JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. - Local Boy Scout leaders in eastern Tennessee have made a decision concerning the proposed national membership policy change.
The Boy Scouts of America has proposed a new national policy on lifting the ban on gay members. The local Sequoyah Council in Johnson City, Tennessee has decided to vote "no" on the proposal when they have the national meeting in Texas on May 23.
David Page, Scout Executive of the Sequoyah Council, explained the decision to us Tuesday. "Going back to the hundred years of scouting, that's been the traditional values. Our constituents in this part of the country want to maintain our core values and principles when it comes to the Scout Oath and law, and in regards to the scouting membership standards," he said.
Page says if the Executive Committee of the National Boy Scouts votes to go with the new resolution, they will have no choice but to abide.
The Sequoyah Council, based in Johnson City, serves scout troops in northeast Tennessee and southwest Virginia.
Here is the full text of the proposed membership changes:
"The Executive Committee of the National Boy Scouts has proposed a new resolution which reads:
Youth membership in the Boy Scouts of America is open to all youth who meet the specific membership requirements to join the Cub Scout, Boy Scout, Varsity Scout, Sea Scout, and Venturing programs.
Membership in any program of the Boy Scouts of America requires the youth member to (a) subscribe to and abide by the values expressed in the Scout Oath and Scout Law, (b) subscribe to and abide by the precepts of the Declaration of Religious Principle (duty to God), and (c) demonstrate behavior that exemplifies the highest level of good conduct and respect for others and is consistent at all times with the values expressed in the Scout Oath and Scout Law.
No youth may be denied membership in the Boy Scouts of America on the basis of sexual orientation or preference alone."