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Only Two Scout Councils in The United States have Defied The National Policy


Opening Statement From Scouting for All

"The Peidmont Council in Peidmont California and the Cradle of Liberty Council in Philadelphia, adopted their anti-discrimination policies by the executive board, which is the policy making body of each council. So these councils are serious about their stand and are not attempting to manipulate anyone to secure funding. While the Peidmont council included
atheists, the Cradle of Liberty Council did not. Scouting for All cannot support the Cradle of Liberty Council until it is all inclusive. Atheist children should not be denied scouting. There are very few scouting associations in the world that have policies of exclusion. In fact out of 152 scouting associations about 98% of them allow gays, atheists and girls in scouting. So the Cradle of Liberty has taken a step towards inclusion but it has a few more steps to go."

Scott Cozza, Pres.
Scouting for All

Philadelphia Boy Scouts won't exclude gays

Thursday, May 29, 2003 Posted: 11:21 AM EDT (1521 GMT)
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PHILADELPHIA, Pennsylvania (AP) -- The nation's third largest Boy Scout council expanded its nondiscrimination policy to include sexual orientation, defying the national group's anti-gay stance. The board of the Cradle of Liberty Council, which has 87,000 members in Philadelphia and two neighboring counties, voted unanimously this month to make the change after discussions with gay activists and other community leaders that began two years ago. "We disagree with the national stance, and
we're not comfortable with the stated national policy," council Chairman David H. Lipson Jr. said. The code of the national Boy Scouts of America organization requires members to be "morally straight," though no written rule specifically addresses homosexuality. A call to Scout headquarters in Irving, Texas, was not immediately returned Thursday. Its national convention was beginning Thursday in Philadelphia. In 2000, the national group went to the Supreme Court to defend a ban on gay
leaders, saying that as a private organization, it is free to choose its members however it wishes. The Scouts won the case, but the battle led some businesses and public schools to reconsider their ties with the organization, and at least 50 United Way offices pulled their contributions. A few months after the court victory, gay activists and others objected to funding by the United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania for a youth development program run by the Boy Scouts, even though the program was open to anyone. "The reality is, we did get some pressure from other groups who said, 'This program may not discriminate,
but this organization does,"' said Christine James-Brown, president of the regional United Way. The United Way organized the talks that led to the council's nondiscrimination statement this month. "There was anger about that (national) policy. I think people set that aside and said, 'Let's try to make it work in this community,"' James-Brown said. In July 2001, the Boston Minuteman Council approved a bylaw that effectively allows gays who don't reveal their sexual orientation.



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