A Tasmanian gay man has lost his discrimination case against the Australian Red Cross Blood Service.

The Tasmanian Anti-Discrimination Tribunal ruled today that the gay blood ban did not amount to direct or indirect discrimination. However, it also made a number of observations suggesting the policy be reviewed as further data on blood risk becomes available.

“In any event, the conduct of the Red Cross was required by law and so even if he had been subjected to discrimination the conduct of the Red Cross could not be unlawful,” the decision stated.

Michael Cain, who brought the action after his offer to donate blood was refused, said he was disappointed.

“This was a knife-edge decision in which the Tribunal erred on the side of caution, but given how much of my case it agreed with, I am confident the next time this matter goes to court the outcome will be a new policy,” he said in a statement.

“The Red Cross’s absurd claims that all gay sex is very high risk because gay men are all sexually irresponsible and promiscuous are now officially dead and buried.”

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