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Boy Scouts of America committee backs lifting ban on gay adults

PinkNews.co.uk Staff Writer July 13, 2015

The executive committee of the Boy Scouts of America has backed a resolution that would end the organisaton’s blanket ban on gay leaders. It would mean that individual Scout units could set their own policy.

In a statement, the organisation said: “This change allows Scouting’s members and parents to select local units, chartered to organizations with similar beliefs, that best meet the needs of their families.” It added: “This change would also respect the right of religious chartered organizations to continue to choose adult leaders whose beliefs are consistent with their own.”

“This change allows Scouting’s members and parents to select local units, chartered to organizations with similar beliefs, that best meet the needs of their families. This change would also respect the right of religious chartered organizations to continue to choose adult leaders whose beliefs are consistent with their own.”

Following a long discussion, in 2014 the BSA changed its policy to allow openly gay youth members, but maintained a ban on “open or avowed” gay adult staff or volunteers.

However, at a Scouts meeting in May, national president Robert Gates suggested the ban was “unsustainable”, and could lead to costly court cases.

The decision announced today was ratified by all 17 members of its executive committee and will become official policy if it is backed by the 80 member strong National Executive Board on July 27.

Under the proposal, local units will be able to select leaders without regard to their sexual orientation.

The Executive also appeared to nod towards the Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage, citing “social, political, and legal changes taking place in our country”as a reason why “the current adult leadership policy cannot be sustained”.

In April, the an openly gay Eagle Scout leader was appointed in New York despite the ban.

The British Scouting Association has welcomed LGBT members and leaders for many years and actively participates in pride events.

More: Americas, Boy Scouts of America, scouting, Scouts, US

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