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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2017 Week 04 Hansard (Thursday, 30 March 2017) . . Page.. 1390 ..

2½ months to ensure that it is harmless. France plans to review these policies later this year with the intention of eventually removing all bans and deferral periods.

Likewise, Canada’s government is currently delivering on an election commitment to invest $3 million on blood donation research with the intention of eventually eliminating its current 12-month deferral period. In Spain and Italy, and in Chile, Mexico and other South American countries, all donors, regardless of sexuality, can donate blood. They are simply all required to fill out a questionnaire called an individual risk assessment, based on assessing the risk of their recent sexual behaviour, which is then used to exclude the most at-risk donors.

In 2014, Red Cross Australia self-recommended a reduced deferral period of six months, and this would have been a step in the right direction. Unfortunately, the TGA rejected this recommendation. An individual risk-based approach would reduce the deferral period. I think it is something that we should consider. It would maintain the integrity of the blood supply, yet allow gay and bisexual men to donate blood. Gay men in long-term monogamous relationships are at lower risk of HIV transmission, so consideration should be given to treating them differently from people who are engaging in risky behaviour.

The most obvious effect of an individual risk-based approach is enabling a numerically significant cohort of potential donors to help save more lives while maintaining the integrity and safety of the blood supply. I hope that the TGA and the Red Cross bring forward a review of donation guidelines on the basis of ongoing technological medical developments in this area.

Burgmann Anglican School fair

MR MILLIGAN (Yerrabi) (4.53): It gives me great pleasure to rise today to commend the friends, parents, students and staff of Burgmann Anglican School for volunteering so much of their time and making such an effort in organising a wonderful, fun, successful community fair last Friday afternoon. Widely dubbed as one of the most popular events of the Gungahlin community calendar, the fair delivers an enjoyable afternoon of family entertainment and showcases the wonderful community spirit of the electorate of Yerrabi.

The annual community fair is Burgmann’s single biggest fundraiser and is organised solely by volunteers. It boasts an estimated 3,000 attendees annually and sells over 6,000 raffle tickets before the day of the fair alone.

Over the years, the Burgmann parents and friends association have raised funds to enhance and strengthen the education experience for students and teachers alike. Funds raised during previous events have directly contributed to the purchase of books for Valley and Forde libraries, leadership training for students, science and maths resources, guest speakers for students and teachers, a long-term lease on a 22-seat school bus, school solar panels, shade sails, a new sound system for the Forde campus hall, outdoor seating, musical instruments, renovations to the school cafe, iPads, and other enrichment resources.

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