UPS ends grants to Boy Scouts over discrimination

Associated Press Modified: November 12, 2012 at 6:16 pm •  Published: November 12, 2012

ATLANTA (AP) — The philanthropic arm of shipping giant UPS said it will no longer give money to the Boy Scouts of America as long as the group discriminates against gays, the second major corporation to recently strip funding from the scouts.

The UPS Foundation made the change Thursday after an online petition protesting its annual grants to the Boy Scouts attracted more than 80,000 signatures. UPS, based in Atlanta, follows computer chip maker Intel in withdrawing corporate support for the Boy Scouts.

The UPS Foundation gave more than $85,000 to the Boy Scouts in 2011, according to its federal tax return.

Federal tax returns for 2011 for Intel, the world's largest chip maker, were not immediately available. Some media reported the Santa Clara, Calif.-based company as giving hundreds of thousands of dollars over the years.

UPS spokeswoman Kristen Petrella said groups applying for the foundation grants will have to adhere to the same standards UPS does by not discriminating against anyone based on race, religion, disability or sexual orientation.

"We promote an environment of diversity and inclusion," Petrella said Monday. "UPS is a company that does the right things for the right reasons."

The UPS Foundation distributed $45.3 million in grants last year. Petrella said she was not aware of any other current grant recipients who would be affected by the new policy.

Petrella said the company had been concerned about discrimination by the Boy Scouts before the petition drive.

The Boy Scouts said this summer it was sticking with the divisive, long-standing policy of excluding openly gay youth and adults as members and leaders.

Deron Smith, the director of public relations for the Irving, Texas-based Boy Scouts of America, said the group was disappointed about the decision from UPS.