Scouts' ranks drop after gay youth accepted

2014-02-13 12:12

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

kalahari.com

Dallas - The Boy Scouts of America said on Wednesday that it lost 6% of its membership after a year in which it announced it would accept openly gay boys for the first time.

The organisation's national leadership voted in May to make that change, while continuing to exclude gay leaders. That angered conservatives and some members who consider homosexuality a sin and a violation of Scouting values.

BSA spokesperson Deron Smith said on Wednesday that the 2013 decline could partially be attributed to that change.

"There are many factors that go into a family's decision to join Scouting, and it's impossible to point to any single factor that influences our membership numbers," Smith said in an email. "This includes, but is not limited to, the limited amount of discretional time and parents wanting relevant programs for their kids."

With nearly 2.5 million youth and almost one million adults, Scouting remains a significant force in communities across the United States, even though its membership has slowly but steadily declined over the last decade.

BSA made the change to accept openly gay youth as it faced mounting public pressure in a nation that is growing more accepting of gays and gay marriage.

Zach Wahls, an Eagle Scout who founded the advocacy group Scouts for Equality, said he's heard of no incidents of potential discrimination since the policy went into effect. He said suggestions last year of a mass exodus due to the policy change appear to have been overblown.

The century-old organisation has faced a longer-term challenge to stay relevant with today's youth and their parents. Smith said the organisation recorded a 4% membership decline between 2011 and 2012, with similar declines in some of the years during the last decade.

- AP
Read more on:    bsa  |  us  |  gay rights
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
14 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Wine
 

You HAVE to see this MTB Tsunami Fip!

You might not know what a Tsunami Flip is, but just watching this will turn your eyes into saucers. Check out this first-ever MTB Tsunami Flip in contest here.

 
 

Where were you when you last felt alive?

Bear Grylls’ top 10 things kids should do outdoors
Mountain unicycling – say WHAT?
Top tips to ensure you’re running right
Stand-up paddle boarding a great workout

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Jobs in Western Cape region

JNR DRAUGHTSMAN

Cape Winelands
Persona Staff
R15 000 - R18 000 Per Month

Intermediate Web Developer

Cape Town
E-Merge IT Recruitment
R300 000 - R350 000 Per Year

Senior Electrical Building Services Engineer

Cape Town
Communicate Cape Town Engineering
R600 000 - R750 000 Per Year

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Deal of the week!

20% off Afrikaans books, music and DVDs. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Save up to R1000 on Hisense smartphones!

View the large range of Hisense smartphones. Buy today and save up to R1000!

Hot gaming titles – available for pre-order!

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare Day Zero Edition, Far Cry 4, Grand Theft Auto 5 and more. Pre-order now!

Get a free eBook

Buy 3 eBooks and get the cheapest FREE. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Bargain box – 60% off

Reduced prices, very limited stock. While stocks last. Hurry and shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Power and leadership are emphasized today. It is important to strategize and delegate well otherwise you may end up with too much...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.