From: Michael Barnett OAM <⬛️⬛️⬛️@⬛️⬛️⬛️>
Date: Tue, 14 Nov 2023 at 18:46
Subject: Addressing blood donation injustice
To: Dr Carina Garland <email@example.com>
Cc: Gregory Storer <⬛️⬛️⬛️@⬛️⬛️⬛️>
We refer to your call in Parliament yesterday for residents of Chisholm to donate blood.
My husband and I live in Chisholm. We dearly want to be able to donate blood but we are prohibited from doing so because donation rules require we abstain from sex with each other for a period of three months prior to donating blood. Neither Gregory nor I have HIV. We take personal responsibility for our health and safety and do not expose ourselves to risky sexual situations. We are not a risk to the blood supply.
We note the Labor National Conference resolved to support the end of blanket blood donation bans from some within the LGBTI community as well as sex workers. We also note an end to the gay blood ban and the adoption of individual risk assessment has been publicly supported by the Queensland Health minister and Victorian state Liberal member, Matt Bach.
We urge you to advocate for reform to blood donation bans so that exclusion is determined by individual risk rather than the gender of your sexual partners. Doing so will increase the supply of much needed safe blood.
Michael Barnett & Gregory Storer
⬛️⬛️⬛️ Address redacted ⬛️⬛️⬛️
Dr GARLAND (Chisholm) (16:18): I recently donated blood at the Australian Red Cross Lifeblood Donor Centre in Mount Waverley. I thank the wonderful team at the Mount Waverley Donor Centre for inviting me to donate, and for their kindness and dedication to their very important work.
One in three Australians will need blood products in their lifetime, and that means we need a new blood donor every four minutes. One blood donation can save up to three lives. Blood or plasma donations are needed for things like cancer treatment, autoimmune condition, support after traumatic events, surgeries, and neonatal procedures. We have around 4,200 active blood donors in the Chisholm electorate, but thousands more people in our electorate are eligible to donate. People in Chisholm have saved up to 36,108 lives in the past 12 months alone by donating blood. I urge people in my community to become a regular blood donor if they are able to, and to add to this number of lives saved. If you can, please consider giving the gift of life, and donate blood.20231113-Hansard-Carina-Garland-MP-Chisholm-blood-donation