help to donate blood, thus satiating the need to help others in this very common manner. “I am co-leading an event for Buffalo, our beloved city,” stated Eric. “On July 11th, a nationwide blood drive will take place to bring attention to the ban and help save lives in the process. Gay and bisexual men will show their willingness to contribute by bringing allies to donate in their place.”
In order to get the background on this new blood giving development, I asked Eric to provide me with some more information pertaining to this leanest measure. This is what he had to say:
“Growing up in the United States it has always been clear that there is a vital need for blood. One donation has the potential to save up to three lives! I have always looked forward to the day that I would be able to give that precious gift. Unfortunately, it is a shame that in the US due to fear and repress that gay and bisexual men are disallowed and banned for life from donating blood. The need is real and the need is constant. It is time that our government heard us and changed this law.
“For the past couple years equal rights has been making strides for the LGBTQ community with DADT being repealed and DOMA being overturned. In many states the ban on gay marriage has been struck down. It is clear that this should be the next step towards equal rights for all. Any person should not be turned away from donating their blood based off their sexual orientation. Watch the video below to see how it all works:
“The grassroots organization – The National Gay Blood Drive – is calling a nationwide blood drive on July 11th. Co-leading this event for Buffalo along side Inbal Fischer, we are happy to say that we have been working rigorously with the American Red Cross in anticipation for this event. A White House petition will be made available July 1st and the expectation is that we will receive over 100,000 signatures within 30 days. On July 11th we ask our community to come to 786 Delaware to sign and donate their blood if eligible. We ask that gay and bisexual men bring their allied friends to donate in their place. Search for our Facebook page for additional information. Or visit the website gayblooddrive.com. For local news on this issue and the event, check out our FB event page. This grassroots effort to create change cannot happen without our community!”