TORONTO — An upcoming “Will & Grace” episode will delve into the issue of gay men being restricted from donating blood.
Toronto-born star Eric McCormack, who plays gay lawyer Will Truman on the sitcom, says the episode will likely air in a few months on Global and NBC.
It will see his character giving “some tremendous, serious speeches.”
“We get into the idea that a gay man giving his blood is still an uphill battle,” McCormack said in a recent phone interview from Los Angeles, after filming part of the episode earlier that day.
“There is a law in place that a gay man has to be, and state that, he is celibate for a year and a straight person does not have to do that. So that’s an issue that we’re getting into that doesn’t get much airplay.”
In Canada, the U.S. and several other countries, men who have sex with other men are only allowed to donate blood if they remain celibate for a year.
Various politicians and LGBTQ advocates say the restrictions are discriminatory, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has vowed to examine the policy.
“We’re working on something that is about that that that idea of tainted blood is still something the gay community has to deal with,” said McCormack.
“And I’ve got a couple of great speeches about just how tiring it is to still be fighting these fights and the misinformation.”
“Will & Grace,” which airs Thursdays, recently covered another serious news topic — the .MeToo movement. The episode focused on the lead character Grace, played by Debra Messing, and a revelation she makes to her father.
McCormack’s other series, “Travelers,” launches its third season on Dec. 14 on Netflix.