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Blood Donations After Orlando Shooting

In the Aftermath of the Orlando Tragedy, Hundreds Line Up to Donate Blood

In the wake of Sunday's deadly mass shooting at Orlando, FL, nightclub Pulse, the city's blood shortage has inspired hundreds to line up at nearby blood banks to offer their own. Videos coming out of Florida show an outpouring of potential donors waiting to give blood at donation centers, showing an inspiring look at "the real Orlando" amid the tragedy.

However, the strict FDA guidelines regarding blood donation have struck a painful chord with many would-be donors who are unable to play their part due to their sexual orientation. Sexually active gay men are barred from donating blood within a year of sexual activity, which means that many of the friends and allies of those killed or injured at Pulse (a popular gay nightclub) are unable to donate.

Despite the Orlando blood shortage and the surrounding controversy, the FDA guidelines are still being held by local donation centers.


Instead of providing much-needed blood, many of those unable to donate are doing their part by spreading information about Florida donation centers and other ways to provide aid in this tragic time.

In dark times like these, one quote from children's TV host Fred Rogers (also known as Mr. Rogers) seems particularly relevant: "When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.'" In every tragedy, there are helpers — and the lines at blood banks in Florida prove it.

Image Source: Twitter user erinonTV
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