‘There is no such thing as gay blood’ says MLA

Sinn Fein MLA for Foyle, Maeve McLaughlin and Health Minister, Jim Wells.

Sinn Fein MLA for Foyle, Maeve McLaughlin and Health Minister, Jim Wells.

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Sinn Féin MLA Maeve McLaughlin has called on new Health Minister Jim Wells to abandon legal challenges against the donation of blood by gay men.

This follows yet another court ruling which is again critical of the former Health Minister Edwin Poots who continued to impose such a ban despite it being lifted in Britain.

The Foyle MLA and Chair of the Assembly’s Health Committee said the ruling was proof of discrimination against gay men.

“This ruling is yet more proof of the irrational and discriminatory nature of the ban on gay men giving blood.

“It is ever more evident given this further ruling against Edwin Poots and by extension the department of health that this decision was wrong.

“Over the past number of years there have been several court rulings, which have been critical of the former health minister’s stance on this issue.”

Ms. McLaughlin went on to call upon the incumbent health minister, Jim Wells, to “scrap this ban”.

“The new minister, Jim Wells should now scrap this ban and stop wasting vital public money appealing these court decisions.

“There is no such thing as gay blood, it’s just blood.

“It seems that for elements of political unionism that their apparent allegiance to all things British stops short of adopting progressive equality legislation whether it be the donation of blood, marriage equality or adoption rights.”