At the recent Circuit Assembly in our area (Nov 19/2016) a talk was given in the afternoon entitled “Jehovah Will Resurrect The Dead” it’s clear that the prohibition on blood is not going away anytime soon. Many of us here have expressed the hope that this death dealing policy would be softened or become a complete conscience matter. Not the case, JW’s are urged to not give in and to focus on the resurrection hope.
Recordings of these talks have been made available online. Start this video at about the 8 minute mark until around the 12 minute mark. The speaker makes the refusal of blood resoundingly clear and then offers a definition regarding the word “abstain” with an illustration.
All of the Circuit Assembly parts are available on this excellent website: http://avoidjw.org/2017-circuit-assembly/
I think this GB is going to double down on many of their teachings.