NDP, Conservatives question Liberal commitment to ending blood ban after it’s left out of platform

DM

The Liberals’ longstanding promise to the LGBTQ2S community to eliminate the blood ban was absent from the 2021 election platform released on Wednesday, prompting the Conservatives and NDP to cast doubt on whether it remains a priority for Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau. The Liberals have shot down this assertion, telling CTVNews.ca that the party remains “absolutely committed” to seeing the ban end. While other LGBTQ2S commitments made the cut, the blood ban is not mentioned once. It’s been a fraught file for the Liberals since first campaigning off of the commitment to outright eliminate the policy in 2015, seeing the government fighting a Canadian Human Rights Commission inquiry over the ban and deflecting responsibility to Health Canada. As the policy stands, Canadian Blood Services and Hema-Quebec have donor screening policies that prohibit gay and bisexual men, as well as some other folks in the LGBTQ2S+ community, from donating blood unless they have been abstinent for at least three months. […] Between 2013 and 2019, Canada’s blood donation policy has changed three times, gradually evolving from a five-year ban on giving blood to the current three-month deferral period.

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