BATON ROUGE, LA (WVLA) — A Baton Rouge college student is upset he cannot donate blood. Blood banks will take his blood because he's gay. When Jesse Tate decided to to give blood, he had no idea that his blood was not accepted.
"And then they were going through all of my paperwork and you know checking everything, and then they told me that since I had same-sex relations I was not able to give blood at the time," Tate said. "So I basically walked out of the trailer right after I walked in, which made me feel kind of bad about myself. I was embarrassed and really disappointed that I couldn't give blood."
The American Medical Association is disappointed too. They said the anti-gay donation policy is outdated and unfair. Dr. Kobler from AMA said:
"This new policy urges a federal policy change to ensure blood donation bans or deferrals are applied to donors according to their individual level of risk and are not based on sexual orientation alone."
"I am excited about that," Tate said. They definitely need to. It's been a while and they have tests now that they can do to check for everything."
Tate said he felt embarrassed when his blood was denied. Now, he's happy there's hope.
"It's like a first step for equal rights," Tate said. "Well not maybe a first step, but another step that will hopefully lead to more equal rights."
The American Medical Association is urging the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to change its policy. At this point, the FDA has not responded.