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  • Youth-Adult Grey Area

    So I'm going to NOAC this summer and will be 19 during the event. I am NOT registered with a boyscout unit but I am in a venture crew where I am still considered a youth. So I'm a youth in the OA, in the Venture Crew, and I am not associated with a troop.

    Few questions:
    1. Why am I being told I have to take youth protection training then?
    2. Does two-deep leadership still apply when on OA or Venture Crew activities? That seems like it wouldn't really work.
    3. No one on one contact, does this also apply? What about my friend in the OA with me who is only a yearish younger. The OA says we are both youth would I get in trouble if I had contact?

    Thanks for your help,

  • #2
    When you're a youth, it's called the buddy system. When you get older, it's called 2-deep leadership. Remember safety for everyone first.

    Take the "youth protection training" as this is part of getting older - share our joy

    Welcome to our side, you'll need a coffee mug.

    My $0.02


    • #3
      Yah, don't try to make sense of it, lad, there's no sense to be made.

      You're legally an adult, so my advice is just act like you're an adult. Take youth protection training, and be mindful that when working with or playing with minors yeh should not be one-on-one with 'em for the most part in a scouting environment. A true 17-year-old peer and friend is OK, but beyond that yeh have to be both wise and cautious. Nuthin' will make your life more miserable than someone's parent misconstruing a roughhousing match as a form of molestation, or seein' yeh walk off with a boy and assume the wrong thing. The no one-on-one rule is meant to protect you as an adult more than it is meant to protect the youth.

      Two deep is meant for the leaders who are responsible for youth when on outings with kids. That's just good outdoors practice, eh? Yeh want a second leader around in case the first becomes ill, gets hurt, etc. It doesn't apply to meetings or walkin' around a conclave.

      So put on your adult hat, pick up your coffee mug from RememberSchiff, and settle into the adult world. Consider it a bonus that for a few program activities yeh can still participate as an "old youth" in the BSA, but beyond that ignore the "youth member at 19" nonsense.

      (This message has been edited by Beavah)


      • #4
        There was this judge in SW PA in the 19th century who asked to be buried on the WV border. That way, if the devil came for him from East or west, he could hop the state line and Old Slewfoot would have to get a warrant from the other jurisdiction.

        You're on the state line. Use it to your advantage.

        If you were asking to bunk with a 14 year old, we might have issues.

        As I explain to adults who make a fuss about YPT, the more leaders who understand how we operate and why, the easier it is to make good decisions.

        Welcome to the dark side. We have cookies!


        • #5
          Welcome to GASerhood (Gray Area Scouter). uit don't make since, but use it to your advantage, i.e trading patchesa

          More later.


          • #6
            Yes it does not make sense. I don't udnerstand why you have to go through YPT since you are still a "youth" in both the OA and Venturing. But if it's a requirement for you to go to NOAC, then it's wortht the 20-30 minutes of your time to do it online.

            As I said, use it to your advantage. I remember going to a conclave as a GASer, and I had both my troop's uniform (adult) and ship's uniform (youth) with me. I went patch trading one nite at a conclave and had the "patch police" coming after me, being rather rude,a nd saying I'm not allowed to trade with" youth, despite being one myself according to the OA.

            SSSSOOOOO I went upstairs, put on my Sea Scout uniform, and went back down to finish trading.


            • #7

              As far as the BSA is concerned for the items you listed, you are a youth since you are not registered in a troop. Then you would be an adult. Even though you are considered a youth in Venturing and OA, you are legally an adult. The smart thing is to take YPT simply because it is a good thing to do. It can be done online and takes very little time. In fact, if I were you, I'd take both the Scouting YPT and the Venturing version. Have a blast at NOAC!


              • #8
                I think part of the general problem around the 18-21 year range in the Venturing program could be solved by just switching terminology around.

                You're a legal adult when you turn 18. The BSA has no say in that. You're not "a youth in the BSA's eyes," - you're a legal adult. Period.

                In the Venturing program, you can have member status (not "youth" status) until age 21. Members in the program are eligible for the various awards, leadership positions, etc, which are currently available to "youth." After age 21, you're no longer eligible to be a member, and instead must register as an adviser if you wish to remain active in the unit.

