Boy Scouts considering ending ban on gays

Boy Scouts considering ending ban on gays

The Boy Scouts of America could end its decades-long policy of banning gay scouts or leaders.

Sources close to the organization on the national level say that the new policy is under discussion and would leave local sponsoring organizations free to decide for themselves if they wish to admit gay scouts.

“The chartered organizations that oversee and deliver scouting would accept membership and select leaders consistent with their organization’s mission, principles or religious beliefs,” according to Deron Smith, a spokesman for the Boy Scouts’ national organization told NBC News.

If adopted by the Boy Scouts of America board of directors, it would represent a profound change on an issue that has been controversial for several years. One case was even argued in front of the U.S. Supreme Court.

The discussion of a potential change in policy is nearing its final stages, according to outside scouting supporters. If approved, the change could be announced as early as next week, after the BSA’s national board holds a regularly scheduled meeting.

Last summer, the Boy Scouts affirmed its policy that banned gay members and went so far as to say that it was “the best policy for the organization.”

But local troops across the country have protested the ban and asked the national organization to reconsider. The issue was even a part of the last presidential election, and both President Barack Obama and his Republican challenger Mitt Romney suggested that the Boy Scouts should allow gay members

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