Following the mass shooting an Orlando gay nightclub that killed 50 and left scores injured, officials and medical staff underscored the need for blood donations – unless you’re gay. The US Food and Drug Administration prohibits men who’ve had sex with men within the last year from donating blood.
Social media lit up earlier today with a rumor that an Orlando blood bank was rebelling and allowing gay men to donate blood, the donation center tweeted that it was still enforcing the ban.
All FDA guidelines remain in effect for blood donation. There are false reports circulating that FDA rules were being lifted. Not true.
— OneBlood (@my1blood) June 12, 2016
Many expressed outrage that the ban was still in place after being proven medically unnecessary years ago. Modern screening processes make the ban redundant since all blood is screened for the virus that causes AIDS automatically.
Openly gay Congressman Jared Polis (D-CO) expressed his outrage on Twitter, pointing out that a gay man wouldn’t be able to donate blood that would save his husband’s life.
We must overturn the morally bankrupt/dangerous ban on gay people giving blood. Absurd someone can't even donate blood to their own husband?
— Jared Polis (@jaredpolis) June 12, 2016
Actress Mia Farrow also joined the chorus pointing out the absurdity of the discriminatory rule…
Straight people please donate blood for the wounded because Orlando won't accept gay people's blood
— Mia Farrow (@MiaFarrow) June 12, 2016
…as did Dallas Voice reporter Bobby Blanchard.
Orlando Hospitals need blood donations to help save gay people.
Yet gay people can't give blood to help their own. Because they're gay.
— Bobby Blanchard (@bobbycblanchard) June 12, 2016
Until late 2015, any man who had ever had sex with another man was banned from donating blood entirely.