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EU Justice suggests the French relax the blood donation ban on Gays

(Blogmensgo, gay blog of 11 May 2015) In a judgment of 29 April 2015, the Court of Justice of the European Union validates the ban by France gays from donating blood, suggesting that France will show a more flexible attitude towards them.

A blood red justice. © Court of Justice of the European Union.
A blood red justice. © Court of Justice of the European Union.

More than nine months after hearing the parties, the European Court has delivered a judgment that attempts to run with the hare and cabbage.

The decision taken in this case C-528/13 (summary available in EN | ES | DE | IT |UK ) stated initially that "permanent exclusion from blood donation for men who have sex with men can be, given the situation in the Member State concerned, justified ". But as soon as it is stated "effective detection techniques [HIV] or less restrictive methods to ensure a high level of protection of the recipients of health are lacking" in France.

The European Directive of 22 March 2004 permanently banned blood donation by "people whose sexual behavior puts them at high risk of acquiring severe infectious diseases transmitted by blood." The judgment of 29 April asking the Strasbourg administrative court to ensure that the alleged risk of contamination is strong enough not to fall on the European principle of non-discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Epidemiological data provided by France in that case relate only to the period 2003-2008. In addition, the court considers in its judgment, permanent exclusion from blood donation against gays seems to be disproportionate to the risks ("the principle of proportionality may not be respected").

The Strasbourg administrative court must therefore ensure that firstly , there is no "effective techniques" that can better protect recipients, and secondly , there is no "less restrictive methods which the permanent exclusion "against gays.

And the Court of Justice of the European Union to suggest that it is better "to identify more precisely the risky sexual behavior" that stigmatize groups of people solely because of their sexual orientation.

The decision is not final, since it refers the parties to the French court, so the Strasbourg court.

Meanwhile, April 3, 2015, the National Assembly unanimously adopted an amendment saying that "no one can be excluded from donating blood because of his sexual orientation." The French Health Minister, Marisol Touraine, then confirmed that health prior questionnaires would soon focus on sexual risk behavior and not on the sexual orientation of potential donors.

This article has been translated from our French blog, to view the original, click here.

Philca & Matt / MensGo
(via the entire French press of 29 April 2015)

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