News Column

United Way Lobbied to Pressure Boy Scouts on Gay Stance

April 19, 2013

Lobbying over the proposed end to the Boy Scouts of America ban on gay members includes pressuring the United Way, a report said.

Letters to the United Way from parents supporting an end to the ban argued since the District of Columbia United Way, which has given more than $1 million to the scouts in the past five years, does not discriminate against gay people, neither should the recipients of its funding, The Washington Post reported Friday.

In a meeting with concerned parents, William Hanbury, president of the United Way of the National Capital Area, told parents he has a gay son who left scouting when he was 13, sensing "he wasn't going to be accepted," Hanbury said.

The Boy Scouts of America is expected to reveal its proposal, which will require a vote in May, on whether to change its long-standing ban on gay members.

Nearly half the scout leaders in the Salt Lake City area said they would leave the organization if the ban is lifted, but legislators in California are considering stripping the scouts of their non-profit tax status if the ban is not lifted, the newspaper noted.

Source: Copyright UPI 2013

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