Minnie Gonzalez

Red Cross Blood Donation Statement

Good morning, my name is Minnie Gonzalez and I represent the 3rd district in Hartford.  As Chair of the Black and Latino Caucus, I join Speaker Amann and all of those present from the Red Cross in support of this outreach in the Hispanic community.

This effort at providing Spanish-Speaking staff will hopefully increase communication and that I believe will positively affect donor participation.  Blood drives with Spanish-speaking staff and providing informational materials in Spanish will help those people who only speak Spanish.  The community will also learn more about the importance of donating blood and the need to increase participation.  I do not believe this type of outreach has been done in the past.

Almost everyone will need blood at some point in his or her lifetime, and these blood drives will provide an opportunity for educating people on giving blood – not only once or twice, but regularly as the need is ongoing.  We have to decrease the need to import and become more self-reliant as a community to provide a supply of blood on a daily basis. And, because there is a great need for type O blood, and Latinos tend to be mostly type O, it is very important to do this type of outreach work.

I believe this targeting of the community to increase awareness and participation will be successful and will help Connecticut hospitals maintain the supply of blood necessary to meet patient needs.  I therefore am in support of this effort and I will work with Speaker Amann to see it through this legislative session.  Thank you.