Boy Scouts of America has made a change and is no longer exclusively for boys and men. Beginning in 2018 girls are now able to join Cub Scout Dens. In 2019, older girls will be able to earn the rank of Eagle Scout.
Girl Scouts of America is suing Boy Scouts of America for their name change. Instead of BSA (Boy Scouts of America) the brand is aiming to change to Scouts BSA to more accurately describe the organization. Specifically, GSUSA (Girl Scouts of the USA) is suing BSA for trademark infringement.
Within the complaint, “Only GSUSA has the right to use the Girl Scouts and Scouts trademarks with leadership development services for girls.” CNN reports.
“Girl Scouts offers the best leadership development experience for girls in the world.” according to the Girl Scouts website, www.girlscouts.org.
The Girl Scouts fear there will be mass confusion for the public. Which option should young girls aim for, Girl Scouts or Boy Scouts?
According to The New York Times article How Different Are Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, there are 3 main differences when comparing Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts: badges, highest achievements, and STEM.
In terms of badges both organizations have very similar badges in a range of fields. The article says, “…the Boy Scouts have some badges that focus on broader themes such as communication, which includes elements of writing, speaking and blogging among others. Alternatively, the Girls Scouts offer specific badges for things like screenwriting and novel writing.”
The highest achievement in Girl Scouts is the Gold Award and the highest award in Boy Scouts is becoming an Eagle Scout.
While The New York Times’ article points out the Boy Scouts launched a STEM program in 2015 the Girl Scouts shouldn’t be perceived as though there isn’t education about STEM for the girls.
“We introduce Girl Scouts of every age to science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) to help them see how they can actually improve the world—whether they’re discovering how a car’s engine runs, learning to manage finances, or caring for animals.” says the Girl Scout website.
Orientation is a growing concern in society and these organizations are no exception.
BSA’s website says, “It is the philosophy of Scouting to welcome all eligible youth, regardless of race, ethnic background, or orientation, who are willing to accept Scouting’s values and meet any other requirements of membership.”
GSUSA is still exclusive to female only; however, on a case-to-case Girl Scouts are for the transgender youth as well.
“Girl Scouts is proud to be the premiere leadership organization for girls in the country. Placement of transgender youth is handled on a case-by-case basis, with the welfare and best interests of the child and the members of the troop/group in question a top priority. That said, if the child is recognized by the family and school/community as a girl and lives culturally as a girl, then Girl Scouts is an organization that can serve her in a setting that is both emotionally and physically safe.” according to the Girl Scouts website.
Boys Scouts/Scouting and Girl Scouts are organizations to benefit the youth and teach them life skills. Both organizations, as of 2018, are now open to girls. The choice of which organization is the best fit still falls on the shoulders of parents and guardians as well as the child themselves.