America’s top men’s professional soccer league has ended its short-lived partnership with the Boy Scouts of America. Major League Soccer did not provide a specific reason for ending its partnership with the organization, but its official announcement that it would not renew the deal after it expired later this year came just two days after the Boy Scouts’ “secret committee” completed a two-year review of its policy that excludes “open or avowed homosexuals” from membership.
The partnership began in January and was meant to “provide opportunities for Scouts to interact with MLS stars, attend games on reduced-price tickets and be recognized during games for notable achievements such as earning the Eagle Scout designation,” the Dallas Morning News reported Friday.
As OutSports noted, the Boy Scouts’ anti-gay policy was in effect when MLS first struck the deal with the organization, but since the beginning of the season, multiple teams have held “equality nights” or formed partnerships with LGBT advocacy groups. And though the MLS agreement will soon come to an end, partnerships with the Boy Scouts are still common in America’s professional sports. The National Hockey League, whose players have appeared in anti-discrimination public service campaigns, has a partnership with the organization, and Major League Baseball teams often hold “Scouts Nights” that offer discount tickets and other promotions to members of BSA.