Partnering with Egale Canada Human Rights Trust, we created Blood Surrogates, a platform designed to educate Canadians about the ban against men who have sex with men (MSM) from donating blood and build support for its removal. Ultimately, the objective was not only to raise awareness of the ban’s existence, but to ignite a conversation that puts pressure on Health Canada to end the ban that prevents MSM from donating blood once and for all.
The platform was mainly directed at the LGBTQ2+ community and its supporters, as well as frequent donors to Canadian Blood Services. Each group was served customized messaging and directed back to our website where they could formalize their pledge or ask their social media followers to donate on their behalf. We tracked every request made by MSM in order to show Canadian Blood Services how much blood they were missing by refusing to re-evaluate the ban.
In May 2019, almost a year following the launch of our initiative, Health Canada announced they would reduce this ban from a one-year abstinence period to three months, demonstrating a significant step in the right direction to removing the ban completely.