                Base all the YP rules (one-on-one contact, tenting/sleeping arrangements, etc) on legal adult status - not on program, registered position, etc. If you're over 18, then you're an adult, regardless of whether or not you're a Venturer. Base all program-specific rules (advancement, eligibility for awards or leadership positions) on whatever criteria you want, age being one of them.

                Just an idea....


                • #9
                  Sadly you are now in that range of just 18+ the most persecuted age group by national BSA. You can essentially forget about any friendships you have built up over the years with those who might be just a few years younger than you. It doesnt really matter if they have been your best friend or neighbor for years. Now that you happen to be a legal adult just about any normal thing you might do with them like say talking, hanging out with, camping, traveling etc can now get you in serious trouble with the BSA who doesnt really care its age discrimination. So now that you really cant spend time with those any younger that yourself youre left with only those 18+. Since in most troops but not necessarily crews its either eagle then out or the rapidly decreasing membership as you get closer to that mark there likely arent many around in our age ranges. That leaves you with those old guys (advisors, and other troop and crew leaders) most of whom in my experience are at least 30 years older than you and likely have little to nothing in common with outside scouting. And since they are the ones constantly harassing you that you arent able to really spend time with the people you are actually close to its mostly hatred towards the old guys.


                  • #10
                    It's very simple: You are now legally an adult no matter how fun and scoutish you are.

                    I wouldn't hold it against BSA either. It's not like they can push the legal age aside or forward or back just because you are in a program they run.

                    What it comes down to is this:

                    Society has become too "I'm gonna sue you! " happy!

                    Doesn't matter what BSA thinks, you think, the scouts in your unit or even what all the other older leaders thing.,

                    Get one jerk of a parent with a hair up their butt and they will cause problems. It happens all te time. Remember, we are a society where convicted female sexual predator/murderers will sue for their constitutional right to watch porn while in prison. And lwayers with dollar signs instead of real pupils will line up to take those cases too.

                    Pain in the butt? ( No pun insinuated) yeah, sure is. But that's the world we live in today!

                    20 minutes of a dull video with music worse than those high school science films used to have...and you are all set.

                    Matter of fact, order a delivery pizza and you can kill the time that you are waiting by taking YPT.


                    • #11
                      Yah, Kristian, welcome to da forums and thanks for sharin' your perspective.

                      You're right of course. The notion that an 18 year old high schooler should hang around and tent with a 49 year old fellow, particularly a 49-year-old BSA-rulesmonger is silly. And a bit creepy. Especially when odds are that not only are yeh friends with 15-17 year olds, but yeh shower with 'em after sports practice at school every day. Sixteen and 17 year olds go for college visits and stay in the rooms of 19-20 year olds all the time.

                      This is where yeh hope folks have a bit of common sense. My frequent complaint about how the BSA guidelines are presented and interpreted is that they're presented a bit too much like "laws", and inexperienced adults tend to shut off their brains and treat 'em like Gospel, in ways that they wouldn't treat many real laws.

                      The fellows sittin' in an office in Irving are doin' their best within the constraints of the approach they've chosen, but it's just too hard to write "rules-like guidelines" for this case, especially when they start from a position of legal risk management lookin' at da crazy quilt of statute and case law across 50 states. The real guideline should be "use your brain."



                      • #12
                        I've been in that position in Sea Scouts for about a year now, and it is definitely weird. It is especially odd and annoying, here in the Bay Area because of what we call the JO program. Area 3 in the Western region basically decided to treat the 18-21 range as neither crew, nor officer. In this area once you turn 18 and graduate high school you become a JO. You can no longer compete at the regattas, and you wear the adult uniform. When a ship cruises a JO doesn't really stand a watch. They are usually set as OOD in training, or they are assigned to teach a new person something.

                        It is weird when you put on the khaki shirt because the people who were just your crew mates are not anymore. While you can hang out with them, it just isn't the same. Then when you go hang out with the officers, that is just weird too. The youngest officer on my ship is 29. The rest are in their mid 40s or late 50s.

                        There are only about 10 people in this age range in this area right now, so at regattas and such we usually hang out together. We even team up every year and go compete at regattas in other areas that allow us to compete. While we have fun and all, it is always a little awkward. That is one reason why there are so few of us. The few that don't go to college or just drift away from the crew naturally tend not to stick around after they see what being a JO is actually like.