Blood donation is very important. It’s an easy way to give back, and help save lives. Many people do it regularly, as a part of their responsibility toward the rest of mankind. One man used to give regularly, but may never do it again, because he refused to answer one question.
Leslie Sinclair, of Stirling, Scotland, has donated a lot of blood. In fact, in his 66 years, he has donated some 125 pints of the red life sustaining fluid, reports the Daily Mail. So when he recently went to donate, he wasn’t expecting any trouble.
While there, however, he was asked a new question: are you pregnant or have you been pregnant in the past six months? Mr. Sinclair objected to the question, pointing out what he felt was obvious, that he is a man in his 60’s and that question didn’t apply to him.
Sinclair said, “There is always a form to fill in and that’s fine – they tend to ask about medical conditions or diseases – and clearly that’s because the blood needs to be safe. This time around, there was a question I hadn’t seen before: ‘Are you pregnant, or have you been in the last six months?’ which required a yes or no answer,” reports the Daily Mail.
He continued, “I pointed out to the staff that it was impossible for me to be in that position but I was told that I would need to answer, otherwise I couldn’t give blood. I told them that was stupid and that if I had to leave, I wouldn’t be back, and that was it, I got on my bike and cycled away.”
“It is nonsensical and it makes me angry because there are vulnerable people waiting for blood, including children, and in desperate need of help. But they’ve been denied my blood because of the obligation to answer a question that can’t possibly be answered,” Sinclair lamented.
As backdrop for this incident, National Health Service England had just launched a campaign to recruit a million more blood donors over the next five years after numbers fell during the pandemic, reports the Daily Mail. The Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service (SNBTS) began a drive earlier in the month to find 16,000 new donors in the coming year.
In response to Mr. Sinclair’s concerns, Professor Marc Turner, director of SNBTS, said, “We appreciate the support of each and every one of our donor community and thank Mr. Sinclair for his commitment over a long number of years. Whilst pregnancy is only a relevant question to those whose biological sex or sex assigned at birth is female, sex assigned at birth is not always visually clear to staff.
Turner continued, “As a public body we take cognisance (sic) of changes in society around how such questions may be asked without discrimination and have a duty to promote inclusiveness – therefore all donors are now asked the same questions.”
This person summed it up best with just one word: “Madness.”
It seems that they don’t need blood that badly across the pond, if they will turn a 66 year old man away because he won’t answer as to whether he is pregnant. As he said, that’s just stupid. Have those who insist on being “inclusive” lost all common sense?