The Boy Scouts of America is considering an end to its long-standing ban on openly gay members and scout masters, NBC News reported Monday.
The discussion comes weeks after the organization rejected an Eagle rank applicationfrom an openly gay California teen—the latest incident in several years of controversy over the policy.
According to NBC, individual sponsoring organizations—such as churches and schools—would be able to decide whether the ban would still apply to their groups.
“The chartered organizations that oversee and deliver scouting would accept membership and select leaders consistent with their organization’s mission, principles or religious beliefs,” Boy Scouts spokesman Deron Smith told NBC.
In Enumclaw, Edward Hechter, a leader with Troop 422, said the local committee is also discussing the issue. "Troop 422 is chartered through the local Kiwanis organization here in Enumclaw, and we are proud to operate with values consistent with theirs," Hechter wrote in an email to Patch. "The 12 points of the Boy Scout Law guide the way Scoutmasters work with Scouts. We believe that these 12 points should guide all the interactions Scouts and Scoutmasters have within the world."
The 12 points require that a Scout is:
Hechter did not indicate how the local troop might respond but said as policies and guidelines are finalized on the national level, "we will work with our charter organization (The Kiwanis) to evaluate how these changes affect our organization (if at all), and enable us to accomplish Scouting’s Goals of helping young people build character within the Kiwanis values of living the Golden Rule in all human relationships."
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