Merck suspends Boy Scout funding

Posted on 11 Dec 2012 at 10:14am

Merck became the third major company in three months to suspend funding of the Boy Scouts because of its discrimination policies.

The first two companies — UPS and Intel — suspended giving to the Boy Scouts after Scouts for Equality questioned why those companies donated to an organization whose policies are in conflict with nondiscrimination giving guidelines. Merck stopped its donations apparently after an internal “re-evaluation” that was part of a “broader review of funding decisions in 2013.”

“The BSA’s policy of exclusion based on sexual orientation directly conflicts with the Merck Foundation’s giving guidelines,” the giving arm of the drug maker announced on its website.

The foundation re-evaluated funding after the Boy Scouts of America restated its policy to continue excluding based on sexual orientation last summer. That announcement came during the visit to Dallas of Cub Scout mom Jen Tyrrell who had been removed from her position because she is lesbian. During Tyrrell’s visit, the Boy Scouts claimed to have been studying a change to their policy for two years but would not release the study or the names of the 11 people the the group claimed were on the committee that reviewed it.

Tyrrell was in Dallas at the time to deliver a Change.org petition to reinstate her that had gathered 300,000 signatures. The petition is still open for additional signatures.

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