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Hundreds expected for first National Gay Blood Drive Friday

Updated: Friday, July 11, 2014
Hundreds expected for first National Gay Blood Drive Friday story image

(NEWSCHANNEL 3) - Friday, hundreds are expected to show up for the first National Gay Blood Drive.

60 cities across the nation will be participating, including Kalamazoo and Grand Rapids.

It's a drive designed to send a message.

Since 1983, the Food and Drug Administration has banned gay and bisexual men from donating blood.

The policy was put in place at a time the blood supply could not be tested for several viruses, including HIV and AIDS.

Now, blood is more easily screened for viruses through DNA testing.

The national blood drive hopes to change that policy.

"It's a nice way to know that you are making a difference," said donor Cara Nicolas.

"It is truly saving a life or three," said deferred donor Josh Neumeyer. "Of course, with the deferral for gay and bisexual men, I can't give anymore."

Those who can't donate are encouraged to bring a friend to donate in their place.

If you would like to give blood Friday, you can head to the American Red Cross in Kalamazoo or Grand Rapids from noon to 6:00 p.m.

U.S. | World News

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