A straight Chicago man is threatening to sue on the grounds of discrimination after he was not allowed to donate blood because he “looks gay”.
Aaron Pace (22), who has been described as effeminate but insists he’s not gay, told ABCNews.com that he was humiliated by the experience.
In an interview with a staff member at Bio-Blood Components Inc he was told that he was not eligible to donate blood.
“She said ‘I’m sorry, but it’s the way that you act and appear to be. [It’s] your sexuality.’ And I said ‘because I’m what?’ and she said ‘because you’re gay,'” said Pace.
A doctor apparently supported the nurse’s assesment and also refused to allow him to donate.
Pace told the Chicago Sun-Times: “It’s not right that homeless people can give blood but homosexuals can’t. And I’m not even a homosexual.”
The US Food and Drug Administration implemented the policy to restrict the donation of blood by gay men in 1983.
Last year, it decided to continue with the policy despite growing calls by activists, scientists and the American Red Cross for it to be dropped on the grounds that it is unscientific and out of date.
Under current South African National Blood Service (SANBS) policy, gay males may donate blood if they have been celibate for six-months.