Boy Scouts of America to change name to Scouting America to be more inclusive

For the first time in its 114-year history, Boy Scouts of America is changing its name to be more inclusive.

Here’s what we know.

What did ‘Boy Scouts’ change its name to?

Boy Scouts of America, which has its national headquarters in Irving, Texas, announced Tuesday that it plans to change its name to Scouting America.

In a news release, the scouting organization explained the rebrand reflects the “ongoing commitment to welcome every youth and family in America to experience the benefits of Scouting.”

“In the next 100 years, we want any youth in America to feel very, very welcome to come into our programs,” said Roger Krone, who took over last fall as president and chief executive officer.

The name change will go into effect Feb. 8, 2025, on the organization’s 115th anniversary.

Does Boy Scouts allow girls?

Yes. In recent years, Boy Scouts has welcomed girls as well as LGBTQ+ youth and leaders. LGBTQ+ youth were allowed to join 2013, with a ban on LGBTQ+ leaders ending in 2015. Then in 2017, Boy Scouts announced that girls would be accepted into Cub Scouts the following year and into a separate Scouts division in 2019. In 2021, the first group of nearly 1,000 girls and young women around the country achieved the prestigious rank of Eagle Scout.

The changes didn’t come without pushback, however. In 2018, the Girl Scouts of the United States of America filed a trademark infringement lawsuit. Girl Scouts feared the new language would cause confusion and further marginalize the group.

2018 name change:Girl Scouts sue Boy Scouts over its effort to rebrand itself as ‘the Scouts’

The two organizations reached a settlement agreement after a judge determined no trademark infringement had occurred, stating both were allowed to use language like “scout” and “scouting.”

Boy Scouts face sexual abuse allegations

The name change from Boy Scouts of America to Scouting America comes in the wake of scandals and upheaval in the organization, including lawsuits from former scouts claiming sexual abuse.

Those changes did not stop the financial woes for the organization, however. In 2020, amid declining membership and ongoing child sexual abuse allegations, the organization filed for bankruptcy. Last year, the organization agreed to pay $2.46 billion to settle claims of sexual abuse to former Boy Scouts.

More than 130 million Americans have participated in scouting programs since it was founded in 1910, and more than 2.75 million young adults to date have achieved the rank of Eagle Scout, per the organization.

— USA TODAY reporter Emily DeLetter contributed to this report.

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