A Canadian woman is pressuring the country’s legislators to try to change organ donation laws after her son’s organs were rejected because he was gay.
Nancy Campana said one of her son’s wishes was to donate his organs after he died. When her 23-year-old son Rocky was taken off life support last year after he attempted suicide, Campana said doctor’s rejected her son’s donation based on his sexual orientation, CBC News reports.
“I was asked if he was a gay male and I said, ‘yes.’ And I was asked if he was a sexually active gay male or if he had a partner and I said, ‘yes’,” Campana told CBC News.
According to Campana, the family was told there were traces of drug use (one of the impediments for donating organs) in his son’s system. But doctors at the hospital said this could be a “false positive” due to the medication used to try to save Rocky’s life.
Canada’s health laws state that gay men who haven’t had sex with another man in the last five years can donate blood—the same rule applies for organ donations.
The Campanas have started a petition and are working with Member of the Canadian House of Commons Brian Masse to change the rules over organ donation and make it easier for gay men to donate.
Rocky attempted in August of 2012.
“When I got off the phone to relay that to both Rob and a lot of Rocky's friends ... many of them broke down,” she said. “The gay ones said, ‘Nancy, we can't donate blood; they're not going to take our organs.’”