The Boy Scouts of America Executive Committee has proposed a resolution that would establish a nondiscrimination policy ending the longstanding discriminatory ban on gay Scouts, but has kept a policy that discriminates against gay and lesbian parents and Scout leaders. The resolution, which proposes a policy that, “no youth may be denied membership in the Boy Scouts of America on the basis of sexual orientation or preference alone,” is national in scope, as opposed to a previous approach that would have allowed local sponsoring organizations to make their own decisions.
The resolution will face a vote by 1,400 leaders of the Boy Scouts of America during the National Council Meeting, May 22-24.
“It is good news that BSA leadership is open to ending the ban on gay Scouts, but this resolution must go further,” said Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin. “Parents and adults of good moral character, regardless of sexual orientation, should be able to volunteer their time to mentor the next generation of Americans. What message does this resolution send to the gay Eagle Scout who, as an adult, wants to continue a lifetime of scouting by becoming a troop leader?”
Unanswered in the resolution is the issue of employment discrimination by BSA. Currently, the BSA job application for “professional commission” explicitly says gays need not apply. The application, which comes from the BSA’s national office and appears to be in use across the country, reads: "The Boy Scouts of America will not employ atheists, agnostics, known or avowed homosexuals.”
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