Clayre Sessoms is a man who identifies as a woman and who says the Canadian Blood Services turned him away because he is transgender. According to Sessoms, the incident occurred on Wednesday (May 14), when he went to the CBS clinic on Dunsmuir Street in downtown Vancouver. After Sessoms disclosed that he is transitioning from male to female and taking estrogen, the nurse screening him asked if she has undergone sex reassignment surgery (he hasn’t). Then the nurse left to consult with a supervisor. Upon the nurse’s return, Sessoms was told that he couldn’t give blood. Sessoms said the nurse confirmed both that the rejection was due to his gender identity and that CBS doesn’t have a policy on transgender donors.
Sessoms noted that CBS previously allowed him to donate blood in September 2013, before he began transitioning, and in November 2013, when he also disclosed that he was transitioning. CBS has a ban on donations from men who have had sex with men within the last five years, but Sessoms identifies as a married lesbian (he’s a straight man).