The Boy Scouts will soon be adding girls to their ranks.
That’s the announcement posted Wednesday on the national service organization’s website after its board of directors unanimously approved to allow girls to join the Cub Scouts program.
“This decision is true to the BSA’s mission and core values outlined in the Scout Oath and Law,” the organization’s chief scout executive, Michael Surbaugh, said in a statement. “We believe it is critical to evolve how our programs meet the needs of families interested in positive and lifelong experiences for their children. We strive to bring what our organization does best – developing character and leadership for young people – to as many families and youth as possible as we help shape the next generation of leaders.”
Starting next year, girls will also be able to join a scouting program for older girls and be able to earn the organization’s highest rank of Eagle Scout. Existing packs may establish a new pack for girls, create a pack consisting of girl dens and boy dens or remain an all-boy unit.
The move follows “years” of receiving requests from families and girls, the organization with nearly 2.3 million members between the ages of 7 and 21 announced Thursday.