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Local Boy Scouts leader excited to accept girls

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NORWALK -

A local Boy Scouts leader says he's excited about the Boy Scouts of America's announcement this week that it would begin accepting girls.

Charles Flowers is the executive director of the Connecticut Yankee Council, which oversees BSA programs in Fairfield and New Haven counties. He says the move will help the Scouts remain relevant and offer opportunities for more families.

"We want to give busier families an opportunity to enjoy the life-changing opportunities of the Boy Scouts of America," he says.

In January, the Boy Scouts also opened membership to transgender boys.

But Mary Barnaby, the chief executive of the local Girl Scouts, says the Girl Scouts offer unique programs tailored to meet the developmental needs of girls, specifically.

"We've had 105 years of building programs with girls," she says. "We know from neuroscience that the brains of girls are different from the brains of boys. And in Girl Scouts, we really do try to give them experiences that will build their confidence."

The Boy Scouts will begin allowing girls to join the Cub Scouts program next fall. Officials say the organization is also developing a path for older girls to become Eagle Scouts in 2019.

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