Mexico has reportedly become the first North American country to end its ban on blood donations from gay and bisexual men.
Blabbeando reports that new blood donation regulations came into effect Dec. 25, which screen donors based on sexual history rather than sexual orientation, meaning that HIV and Hepatitis negative gay and bisexual men with safe-sex histories may donate blood provided they are not sex workers or injecting drug users.
The report also notes that Mexico's National Council to Prevent Discrimination (CONAPRED) has released a statement both confirming and applauding the new regulations.
The statement reads in part:
"...From now on, medical/scientific criteria will be used to identify pathogens in the blood and the focus will be turned to risky behaviors rather than social groups.
In making these discriminatory distinctions, the [previous] norm explicitly violated the prohibition against discrimination present in the Constitution and the Federal Law to Prevent and Eliminate Discrimination, as well as Article 24 of the American Convention on Human Rights and Article 26 of the International Civil and Political Rights Treaty, among other international instruments of law, which establish that every person is equal before the law regardless of any condition."
As South Florida Gay News pointed out, Argentina's congress has approved a similar bill, which is set to go before the country's senate in 2013.