Published: Fri, October 13, 2017
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

Reactions mixed on decision to include girls in Boy Scouts

Reactions mixed on decision to include girls in Boy Scouts

Since I severed my ties with the Scouts, the organization has come around to public sentiment regarding gay and transgender kids and adults, and on Wednesday announced another step forward: Girls will be allowed to join.

Gulfport resident Samar Fairley said, "You might want to learn how a boy learns it cause what if they learn it differently or learn more skills than you do because, a lot of people think that boys are smarter or more tough than girls and you get to prove them that boys and girls are equal".

Boy Scouts of America will now allow girls to be a part of its program. Since there are so many more badges for Girl Scouts than Boy Scouts, the Girl Scout badges include a more diverse group of activties.

"[Families wanted something] at the same time, at the same place and not have to go to two different locations or go on two different nights of the week", he said. In response to the news on Wednesday, the Girl Scouts wrote a blog posted titled "Girl Scouts Are the Girl Leadership Experts".

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"I welcome [the Boy Scouts'] decision to integrate girls in their programs", tweeted Ahmad Alhendawi, the Secretary-General and CEO of World Scouting, "On #DayOfTheGirl, we affirm #Scouting commitment to girls empowerment".

The Boy Scouts of America made headlines today after announcing their decision to permit girls to join their program, as reported by CNN. The Gold Award is the Girl Scouts' highest distinction and is on par with the Eagle Scout award, but not as recognized.

"Girl Scouts is, and will remain, the scouting program that truly benefits USA girls by providing a safe space for them to learn and lead", a Girl Scouts spokesperson says, adding, "Only Girl Scouts has more than 100 years of experience helping girls tap into their leadership potential by reinforcing and extending the skills they learn in school in a supportive, encouraging environment in which they feel safe to just be themselves". Christy Gustin is the Director of Regional Services for The Girl Scouts, "We're going to continue to do what we do to help girls grow in their leadership and to do positive things for their communities". At its peak in the 1970s, the BSA had about 5 million Scouts.

Traditionally, the Boy Scouts have lagged behind Girl Scouts in including LGBT Scouts and leaders.

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If she had been born a few decades later, Parker wouldn't have had to seek out a sub-program of the Boy Scouts for her adventures.

Girls will be able to enter the Cub Scouts beginning next fall, and Cub Scout dens will still be single gender.

"No. Absolutely not. Girl Scouts is a girl organization", she said.

Some say this decline is what sparked the change to the hundred year old tradition.

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"I know my girls would much rather go hiking or do outdoors stuff". What we do for girls has data and research behind it. Any girl who states, "I am a "Boy" Scout," will be unwittingly stating that she is a boy, even if she is a genuine scout, the type of girl who likes the scouting activities that the Boy Scouts provide and are involved in.

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