Israel's rescue service Magen David Adom
has turned down a blood donation from a man in Haifa, telling him it was because he is registered on their computers as gay.
And while Dekel Hasid, 30, says there is nothing wrong with being gay, he is actually straight - and even married.
Hasid is used to giving blood on a regular basis, without any difficulties, but the decision to register him as a homosexual man means that he is placed in an at-risk group, and therefore his blood is not wanted.
"I give blood every few months, and until now there has never been a problem," Hasid told Ynet on Tuesday. "Yesterday I went to the donation center in Haifa and suddenly I was told that there was a note on the computer and (the staffer) would have to clarify the issue. She came back and told me that they couldn't take my blood.
"I tried to tell her that I was straight, and had never had sex with another man, but it didn't help. She refused to take my blood."
According to Magen David Adom, gay men in Israel cannot give blood. If they do decide to donate, their blood is not used to save lives, but is either disposed of or used in research. There have been several debates on this policy recently, but both the Health Ministry and MDA have decided to continue with the ban.
"There is nothing wrong with being gay, but I am straight and have never slept with a man," Hasid said. "I have been married to a woman for a decade, and have never said or written down that I have had sex with a man. I don't know what made them decide to do this, be it my walk, way of speaking or the fact that I had a gay friend with me the last time I donated blood. but they decided of their own accord to mark me down as gay."
Magen David Adom declined answer to a question on how they label the sexuality of blood donors. The director of Magen David Adom Blood Service, Prof. Ayelet Shenar, told Ynet that the questionnaire given to donors includes a list of all the groups whose members are disqualified from giving blood for transfusions, without giving a specific reason. She said that Hasid's case would be investigated.
Earlier this month, Israel's Ethiopian community was outraged when Knesset Member Pnina Tamano-Shata was refused a blood donation on the grounds she had a "special kind of Jewish-Ethiopian blood." Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
told Tamano-Shata at the time that he would look into the incident.