Tell the Boy Scouts of America to reconsider their policy of exclusivity against gay youths and leaders
Ohio mom Jennifer Tyrrell was ousted as scout leader of her son's Boy Scouts troop simply because she's gay. Now, Jen is taking a stand and telling the Boy Scouts of America to end its long history of discrimination against LGBT youth and parents.
We join Ohio mom Jennifer Tyrrell in calling on the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) to change a discriminatory policy that prohibits LGBT people from serving as troop den leaders.
Bridgeport, Ohio resident Jennifer Tyrrell was told that she would no longer be able to serve as a den leader of her son’s Cub Scout chapter on Tuesday, April 10, 2012 by the District Councilmember. In response, parents and scouts from the troop have planned a peaceful protest outside of the local BSA chapter on the evening of Tuesday, April 17, 2012 to show support for Tyrrell.
Jennifer, who served as a den leader for more than a year after registering her son for the Boy Scouts, launched the petition below calling on BSA to end its pattern of discrimination against LGBT people.
BSA has a long history of discriminating against both gay youth and LGBT families. Most notably, in 2004 the BSA adopted a new Youth Leadership policy which strips Boy Scout leaders of their positions in the organization and often denies them access to the organization all together. Just last year, the BSA removed an out lesbian from her volunteer post with a local Potomac Falls, VA chapter because of her sexual orientation. None of BSA’s various websites currently contain non-discrimination policies with enumerated protected classes.
"The Boy Scouts of America is one of the last cultural institutions to categorically discriminate against LGBT Americans," said GLAAD President Herndon Graddick. "Sending the message to America’s youth that they or their parents are somehow less than everyone else is dangerous, inaccurate and should be changed immediately."
“Lesbian and gay parents have proven themselves time and time again to be dedicated, caring, and trustworthy Scout leaders and volunteers, as evidenced by Jennifer and many others who have served in welcoming local Scout groups,” said Dana Rudolph, an LGBT advocate and editor of popular gay parenting blog Mombian. “It is shameful that the Boy Scouts have chosen to stigmatize Jennifer's son by not letting his parents participate in the same way as those of his peers.”