Case Study: United Way and the Boy Scout of America.

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Case Study: United Way and the Boy Scout of America.

The United Way realized that the national Boy Scout of America policy that allowed discrimination against avowed gays goes against its own antidiscrimination policies. However the national UW permits local UW chapters to determine their own antidiscrimination policies. And that is how Larry Norvell (local head of the UW of Columbia) had to face the issue of allocations to the local BSA organization -- Cascade pacific Council of the Boy Scouts of America (CPCBSA). The central dilemma for Norvell is whether or not to address the discriminatory actions of the BSA and CPCBSA organizations and what the impact of this decision will mean to his organization stakeholders (e.g. board members, UWCW personnel) as well to other groups of stakeholders such as the donors, the agency heads (including Larry Otto, executive director of the CPCBSA), and the community people. The concern for stakeholders here is that ultimately the UWCW is around to assist organizations by providing funding to better the community as a whole. 100% of contributions go to agencies, as such the only people who will directly be impacted by a drop in contributions would be the people who need those the most. This is a controversial case and in such cases opinions are always divided. Those siding with the Boy Scouts (and any decision of Larry’s to continue financial support for the local Boy Scout unit) might feel that it would be unethical for the Scouts to abandon their stand against practices which some view as immoral. Even the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the BSA is allowed to continue to determine who could or could not join their organization -- private organization is allowed, under specific and certain criteria, to exclude a person from receiving a membership through their First Amendment right to freedom of association. Opposition to homosexuality is part of the Boy Scout of America’s expressive message and allowing homosexuals to...
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