Local parents react to BSA's new policy - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Local parents react to BSA's new policy

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SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) -

January first, a new year, and a new policy for the Boy Scouts of America. The organization will be allow openly gay members to join.  Some say it's long overdue.

"Anybody should be allowed in. I think that just makes bigger stance for boy scouts in general," said Jacqueline Valdez. "If kids are allowed to be involved, it's amazing."

Valdez is the den leader for her 6-year-old son, Aiden's Tiger Scout Troop.  She believes sex shouldn't even be discussed in BSA.

"I'm actually pretty surprised that it's become such a big deal," she said. "They're children.  they're teenagers. They want to volunteer. They want to participate in activities; that's amazing. Who cares about their sexual orientation?"

Many do, about 70 percent of BSA's sponsorship comes from churches, and close to half of them have separated themselves from the organization. And thousands of parents have pulled their sons out.

"I respect their beliefs, and their opportunity to choose to do what they want to do as a congregation," said BSA Spokesperson, Tom Cadriff. "I just feel a little disappointed in some cases, because those types of organizations are the organizations that we feel would give all young men an opportunity to learn values,  morals and ethics, and we're losing that more and more each day."

Most major supporters, such as the Mormon church's and Roman Catholics said they will continue to support BSA.

"There should be no way that anyone is discriminated against, for whatever people may find different," said Valdez.

Though gay youth members can join,  BSA is still banning gay adults.

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