BY William McGuinness
April 07 2010 5:15 PM ET
For organizations not governed by municipal laws that mandate inclusion, however, the funding of Learning for Life programs is a common subject for debate. In 2003 the United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania also pulled its funding from area Learning for Life posts, citing that the program's distinction from the Boy Scouts of America was insufficient. But not all regions have followed.
United Way Worldwide spokeswoman Sally Fabens said that because local
United Way organizations are separately incorporated, no funding
policies are passed to local chapters from United Way Worldwide. While
the United Way of Palm Beach, Fla., cut all funding, the Chicago
United Way organization gave $400,000 to Learning for Life after months of
deliberation in 2001.
Despite these decisions, Learning for Life's national director, John Anthony, told The Advocate in a statement that “Learning for Life programs are not Boy Scout programs, and Boy Scout membership requirements have no relevance to Learning for Life programs.” He also asserted that Learning for Life has always enforced a policy of nondiscrimination.
The SFVBA's diversity committee will decide how substantive the policy is this month. Robert Flagg, SFVBA’s president, said the board will decide if the post will continue in its current incarnation or as an in-house program, similar to one the LAPD has created.