Brazil’s supreme court has lifted restrictions limiting gay and bisexual men from donating blood. After almost four years in court the majority of court justices voted in favour of overthrowing guidelines, allowing gay and bisexual men to donate blood at any time, without a need for them to be celibate for any period of time.
The decision is considered a human rights victory for the LGBT+ community in the country. Edson Fachin, the supreme court minister commented that this ban was unconstitutional and it offended the basic human dignity of gay and bi men. “Instead of the state enabling these people to promote good by donating blood, it unduly restricts solidarity based on prejudice and discrimination,” wrote Fachin in his vote.
As ‘The Guardian’ reports, for LGBT+ activists the ruling was celebrated as a victory in a country where same-sex marriage is legal but LGBT+ people often face discriminatory government policies.
“A historical victory for the LGBT population! And the measure benefits everyone who needs donations, as blood stocks are almost always insufficient,” federal politician Samia Bomfim wrote on Twitter after the decision.
Several nations across the world have relaxed their rules on blood donation amid the coronavirus pandemic. Countries like Northern Ireland, the United States and Denmark all changed their rules on blood donation so that gay and bisexual men can donate blood three months after their latest sexual activity rather than a full year.
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