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UPS stops funding Boy Scouts due to group’s anti-gay policies

The UPS Foundation has decided to stop giving charitable grants to the Boy Scouts of America until the group allows gay scouts and scout leaders.

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Two boy scouts carry water containers at the 15th National Scout Jamboree held at Fort A.P. Hill, VA, in 2001. (Alex Wong/AFP/Getty Images)

The UPS Foundation has decided to stop giving charitable grants to the Boy Scouts of America until the group lifts its ban on gays and lesbians joining the organization as scouts and scout leaders, the Associated Press reported.

The UPS Foundation donated $150,000 to the Boy Scouts in 2010, according to the AP.

This past July, following a two-year review of its rules, a Boy Scouts committee chose to continue the group’s policy of excluding gay members, prompting criticism from civil rights groups and some current and former scouts.

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More than 80,000 people signed an online petition asking the UPS Foundation, the Atlanta-based shipping company’s charity, to cut off the Boy Scouts, the AP reported.

The foundation explained its decision to suspend funding on its website, the Dallas Voice reported: “The UPS Foundation seeks to support organizations that are in alignment with our focus areas, guidelines, and non-discrimination policy,” the UPS statement said in part, according to the Dallas Voice. “UPS and The UPS Foundation do not discriminate against any person or organization with regard to categories protected by applicable law, as well as other categories protected by UPS and The UPS Foundation in our own policies.”

Last month, the Boy Scouts’ largest donor, Intel Corp., suspended support for the group because of its anti-gay policies, the Dallas Voice reported.

Groups advocating for making the Boy Scouts more inclusive welcomed the news. “As one of more than 2,000 Eagle Scouts who are part of Scouts for Equality, it pains me to watch the Boy Scouts of America undermine all of the incredible work it has done to build America’s future leaders,” Zach Wahls, founder of advocacy group Scouts for Equality, said today, according to the Dallas Voice. “We join UPS in encouraging the BSA to adopt an inclusive membership policy and look forward to the full restoration of corporate support as soon as this policy is over.”

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/united-states/121112/ups-foundation-stops-funding-boy-scouts-gay-ban