US: Boy Scouts of America loses Disney funding over exclusion of gay adults

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Despite lifting its ban on gay youth members, the Boy Scouts of America (BSA), may need to rethink its policy on gay adult members and volunteers, as Disney, a large donor, has cut its level of funding because of the ban.

Back in May 2013, the national council of the BSA voted to lift the ban on openly gay youth members, with over 60% of the 1400 strong voting body backing the lifting of the ban.

The lifting of the ban officially took place on 1 January 2014, but a ban on openly gay adult leaders still remains in place.

Now Robert Utsey, president of the Scouts’ Central Florida Council has circulated an email which states that Walt Disney World has cut some of its grants, as it deemed the BSA’s policies to be out of sync with its own.

“The National [BSA] Council has reached out to WDW to try to resolve the situation, however, according to WDW, their views do not currently align with the BSA and they are choosing to discontinue this level of support,” Utsey wrote.

Walt Disney World has not commented, but the Orlando Sentinel reports that a spokesperson pointed to the company’s non-discrimination policy, when asked.

Walt Disney World last month joined other influential businesses in the US state of Florida to throw weight behind a bill to ban anti-LGBT discrimination in the workplace.