MADISON (WKOW) – Pro-life groups are pushing for a boycott of Girl Scout cookies this year.
Groups like Pro-Life Wisconsin claim Girl Scouts of the USA is pushing pro-abortion agendas and encouraging girls to look up to what it sees as bad role models.
Pro-Life Wisconsin sent an email to its supporters Monday, asking them to think twice about buying Girl Scout cookies. State Director Peggy Hamill tells 27 News it's time parents consider different youth organizations for their children.
"They have been known to connect girls with resources promoting abortion rights and inappropriate sexual contact," Hamill says. "They get involved in promoting and advocating for women's reproductive rights and we know exactly what that stands for."
Hamill herself says she was in Girl Scouts and was a troop leader for her children but she-- and others-- believe the organization has lost its wholesome reputation. She says the national parent group promotes pro-abortion politicians and connects girls to resources with the wrong message through social media.
The issue has led to an online campaign on a website called cookiecott.com. Advocates online target the national Girl Scouts group, claiming not enough of the money from cookie sales goes to the girls.
Badgerland Council spokesperson Christy Gibbs tells 27 News all the money made from sales stays local. Nearly all boxes cost $3.75. The baker gets $0.99. The girl who sells the cookies gets 12 cents a box, her troop gets 60-70 cents and the difference goes to Badgerland for local programming. That accounts for 75 percent of the annual council budget.
Gibbs challenges what she calls misinformation online.
"We know that the money stays local, we know that our organization takes no position on sensitive issues," Gibbs tells 27 News. "We believe these are issues that are best left under discussion within the family confines. What we're about is providing leadership opportunities and experiences for girls to flourish."
According to the Girl Scouts of the USA website, the parent organization does get a licensing royalty on cookies sold across the country. Hamill says that's a big reason why people should stop buying cookies.
The issue has worried De Forest mother and troop leader Rochell Benish. Her kindergarten girls are getting ready to start selling cookies this weekend. She's concerned the debate will get in the way of their goals.
"My girls are five and six. They have no idea what is going on. For them, this is just a friendship building exercise," Benish tells 27 News. "[Selling] Girl Scout cookies is a huge deal and I just feel like this is kind of putting a damper on the spirit of it and what the girls are looking forward to."
Both sides are encouraging those who want to have a discussion about the issue to take it up with adults, not the children out selling cookies starting Saturday.
27 News reached out to the Girl Scouts of the USA and Planned Parenthood for reaction but neither responded Tuesday.
MADISON (WKOW) -- Pro-Life Wisconsin is among the pro-life groups calling for a so-called "cookiecott" of Girl Scout cookies this year.
Below is a note from the Monday Update on Pro-Life Wisconsin's web site, preceded by the headline, Think Twice Before Buying Girl Scout Cookies:
Around this time of year, little girls come knocking on your door selling Girl Scout cookies. But while these cookies may be delicious, you may want to think twice before supporting the Girl Scouts (Approx. 15% of each box sold goes to the troop. The rest goes to the regional councils, while the national organization receives millions of dollars in licensing fees.).
While some local troops' activities may be wholesome, sadly, Girl Scouts USA promotes radically anti-life women, such as Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger, as role models, regularly partners with pro-abortion groups like Planned Parenthood for "educational" activities, and encourage girls to fight for abortion on demand.
The Girl Scouts of Wisconsin-Badgerland Council, in a report by the State Journal, disputes Pro-Life Wisconsin's breakdown of how money raised through cookie sales is distributed, saying cookie sales money does not leave the troop and regional council.
Jennifer Kliese has more from both groups, and talks to a local Girl Scout troop leader getting ready for this year's cookie sale, tonight in 27 news at 5 and 6.
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