There's no modern science that justifies banning countless gay, bisexual, trans and non-binary Australians from donating blood today. We call for individual risk assessment for potential blood donors and a removal of this scientifically unjustifiable ban.
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We the undersigned call on the Australian Red Cross Lifeblood Service and the Therapeutic Goods Administration to institute a new donor policy that screens potential donors for their individual risk, not the gender of their sexual partner.
The current policy, imposing an abstinence period on gay, bisexual, transgender and gender non-conforming Australians who have sex with men, limits the supply of safe blood, and stigmatises gay, bi, trans and non-binary people as a threat to public health.
All recent scientific and medical studies from around the world show conclusively that removing the ban on gay, bisexual and transgender blood donors will not jeopardise the safety of the blood supply.
They also show that a policy of individual risk assessment will mean there is more safe blood and less stigma.
This is why individual risk assessment has been adopted around the world, including in the UK, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Argentina, Israel and soon in France and the United States.
It’s time for Australia’s blood donation authorities to acknowledge the science and adopt best global practice.
It’s time to allow blood donation from all Australians with safe blood, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity.
See our declaration for doctors, nurses and other health professionals here