05 May 2014

Maybe BSA Should Go Back To Their Old Policy

A few months ago, we discussed a report about the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) plans of allowing openly gay youth scouts.

The proposal gained the approval of the roughly 1,400 voting members of the Scouts' National Council at a meeting in Texas last year and was welcome by several sectors.

However, the backlash is that not all are happy with that decision. For one, Walt Disney World will no longer subsidize local chapters of the Boy Scouts of America, in response to the national organization’s policy on gays.

The theme park has donated in the past to the Orlando-area Boy Scouts as part of its "Ears to You" program, which gives money to causes for which its employees volunteer. The Walt Disney Company’s “Standards of Business Conduct” includes protections against "harassment or discrimination" based on, amongst other things, "sex, sexual orientation, and gender identification."

"We recognize that many Scout Units have received financial support over the last several years from this grant opportunity and are sad to see it go," the Scouts' Central Florida Council Board President Robert Utsey wrote in an email to local members. "The National BSA Council has reached out to WDW to try to resolve the situation, however, according to WDW, their views do not currently align with the BSA and they are choosing to discontinue this level of support. We will continue to keep an open line of communication with them, but at this time, are unable to reverse their decision."

Every year, tens of thousands of LGBT people gather on the first weekend in June at Walt Disney World and other Orlando theme parks and resorts, making it one of the biggest LGBT group celebrations in the world. So, why withdrew their support to BSA now?

Maybe it's better for BSA to go back to their old policy and ban gays from joining because when this policy was enforced, they hardly faced any funding dilemma.