US Boy Scouts finally allow transgender boys

boy scouts of america (Reuters)
It's another step forward for the organisation (Reuters / file)

After more than 100 years, the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) organisation is opening its doors to transgender youth.

On Monday (local time), the BSA issued a statement saying its current method of judging gender based on what's on a child's birth certification is "no longer sufficient".

"Starting today, we will accept registration in our scouting programmes based on the gender identity provided on an individual's application," Chief Scouting Executive Michael Surbaugh says.

"We will also continue to work with families to find scouting units that are the best fit for their children."

It's another step forward for the organisation, which says its goal is to prepare young people for life.

In 2013, it ended a ban on gay scouts and in 2015, it also allowed gay scout leaders.

The New Zealand branch, Scouts New Zealand, has been co-ed since 1976 and welcomes transgender children.

"The gender with which someone identifies is personal to them and we embrace that. We don't need to see a birth certificate," says Shaun Greaves, Scouts NZ's acting chief executive.

"Scouts New Zealand are pleased to hear this news, and welcome any call that embraces diversity in our movement."