Pride Center of Vermont (formerly RU12? Community Center) Speaks Out on BSA and the Montpelier Independence Day Celebration
Pride Center of Vermont (formerly RU12? Community Center) commends Montpelier Mayor John Hollar, along with City Councilors Thierry Guerlain, Dona Bate, and Jessica Edgerly Walsh on their principled decision to withhold city approval of a vendor license for the July 3rd Independence Day Celebration to the Boy Scouts, based on the Boy Scouts of America’s policy of open discrimination based on sexual orientation.
“Pride Center of Vermont strongly supports many of the values taught by the Boy Scouts of America and their local troupes. It is for this very reason, however, that we cannot abide by the Boy Scouts of America’s message to our young people that there is a reason to discriminate against members of our community,” Executive Director Kim Fountain noted. “We applaud those city leaders who were brave enough to step forward and refuse to put the Montpelier community’s seal of approval on discrimination.”
Ms. Fountain noted that Pride Center of Vermont planned to alert its membership over the weekend that help is needed for July 3rd cleanup volunteers in Montpelier, in light of the Scouts’ decision to not help with the process. “Supporting Montpelier in the cleanup is a great way to demonstrate that the community has their back on this principled decision.”
“There is a bit of talk that it is the boys who are being hurt by this decision because they are caught in the middle of what is being described as a political issue,” said Ms. Fountain. “What is missing is the fact that LGBTQ youth and adults have been harmfully affected by this policy for years. Even with the recent decision by BSA to allow gay youth to be scouts, they are sending the message that these boys should not aspire to leadership positions because they have been deemed unworthy of such an honor. How is that not hurtful and why are our gay youth less worthy of concern?”
Ms. Fountain hopes that a sincere and productive dialogue on this issue can take place and that local troupes will stand proudly with the LGBTQ community in asking the Boy Scouts of America to end its discriminatory practices.
For information on how you can support the LGBTQ community and local Boy Scout troupes that stand for justice for our community by helping to clean up after the July 3rd parade, please contact either Kim Fountain at email@example.com or use the volunteer link for the celebration at http://www.montpelieralive.org/.