Harrisburg – Today, the Boy Scouts of America’s National Council voted to end its ban on gay scouts. In response, Ted Martin, Equality Pennsylvania Executive Director, released the following statement:

“The decision to lift the ban is the first time the organization has welcomed openly gay youth — an important step in the right direction. The Boy Scouts of America is more in touch with modern America today than it was yesterday. But the Boy Scouts of America still has a long way to go before it will regain the trust of its donors, members, and the American people, a majority of which think this ban must end not only for kids, but for adults too.

Maintaining the ban on gay adults sends a dangerous message to young people that gay adults, like their friends’ parents or even their teachers, can’t be trusted. By banning gay parents, the Boy Scouts are giving credence to long-debunked myths and stereotypes that promote fear, misunderstanding, discrimination, and hate.

The Boy Scouts of today are going to be the leaders of tomorrow. We should be teaching our leaders the importance of diversity and respect.”

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