United Way in Illinois Stops Funding Boy Scouts Over Religious Discrimination

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In Genoa, Illinois, the local chapter of the United Way notifies the Boy Scouts that they will cease providing funds because of the group's religious discrimination. The Genoa-Kingston United Way board typically provides $1,250 each year, which isn't much, but if other United Way chapters follow suit the financial impact could become quite large.

The United Way letter states:

"It is the opinion of the board that there is sufficient reason to question the Boy Scout's compliance with the United Way Charter, which prohibits support of agencies that discriminate on the basis of religion."

Dennis Cook, spokesman for the Two Rivers Council in St. Charles, Illinois, insists that the Boy Scouts won't be changing:

"Being a member of the Boy Scouts of America is not a right, it's a privilege. ...

For the last 80 years, our position has included a duty to God."

So the Boy Scouts don't deny that they are engaged in religious discrimination. At the same time, though, they will try to deny that this should result in their being treated any differently.

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