Russian Lawmaker: Ban Gays From Giving Blood

But he offers free 'conversion therapy'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 27, 2013 2:39 AM CDT
Russian Lawmaker: Ban Gays From Giving Blood
A new Russian law that bans "propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations" has sparked calls for a boycott of the Sochi Olympics.   (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)

As a follow-up to Russia's internationally condemned anti-gay law, a senior lawmaker wants to bring back the country's ban on gay people giving blood. Mikhail Dyegtyaryov says the move would help stem the country's HIV/AIDS epidemic, reports Reuters, though experts say the vast majority of the country's infections come from either dirty needles or heterosexual sex. Russia lifted its ban on gay men giving blood several years ago, but similar bans are still in place in many other countries including the US, Russia Today notes. (US lawmakers have recently sought to reverse the "outdated" policy.)

Dyegtyaryov told a press conference that in addition to the blood ban, Russia's parliament is working on a plan to give homosexuals free "conversion therapy" that would allow them to "return to normal life and become heterosexuals." He added that he was not opposed to gay pride rallies, as long as they were held "at night, with flashlights and without amplifiers." A leading Russian gay rights advocate says she regularly donates blood and was asked for a donation the same day Dyegtyaryov made his comments. "Next time I'll say—I'm sorry, I'm a lesbian, I don't deserve to give blood for your family members," she tweeted. "Keep looking." (Read more Russia stories.)

We use cookies. By Clicking "OK" or any content on this site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. Read more in our privacy policy.
Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.