After more than 62,000 people signed onto gay Eagle Scout Derek Nance's Change.org petition urging Carly Rae Jepsen to denounce the Boy Scouts of America's national ban on gay Scouts and gay Scout leaders, the singer issued a statement today over Twitter saying that she would not perform, as scheduled, at the Boy Scouts of America's 2013 National Scouting Jamboree because of the Boy Scouts' anti-gay policy.
Jepsen, who along with pop band Train were announced as headliners for the Boy Scouts' 2013 Jamboree, said that all Scouts and Scout leaders should be treated equally regardless of sexual orientation.
"As an artist who believes in equality for all people, I will not be participating in the Boy Scouts of America Jamboree this summer," Jepsen said over Twitter Tuesday morning.
The Boy Scouts of America are slated to vote on a new proposal that would end their national ban on gay Scouts and gay Scout leaders this May.
Nance, who worked as a Boy Scout camp leader for 10 years before coming out as gay, welcomed the news from Jepsen and Train and hoped that the message being sent from both acts was an encouraging push for the Boy Scouts to make the right decision this May, when they plan to vote on their membership policy at a national conference in Dallas.
"I came out as gay because I realized the best way to help end this dangerous policy is to stand up, speak out, and tell the organization I love to do the right thing," said Eagle Scout and former Boy Scout Camp leader Derek Nance, who launched his petition on Change.org . "A Scout is brave, and I'm thrilled that Carly Rae and Train have joined me in standing up for what is right. I hope the Boy Scouts of America also choose to be brave this May."
On Friday, the band Train announced that they would not perform at the 2013 Jamboree if the Boy Scouts of America did not vote accordingly: "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."
So far, more than 1.4 million people have taken action on Change.org demanding an end to the Boy Scouts of America's anti-gay policy. You can view a list of Boy Scouts' petitions here: www.change.org/boyscouts .
Nance also had support from GLAAD, which celebrated the news that Jepsen and Train issued strong statements calling for the inclusion of gay Scouts and Scout leaders. GLAAD has been working on challenging the Boy Scouts' anti-gay policy since helping share the story of Jennifer Tyrrell, a gay mom who was ousted as the leader of her son's Cub Scout pack, in April 2012.
"No fair-minded media outlet, corporation or celebrity will want to partner with the BSA as long as the organization puts discrimination and anti-gay bias before the needs of young people," said Rich Ferraro, GLAAD's Vice President of Communications. "GLAAD will continue to call for partners of the BSA to speak out against the anti-gay ban until the BSA puts Scouting first and adopts a national non-discrimination policy. 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."
Journalists interested in speaking with Nance should use the contact information at the top of the page.
Live signature totals from Derek Nance's Change.org petition:
Carly Rae Jepsen's statement on the Boy Scouts of America:
Train's statement on the Boy Scouts of America: