For Immediate Release: February 11, 2013
Contact: Diane Gramley 1.814.271.9078 or 1.814.437.5355
Linda Harvey 1.614.442.7998
Gary Glenn 1.989.600.4242
Boy Scouts’ National Office Confuses Issue-They Can’t Have it Both Ways
(Harrisburg) — The American Family Association of Pennsylvania (AFA of PA) recently did a careful review of Boy Scouts’ national website and it raised questions. After the last two bruising weeks in the life of the Boy Scouts (BSA) why would their model council non-discrimination policy include the words “sexual orientation?” The date 2011 also raises questions.
“I was taken aback by the language of the non-discrimination policy offered as a model for Boy Scout Councils. It seems such language would cause confusion within the ranks. It raises many questions for me, but the main ones are who okayed the language? Is there someone beyond board members working to undermine the Scouts?” questioned Diane Gramley, president of the AFA of PA.
On May 29, 2003 Philadelphia’s Cradle of Liberty Scout Council changed its non-discrimination policy to include “sexual orientation” and within days they had to backtrack under pressure from BSA National. A June 9, 2003 memo from then Chief Scout Executive, Roy L. Williams, to all Scout Executives said in part, “As a condition of their charter, no local council is permitted to depart from BSA membership policies.” More recently a Cub Scout pack in Cloverly, Maryland added “sexual orientation” to its non-discrimination policy and BSA National also forced them to remove it.
As of February 7, 2013, why does the BSA National website have this language as a model non-discrimination policy? It can be found by clicking here and clicking on “Council Nondiscrimination Policy 2011.
“The ______________ Council of the Boy Scouts of America operates in compliance with all relevant laws, codes, ordinances, statutes, and regulations. The council does not unlawfully discriminate with respect to employment, volunteer participation, or the provision of services, on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, ancestry, or disability status, veteran status, marital status, or political affiliation. The council policy forbids sexual harassment. The council has a right to exclude membership to those whose behavior is inappropriate for the defined mission and values of the council.”
“Those who support the ban on homosexual leaders and members to protect the integrity of the Boy Scouts of America and the young boys placed in their charge want answers. Why is the inclusion of “sexual orientation” in the model Council Nondiscrimination Policy? The BSA has some explaining to do,” concluded Gramley.
Linda Harvey, president of Mission America responded, “How compromised is the Boy Scout organization already, if it’s providing pro-homosexual policy guidance to local councils? The embrace of homosexuality may already be a done deal at the staff and board level of BSA. Sadly, parents would be advised to think twice about keeping their sons in the Boy Scouts.”
Gary Glenn, president of the American Family Association of Michigan and an Eagle Scout, said the model policy’s inclusion of the term “sexual orientation” indicates that some BSA staff “presumably with the executive staff’s or board’s knowledge and direction, have been working for years toward undermining the Scouts’ century-old moral code from within.”
“Major Scouting sponsors and millions of parents have trusted the BSA board and staff to be both trustworthy and loyal in upholding the Scout oath to be ‘morally straight.’ The longstanding ideals of Scouting remain trustworthy. Some members of the current BSA board and staff. obviously, no longer are. They should be replaced as soon as possible with individuals who are actually committed to upholding, not undermining, the values that have made Scouting strong for over a century.”
Glenn is also the father of three Eagle Scouts, and his wife, a former Cub Scout den leader and troop committee member, recently completed the BSA’s advanced Wood Badge leadership training.
The Scouting Legal Defense Fund chaired by former Reagan Administration Attorney General Ed Meese called AFA-Michigan “by far the most active independent group defending Scouting at the state level.” AFA-Michigan in 2001 donated $4,000 to the Grand Rapids-area Scout council after it lost funding of that amount from a local United Way chapter unhappy about the Scouts’ moral code.
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