Whilst this is great progress and step in the right direction to ending the blood ban on Gay and Bisexual men this is still not good enough.
Yes, the new policy would allow some bisexual men that have perhaps settled down with a women for more than 10 years or even “straight” men that had dabbled in the past to give blood which is great (though you have to question whether they were open about this on the blood forms to begin with). It still however openly and actively discriminates against gay men (or those that are sexually active at least once every 10 years…….).
Think of a reaction to a policy where it said that only heterosexual men and women that have not had sex for 10 years can give blood….there would be no donors! We’re sorry NBS, but gay men are sexual and do have sex and we should not be punished for doing so when it is safe and protected.
Now with the Royal College of Nurses giving their full support and backing to the ban being lifted I hope we can progress much further than this superficial change, that on the surface looks like progress and in some ways it is, however it really doesn’t change much in regards to the fight for equality and ending discrimination.
Want some further reading? Peter Tatchel provides a great article and argument for removing the ban