Boy Scouts set to lift ban on gay youth members

Though the ban will apparently not be lifted on gay adults

Published April 19, 2013 5:00PM (EDT)

In news that will go largely unnoticed due to the ongoing manhunt for the Boston bombing suspects, a spokesman for the Boy Scouts of America announced that the organization is set to vote in May on lifting a ban on gays in the organization.

Reuters reports:

If the vote is approved, "no youth may be denied membership in the Boy Scouts of America on the basis of sexual orientation or preference alone," Deron Smith, the organization's spokesman, told Reuters.

Smith noted that the decision drew from three months of research, surveys and discussions and was "among the most complex and challenging issues facing the BSA and society today."

As the Washington Post points out, though, the statement stipulates that the organization will continue to ban adults “who are open or avowed homosexuals or who engage in behavior that would become a distraction to the mission of the BSA.”

By Jillian Rayfield

Jillian Rayfield is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on politics. Follow her on Twitter at @jillrayfield or email her at

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Boy Scouts Boy Scouts Of America Gay Pride Gay Rights Lgbt