I write this on a day when our LGBT (and other) brothers and sisters are in pain. As a part of that community, I am heartbroken over the news in Orlando. On top of tragedy is also insult, gay and bisexual male spouses of shooting victims cannot even donate blood to help. Gay and bisexual friends and family cannot even donate blood to help. Other members of the gay and bisexual community cannot donate blood to help.
The FDA recommends denying donors on the following bases:
Defer for 12 months from the most recent contact a man who has had sex with another man during the past 12 months.
Defer for 12 months from the most recent contact a female who has had sex during the past 12 months with a man who has had sex with another man in the past 12 months.
OneBlood, the primary donor clinic assisting the hospitals involved in the Orlando shooting when asked if it had lifted the ban in order to help the victims had this to say:
All FDA guidelines remain in effect for blood donation. There are false reports circulating that FDA rules were being lifted. Not true.
In a week and month where we should be celebrating our heritage and progress, we are reminded that there is still hate, and still progress to be made. We are also reminded that not only are we not yet equal, but neither is our blood.