Carly Rae Jepsen
Singer Carly Rae Jepsen and the band Train have dropped out of a Boy Scouts of Amertica (BSA) event over the organisation’s anti-gay policies.
The performers announced their withdrawal from the 2013 National Scout Jamboree following a campaign launched by the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) and Eagle Scout Derek Nance.
Jepsen, known for her smash hit, Call Me Maybe, was set to be the headline performer at the event.
On Tuesday, she tweeted: “As an artist who believes in equality for all people, I will not be participating in the Boy Scouts of America Jamboree this summer…”
Train announced their withdrawal last Friday.
“When we booked this show for the Boy Scouts of America we were not aware of any policy barring openly gay people from participating within the organization,” said the group, who are best known for their song Drops of Jupiter.
“Train strongly opposes any kind of policy that questions the equality of any American citizen. We have always seen the BSA as a great and noble organization. We look forward to participating in the Jamboree this summer, as long as they make the right decision before then.”
On Monday, GLAAD and Eagle Scout Will Oliver delivered over 120,000 Change.org petition signatures to National Geographic Channel headquarters, calling on the network to add a disclaimer to its new television series, Are You Tougher than a Boy Scout, denouncing the Boy Scouts’ ban on gay scouts and scout leaders.
“No fair-minded media outlet, corporation or celebrity will want to partner with the BSA as long as the organisation puts discrimination and anti-gay bias before the needs of young people,” said Rich Ferraro, GLAAD’s VP of Communications.
“Carly Rae Jepsen and Train’s decisions not only send the right message to the BSA, but remind LGBT young people that they are supported and accepted.”
The BSA has been under growing pressure to end its decades-long national policy of restricting gays and lesbians from participating in the organisation.
The BSA Board had been set to vote on revising its homophobic policy last month but, to the dismay of LGBT groups, delayed making a decision until its National Annual Meeting in May.