Boy Scouts reconsiders homosexual ban

Decision could come down next week

POSTED: 02:09 PM PST Jan 30, 2013    UPDATED: 11:26 AM PST Jan 30, 2013 
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -

The Boy Scouts of America is reconsidering its policy banning gay members.

Six months ago, the Boy Scouts of America reaffirmed its national policy regarding sexual orientation after a two-year evaluation, but it came under heavy criticism. Now the National Executive Board will revisit the ruling.

The BSA's about-face is something Pacific Pride Foundation Executive Director David Selberg would be glad to see.

"Throughout the years, we've had kids come in and their parents come in frustrated with this policy," he said.

Those kids would either not join or become a member and not share their sexual orientation. But that might not be an issue if the Boy Scouts decide to revoke the national ban on gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgendered members and leaders.

The Los Padres Council serves all of Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties. Council leaders are keeping quiet on the possible change and deferred all comment to the national office in Texas.

In a statement, the BSA told NewsChannel 3:

"This would mean there would no longer be any national policy regarding sexual orientation, but that the chartered organizations that oversee and deliver Scouting would accept membership and select leaders consistent with their organization's mission, principles or religious beliefs."

That means it would be up to the individual troops to decide.

"You know, this is really heartening. I was a Cub Scout and a Boy Scout many years ago right here in Santa Barbara so to think about being able to be out and gay or lesbian, bisexual, to be out and gay and be a Boy Scout is really an important thing. It's about fairness, it's about equality, it's about dignity. And this policy will affect thousands of families throughout the nation," said Selberg.

The Boy Scouts of America could announce its decision as early as next week.