Curran v. Mount Diablo Council of the Boy Scouts of America


Curran v. Mount Diablo Council of the Boy Scouts of America
Curran v. Mount Diablo Council of the Boy Scouts of America
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Supreme Court of California
Decided March 23, 1998
Holding
The Boy Scouts of America are not considered a "business establishment" and do not fall under the provisions of California's Unruh Civil Rights Act. Decision of the Court of Appeal is affirmed.
Court membership
Chief Justice
Ronald M. George
Associate Justices
Stanley Mosk, Joyce L. Kennard, Marvin R. Baxter, Kathryn Werdegar, Ming Chin, Janice Rogers Brown
Case opinions
Majority by: George
Joined by: Kennard, Baxter, Chin
Concurrence by: Mosk
Concurrence by: Kennard
Concurrence by: Werdegar
Concurrence by: Brown
Laws applied
Unruh Civil Rights Act (Cal. Civil Code § 51)

Curran v. Mount Diablo Council of the Boy Scouts of America, 17 Cal.4th 670, 952 P.2d 218, 72 Cal.Rptr.2d 410 (1998), was a landmark case which upheld the right of a private organization in California to not allow new members on the basis of their sexual orientation.[1] Its companion case was Randall v. Orange County Council, 17 Cal.4th 736, 952 P.2d 261, 72 Cal.Rptr.2d 453 (1998).

In 1980, eighteen-year-old Tim Curran, an Eagle Scout, applied to be an assistant Scoutmaster in the Boy Scouts of America. Members of the Boy Scouts of America, however, had recently learned that Curran was gay after reading an Oakland Tribune article on gay youth which featured an interview with Curran. Based on his sexual orientation, the Boy Scouts of America refused to allow Curran to hold a leadership position in their organization.

Curran sued in 1981, alleging that the Boy Scouts of America's membership requirements amounted to unlawful discrimination under California's Unruh Civil Rights Act, which required "Full and equal accommodations, advantages, facilities, privileges or services in all business establishments".

This case was ultimately decided in 1998, when the California Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Boy Scouts of America. The court held that that because the Boy Scouts of America was not considered a “business establishment” under the Unruh Civil Rights Act, it could not be required to change its membership policies so as to include homosexuals.

Psychiatrist and lawyer Richard Green was co-council for Curran.[2]

References

External links


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