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Gay man launches Charter challenge against blood-donor screening

Claimant says forms asking male donors if they’ve had sex with any men violate rights


 

Since the Krever inquiry, there has been general agreement that the personal questions asked by Canadian Blood Services are a reasonable limitation on our Charter rights. The idea is to limit the health risk posed to blood recipients. But Kyle Freeman, a Thornhill, Ont. man, has called this assumption into question by suing the agency on the grounds that its questionnaire is unjustified and discriminatory. The suit arose after Freeman lied on the part of his questionnaire that asks whether he’d had sex with even a single man since 1977 (he had). He later emailed the agency to tell them as much, and now maintains he’d recently tested negative for blood-born diseases like HIV. “I felt the benefit of giving blood would outweigh the political position of Blood Services,” he said.

Ottawa Citizen


 
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Gay man launches Charter challenge against blood-donor screening

  1. About time. Refusing to allow monogamous homosexuals to donate blood is discriminatory, as the risk of HIV amongst monogamous people, regardless of sexuality, is very low.

    • How do we prove Monogamy.

  2. So no one remembers the crisis during the 1980's? We are doomed to repeat our mistakes. Besides I thought those questions were developed in conjunction with the gay community. And I believe that all of the questions are asked to everyone looking to donate blood. How silly is this man.

    • During the 1980's there was no testing of donated blood for HIV. Now we have really good tests. In the 1980's gay men supported the ban because it made sense.

  3. Can we also sue about asking us about seeing a prostitute. And visiting Africa. And having sex with more than one person over the past few years……

  4. Nobody should take offense at the apparent "high risk questions", because they are there for everyone and for the safety of everyone. I could cry discrimination because in the "last 6 months, I haven't had sex with anyone"…. Probably closer to the "last 6 years".
    The whole world seems to be consumed with and consummated by sex, and preferential sex by the loudest individuals. As a relative bystander and an observer, I simply want to give of my health to help others. So, roll up your sleeves and "go with the flow".
    Forget the knit-picking. I'm an anal virgin and proud of it. I don't discriminate, nor do I envy or idolize, those who are not.

  5. I've donated well over 100 pints of whole blood in my lifetime. Is there anything wrong with just enduring the stipulations of CBS's program? We saw the huge fiasco when the Canadian Red Cross got lax, so we can be grateful for the total safety being promoted here by an agency that is totally devoted to the health of the "blood pool". The origin of HIV is with primates, homosexual anal sex, and the subsequent interrelations in the high-risk settings of the geographic regions where these activities took place, were spawned and intensified.

  6. How does not being able to donate blood in ANY way disenfranchise the rejected donor? There is no such thing as a 'right' to donate blood. The restrictions are there as a precaution, to protect the blood supply. The problem with gays is that they are taking it personally, when it is not meant as such.

    Look at people who have spent 3 months in the U.K. between 1980, and 1996. Those people get a PERMANENT deferral, and will never be allowed to donate blood, just because there is the CHANCE they might have contracted vCJD.

    I think people forget what is at stake here. The blood is needed to SAVE LIVES, and I think it is extremely selfish of someone to feel that they have to right to INSIST that their blood be used when they are part of a higher risk group of donors.

  7. What kind of a moron is Freeman to lie on his screening form and then get tested for HIV after giving his blood. The blood is needed by children and adult hospital patients. He should be charged for falsifying a legal document (the questionaire requires his signature) that he has answered all questions truthfully. Just because he has an axe to grind he is willing to put patients at risk!! How would he like his parent or sibs to receive a unit of blood from someone in his community that had falsified the same questionaire?? How dare he endanger the lives of patients!!

  8. Freeman aside, the policy does seem too broad. Even once since 1977? What about those who've only had oral sex with other men? Those who haven't had sex with another man in 10 or 20 years? Those who've only had one male sex partner? Seems like there has to be a better way to separate those who are really at risk than "even once since 1977."

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