Blood donations for the month of June were 50,000 lower than the Red Cross expected, yet gay men are still not allowed to donate under current FDA guidelines.
In protest of the outdated restrictions, Minnesota is hosting the state’s first national gay blood drive.
Fifty-two locations across the state today will participate in the event, including Memorial Blood Centers in Minneapolis.
According to KSTP, current FDA guidelines say that men who have had sexual relations with other men are ineligible to donate. Those who participate in today’s blood drive will take HIV tests—rather than actually donate—that will be sent to the FDA to prove their eligibility as donors and protest the current ban.
The blood drive is taking place today, Friday, July 12, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.