15:03, January 30 172 0

2017-01-30 15:03:12

 

8-year-old trans boy suing Boy Scouts for kicking him out of troop

Joe Maldonado, 8, of New Jersey is suing the New Jersey Council of the Boy Scouts of America because they told him he can no longer be a scout. Maldonado is transgender.

In December, the former scout told The Record, “It made me mad. I had a sad face, but I wasn’t crying. I’m way more angry than sad. My identity is a boy. If I was them, I would let every person in the world go in. It’s right to do.”

Maldonado’s mother was asked in a phone conversation if she would produce a birth certificate for Joe, after parents of other scouts complained about her son. “Not one of the kids said, ‘You don’t belong here,’” said Kristie Maldonado. An official said her son was kicked out because he did not “meet eligibility requirements”.

“The BSA grants youth membership to Cub Scout to boys in the first through fifth grades, or 7 to 10 years of age,” said Effie Delimarkos, a spokeswoman for Boy Scouts of America, according to PinkNews. “If needed, we defer to the information provided for an individual’s birth certificate and their biological sex.”

She added that scouting “teaches its youth members and adult leaders to be respectful of other people and individual beliefs.”

This may turn out to be a landmark case, according to Justin Wilson, the executive director of Scouts for Equality. That’s the group that pushed the BSA to reverse its bans against gays. He said he’s not heard of any other packs requiring a copy of a birth certificate as as condition of membership, calling the Secaucus decision “a new, unfair arbitrary standard.”

In fact, he said there are at least two transgender Cub Scouts about the same age as Joe, one in a southern state that Wilson did not name and the other in New York.

“It’s pretty clear the Boy Scouts as a national organization have a decision to make,” Wilson told the paper. “Are they going to exclude a transgender boy for the first time or welcome transgender boys?”

“I don’t know, it’s just not fair,” said Joe. “If I was them, I would let every person in the world go in. It’s right to do.”


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