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US: Dismissed lesbian den mother takes petition to Scouts

PinkNews Staff Writer July 18, 2012
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A den mother dismissed by the Boy Scouts of America because she is a lesbian has taken a 300,000 signature petition to the organisation’s headquarters.

Jennifer Tyrrell, who was the leader of a Bridgeport, Ohio, Tiger Cub den, was dismissed in April. She had been den mother for the group for a year, taking the position when her seven-year-old son Cruz joined.

Ms Tyrrell says a local Cubmaster knew of her sexual orientation and assured her it would not be a problem when she joined.

The Boy Scouts of America bans gay members, volunteers and staff.

As a private organisation, the organisation has adopted positions since 1991 which state that homosexuality is “inconsistent with the Scout Oath that a Scout be morally straight and in the Scout Law that a Scout be clean in word and deed”.

This week, it confirmed it would retain its ban on homosexuality.

Delivering the petition, Ms Tyrrell told CNN: “Along with those 300,000 signatures were tens of thousands of comments from scouts – current scouts, former scouts, across the board – who disagree with the decision to keep this policy in place.”

She added: “I don’t think it was their intention to personally disrespect me. Unfortunately, it’s just a policy that we need to update a little bit.

“I love Scouts as everybody probably knows by now. Cruz loves Scouts and we don’t have any ill feeling toward the Scouts. We just wanted to be included.”

Related topics: Americas, Boy Scouts of America, jennifer tyrrell, Scouts

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