London: The Girl Guides in Britain are considering dropping any mention of God or the Queen from its oath, in one of the biggest shake-ups in their 102-year history.
Girlguiding UK, the parent organization which encompasses the Guides, Brownies and Rainbows, launched a consultation that could see significant changes to the pledge girls take on joining.
The organization’s new chief executive, Julie Bentley, said that the promise has been part of the Girl Guides since its beginning, it is crucial and unique, the Daily Mail reports.
She said that some members of its organization find some parts of the oath challenging, and when members do make that oath they want them to mean it and believe it.
According to the report, she told the Guardian that this was ‘in no way a watering down of the organization’s values or moral compass’.
The move follows a similar consultation by the Scout Association, which is also considering providing an alternative promise to welcome atheists as full members after complaints from parents and campaigners, the report said.
The consultation, which will close on March 3, is open both to members of the organisation and those outside it.
Guides currently promise to do their best, love ‘my God’, serve ‘the Queen and country’ and keep the Guides’ law, the report said.
Girlguiding UK has 538,247 members, including 63,000 trained volunteers, but last year more than 50,000 girls were on waiting lists to join because of a lack of leaders, it added.