King's student council motions to ban CBS

Tuesday, April 7th, 2009

King’s University College students are getting bloody serious over a ‘homophobic’ policy.

Ryan Gauss, King’s University College Students’ Council president, motioned to ban Canadian Blood Services from King’s campus in response to its “men who have had sex with men” policy.

The motion, presented at Sunday’s meeting, was deferred to KUCSC’s next meeting in January while it awaits a response from CBS.

Gauss decided to move forward with the issue after Standing Against Queer Discrimination’s presentation at the University Students’ Council meeting last week.

“Without question, there is support there [to remove CBS from campus],” Gauss said.

He said he thought a ban would push CBS to change its policy, as well as encourage discussion throughout Western’s main campus and affiliate colleges.

“We can write and try to lobby CBS until the cows come home,” Gauss said. “We’re trying to put some pressure from a student organization.”

Joshua Ferguson, co-activist director of SAQD, was pleased with the motion.

“I think any sort of support that we receive at this point will have influence over main campus and over anyone’s feelings of the issue,” Ferguson said.

The USC agrees there are issues with the policy, but it decided to lobby at the federal and provincial levels, rather than ban CBS outright.

“We’re supporting the research agenda and we’re moving forward on that issue,” USC President Tom Stevenson said.

“Banning CBS on campus would do more harm than good.”

Cindy Graham, media spokesperson for CBS in Southern Ontario, did not think the KUCSC would be moving in a positive direction if it banned donor clinics from its campus.

“We would hope that they would work with us on any of their concerns that we could address,” she said.

Gauss noted the motion, if passed, would not harm the blood supply, since students could still donate blood off campus.

“We do not believe it is going to adversely impact the blood donations from our students at all.”

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