PARKERSBURG - Following the Boy Scouts of America vote Thursday to allow gay Scouts in the organization, the Allohak Council of BSA, based in Parkersburg, released the following statement.
The press release was sent from the Allohak Council on behalf of Dale Musgrave, Scout executive in Parkersburg, local officials said.
"For 103 years, the Boy Scouts of America, the nation's foremost youth program, has been providing its youth program of character development and values-based leadership training to the youth of our communities.
"The BSA spent most of the first part of this year conducting a thorough review of the BSA's Membership Standards, educating the leaders and parents, and surveying various constituencies. That review confirmed that this issue remains among the most complex and challenging issues facing the BSA and society today.
"There was an outpouring of feedback from the American public; and the same was true from our Scouting families. It reinforces how deeply people care about Scouting and how passionate they are about the organization.
"While perspectives and opinions vary significantly; through the Voice of the Scout survey we understand that parents, adults in the Scouting community, and teens alike tend to agree that youth should not be denied the benefits of Scouting."
The resolution that was adopted Thursday will remove the restriction denying membership to youth on the basis of sexual orientation alone effective Jan. 1, 2014, the press release states. Adult membership requirements, however, remain unchanged.
"America and our communities need Scouting, and our policies must be based on what is in the best interest of our children. We believe good people can disagree on a variety of topics and yet still work together to accomplish great things for youth. Going forward, we will work to stay focused on our mission of instilling in young people the values of the Scout Oath and Law."