Following our cover story last Friday about the Boy Scouts, ousted Cub Scout den leader Jennifer Tyrrell, GLAAD and Change.org have decided it’s time to deliver a petition with 300,000 signatures to Boy Scouts headquarters in Irving.
Tyrrell will be in Irving on Wednesday to deliver the petition asking for her reinstatement. She is expected to be at Boy Scout headquarters at 10 a.m., according to a press release from Change.org.
Tyrrell said that she was encouraged by other parents to become troop leader with “tolerance, acceptance and support.” Only after she became treasurer of the pack and found accounting inconsistencies was she removed because of her sexual orientation. GLAAD spokesman Rich Ferraro said Tyrrell’s story has caught the media’s attention and he called her “America’s favorite mom.”
After the jump, watch video of Tyrrell speaking at the GLAAD Media Awards and read the full text of the Change.org petition containing Tyrrell’s story. Sign the petition by going here.
My name is Jennifer Tyrrell. I am a devoted partner, mother, friend and community leader in Bridgeport, Ohio. I’m also a former Tiger Cub den leader with the Boy Scouts of America (BSA). I was recently removed from this volunteer position, and my membership was revoked after nearly a year of service – just because I happen to be gay.
Shortly after registering my son for Cub Scouts, I was asked to assume the role of den leader and was persuaded by a platform of tolerance, acceptance and support. Throughout the year, my cubs performed volunteer service at a local soup kitchen, collected canned goods for area churches to distribute in food baskets, participated in bell-ringing for the Salvation Army, and, at the time of my removal, were working on a conservation project for a state park. My Tiger Cubs earned multiple Scout badges for service and skills, while learning and exercising the 12 Core Values of Scouting: citizenship, compassion, cooperation, courage, faith, health & fitness, honesty, perseverance, positive attitude, resourcefulness, respect, and responsibility.
The revocation of my membership came shortly after I was elected treasurer of my pack and uncovered some inconsistencies in the pack’s finances. Within a week of reporting these findings to the council, I received notice that my membership had been revoked, based on my sexual orientation, citing that because I’m gay, I did “not meet the high standards of membership that the BSA seeks.”
There was an outcry of support for me by the parents of my Tiger Scouts, many of whom waited for hours to voice their concerns to members of the council and the pack’s charter organization, but were turned away without the opportunity to do so.
It is time for the Boy Scouts of America to reconsider its policy of exclusivity against gay youth and leaders. Please sign this petition to call for an end of discrimination in an organization that is shaping the future.
As more individuals become aware of the discrimination I’ve been dealing with, it is my hope that these incidents will happen less frequently — if at all.
Please join me and take a stand.