Red Cross' Rejection of Gay Student Sparks Protest

WINFIELD, Kan. (AP) _ A dispute over a gay student's efforts to donate blood is dividing the Winfield High School student body.

At a Red Cross blood drive, some students wore patches in support of Josh Turner, who was not allowed to donate blood because he is gay.

Other students responded by wearing patches in support of the blood drive.

Superintendent Marvin Estes called a school assembly to discuss the issue. He says Turner was rejected because of a federal rule, not because of discrimination at the school.

The Food and Drug Administration says any male who has had sex
with another male since 1977 cannot donate blood. They are at
increased risk of carrying HIV, hepatitis and other infections that can be transmitted through transfusions.

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