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July 19, 2011

Indiana Blood Center Rejects Man for Appearing Gay

An Indiana blood center allegedly turned away a possible donor for “appearing gay,” The Chicago Sun Times reports. When Aaron Pace from Gary, Indiana, visited Bio-Blood Components, which pays for blood and plasma donations, employees told him he could not donate blood because he “appear[ed] to be a homosexual.” Pace asserts that he is heterosexual. The donation center was referring to a nearly 30-year-old Food and Drug Administration (FDA) policy that states men who have had sex with men, even once, since 1977 are not allowed to donate blood. Originally, the ban was sparked by concerns over HIV, when tests weren’t available, but today all donated blood is tested for HIV and other infectious diseases. Still, in a 2010 review of the policy, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services voted again not to recommend a change to the FDA policy.

To read the Sun Times article, click here.

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