California State Sheriffs’ Association

Currently, more than 123,000 people are waiting for a life-saving organ transplant in the United States; more than 22,000 are waiting in California. Due to a lack of donors, 21 patients die every day because the organ they needed didn’t come in time. The need in our multicultural communities is great. Nationwide, minorities represent 58 percent of organ transplant candidates and more than 64 percent of those awaiting kidney transplants. In California, Latinos make up 39 percent of those waiting for life-saving transplants, Asians/Pacific Islanders 20 percent, and African Americans another 12 percent. Nearly 80 percent of those waiting for a kidney transplant are people of color. Nationwide, non-whites comprise nearly 58 percent of individuals on the national organ transplant waiting list and 32 percent of living and deceased donors, while making up 36 percent of the national population. This high proportion is due to a higher incidence of diabetes and hypertension in non-white populations. If you want to designate yourself as a donor, you must either register online or indicate “YES!” next time you renew your driver’s license. Taking a couple minutes to register as an organ and tissue donor can mean a lifetime to someone else. Thank you!