Girl Scouts are in a “highly damaging” recruiting war with Boy Scouts after the latter opened their basic services to girls, causing market confusion and some girls unknowingly joined the Boy Scouts, they claim. attorneys for the centennial Girl Scouts organization in court papers.
The competition, more guesswork than reality two years ago, has intensified as the Boy Scouts of America organization, which insists that recruits commit to being “trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous and kind,” has recruited unfairly to girls lately, he claims. in legal briefs filed on behalf of the Girl Scouts of the United States of America.
Attorneys filed documents in federal court in Manhattan Thursday to repel an effort by the Boy Scouts to dismiss before trial a trademark infringement lawsuit that the Girl Scouts filed in 2018.
Last month, lawyers for the Boy Scouts asked a judge to reject claims that Boy Scouts cannot use “scouts” and “scouting” in their recruitment of girls without infringing on trademarks. They called the lawsuit “absolutely without merit.”
The Boy Scouts on Saturday raised legal grounds in which they blamed the Girl Scouts for reacting to their expansion plans with “anger and alarm” and said the Girl Scouts launched a “land war” to spoil the Boy Scouts’ plans for include more girls. .
In a statement, the Boy Scouts said they expanded the offering of programs for girls “after years of solicitation from families” who wanted their boys and girls to participate in their character and leadership programs or for other reasons, including a desire to become in Eagle Scout.
“We applaud all organizations that develop character and leadership in children, including the Girl Scouts of the USA, and we believe that all families and communities benefit from the opportunity to select programs that are best suited to their needs. their needs, ”the statement said.
In their presentation, the Girl Scouts said that the Boy Scouts’ marketing of expanded services to girls was “extraordinary and highly damaging to Girl Scouts” and had caused an “explosion of confusion.”
“As a result of the Boy Scouts violation, parents mistakenly enrolled their daughters in Boy Scouts thinking they were Girl Scouts,” the attorneys said, adding that this never happened before 2018.
The Girls Scouts said they can prove that there are “rampant instances of confusion and erroneous instances of association between Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts” after the Boy Scouts targeted girls and their parents with marketing and recruiting communications like never before. they had done.
However, in their statement, the Boy Scouts said: “To imply that confusion is a predominant reason for their choice is not only inaccurate – with no legally admissible instance of this offered to date in the case – but also dismisses the decisions of more than 120,000 girls and young women who have joined Cub Scouts or Scouts BSA since the programs became available to them. ”
The organization cited evidence from a small subset of documents provided by 19 of the 250 local Boy Scout councils, including evidence that registration fees were sometimes returned to parents who mistakenly thought they were registering girls for Girl Scouts. .
He said the repeated instances of local confusion and interference by the Boy Scouts were a small fraction of what was happening across the country. Both Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts, as well as other major youth organizations, have seen membership declines in recent years as competition grew pre-pandemic due to sports leagues and busy family schedules.
In the spring of 2018, the Boy Scouts program for youth ages 11 to 17 announced that it would be changing its name to Scouts BSA in early 2019. The parent organization, Boy Scouts of America and Cub Scouts, a program that serves kindergarteners through fifth grade, they kept their names.
The organization began admitting girls to Cub Scouts in August 2018, and Scouts BSA began accepting girls in February 2019, the attorneys said.
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