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Two Deep Leadership

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When did the Boy Scouts begin their "Two Deep Leadership" policy? I think it is a good way to protect both the scout and leader; am just interested in knowing how long its been in place.

 

Thanks!

 

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I can't speak with authority but I believe that it came about in the late 80s'

 

It is a good idea for CYA but creates a whole new set of problems. For example, you live two doors away from a Scout who usually rides to troop meetings with you and your son. One day your son is ill and can't go, so now what to do you do with the other kid? His parents aren't around to take him. Ask someone else to go 15 minutes out of their way to pick him up?

 

Our Venture Patrol had to cancel a great hiking expedition this summer because the second adult had to bail when a major crisis at work happened.

 

How about you're in the bathroom at the troop meeting hall doing what you do in there and a Scout or two come in to take a whiz. "Wait outside guys!" There are ten urinals.

 

 

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And the policy is not negotiable, it is BSA National and can't be ignored or changed. It has consequenses even doing the job the way it is supposed to be done... I was on staff at our council's Webelos Weekend recently and we had to ask several groups of parents and boys to leave the event because they could not meet the rules, and the site being 50 miles from home there was no easy way to call someone else to come take over. Despite our polite explaination and the simple truth that there could be no exceptions, the boys were in tears, the parents angry, and they had to leave, giving up the fee they paid and the opportunity to have a great weekend doing all kinds of fun Scout stuff. Of course they should have known better but that doesn't help either. The problems even get more complicated with Venturing Crews where one trained leader is a woman and the other a man. But of course we must do it right despite all that. If your are going on an outing really far from home, or in the remote backcountry, two leaders is not enough to cover the necessary practical safety contingencies even for a small group of Scouts.

 

You can now do your YPG training online in our council and get the required certificate without waiting for a meeting to be organized to watch the BSA YPG video tape.

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ka6bsa,

 

Could you clarify what you mean by having to ask several groups of parents and boys to leave the event because they could not meet the rules? Two deep does not always mean there must be two adults present. While that it preferable, it can also be met simply by not having a single adult alone with a single child. In other words, as long as there are several boys present you can have one adult alone with them. If you had "parents" and "boys", you had enough people around to cover the YP concerns and not have to send kids away in tears and parents with empty wallets. Keep in mind that Webelos can camp without the pack (as a den) and without a parent present. They can not sleep in another adults tent however. Am I missing something?(This message has been edited by SR540Beaver)

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I missed this thread initially.

 

The answer to the question originally asked is 1988.

 

I'll never forget it. I was a new DE and was going with my boss to my first district committee meeting. The district at the time was old guard, had been without a DE for 8 months -- after the other one quit before he could be fired -- and were a snarly bunch.

 

The BSA had just made two-deep mandatory (it had been suggested for years) and come up with a new application for adults that asked the questions you see now -- with a few changes.

 

I wasn't nervous, though, because my boss who had been a professional for 8 years, was going to be with me and, man, I figured he was invincible.

 

My boss introduced me at the beginning of the meeting, squeezed my forearm, wished me luck and went out the door.

 

Those guys and gals bent, folded, mutilated and stapled me over the new policies. I'm still around, though.

 

Come to think of it, my boss at the time violated Young DE Protection Policies -- he ran when he should have taken the lead ;)

 

Oh well.

 

DS

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SR540Beaver-

"Keep in mind that Webelos can camp without the pack (as a den) and without a parent present."

 

The current G2SS (orange cover) states: A Webelos Scout may participate in overnight den camping when supervised by his parent or guardian. It is essential that each Webelos Scout be under the supervision of an adult.

 

I understand this to mean that a parent must be present.

 

YIS

Scoutdad

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Let me clarify my statement. A guardian can be an adult designated by an absent parent. We've had a number of parentless Webelos go on campouts as long as there was an adult on the trip willing to be responsible for them. The boy can not sleep in the same tent with an adult who is not a parent or "legal" guardian. At least, that is the way it is done in our neck of the woods.

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"Two deep does not always mean there must be two adults present."

 

While that makes sense that's isn't what it says.

 

However, the whole thing makes for goofy situations too many times. The restroom is one, you shouldn't even have two adults in the restroom with Scouts.

 

How about at summer camp, you're taking a kip and wake up to discover that a group of Scouts has returned and you're the only adult present.

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There are two additional restrictions on Webelos "guardians." The guardian may only be responsible for one additional Scout other than his/her son and it may not be one of the Scout leaders. Clearly, the intent is that a den leader can't take 13 Scouts out as a den and claim to be guardian for all of them.

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SR540Beaver

 

"A guardian can be an adult designated by an absent parent."

 

If the adult in question is the "guardian", then why can't he sleep with the boy? Why, because he is not the "legal guardian" that the G2SS refers to. The new G2SS is a change from the past and makes clear, at least to me, that they intend for each Webelos to have one of his significant adults in his life with him on a campout.

 

YIS

Scoutdad

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I agree with the BSA policy on two deep leadership. No adult should ever be alone with a Scout other than there own child during a Scouting event. That being said, there are times the ideal must take a back seet to the practical during some of the "grey arrea" functions.

 

Certainly if one takes it to the the extreme you will get the problems that F.O.G. has mentioned. However there are work arounds for these. As an example, many times there are not two adults present during travel to OA events. The solution is that the travel to the event is not an official BSA activity. The event is, but the travel is not. (This would not work if a unit made it an official trip, or for "contigents" to things like NOAC.) The restroom issue is one that has bothered me a bit. Even here there are grey arreas such as when using non-BSA facilities that only provide showers or restrooms for men and women, no youth/adult divide. Many BSA camps only provide one latreen per campsite and have no means of seperating youth and adult use. It seems that common sense must rule the day in the end. As an example, if your troop is taking a stop at a rest area you cannot close down a restroom to adults while the youth use it, nor can you close it to children while the adults use it. Often units face two deep problems while at summer camp. What if your unit only has one leader staying the entire week while the others rotate during the week? Can you allow a brief gap in two deep while one is leaving, but before the other arrives? Must there be two adults in each camp site or even buildings at all times? Most camps seem to take the line that the adult staff and adults in neighboing sites will cover minor lapses such as these.

 

During summer camp this year my troop had three adults: the SM, the CC, and an ASM (me). Our troop van had some mechanical problems while at camp so it was decided that both the CC and SM needed to take the van into the nearest town with a ford dealership (30 minutes away). The camp director was informed of this, including the make up of the adult leadership, and was OK with it, in fact he was going to town to pick up something so he let them follow him to the ford dealership. Now we didn't follow the letter of the policy. Yet, a Camp Director, Scoutmaster, and Committee Chair all thought it was OK because of the fact that there were plenty of extra adults on camp during that time. So, were they right or wrong about this?

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"As an example, many times there are not two adults present during travel to OA events."

 

You only need one adult in the car but you do need two Scouts unless the one Scout is your son. Of course this creates problems like we had last week, the Scoutmaster and I were leaving and found one Scout sitting in the parking lot. Mom hadn't shown up and a phone call revealed that she was stuck 20 miles away. Should we call the dad and ask him to drive 15 minutes to our meeting place? Neither the SM nor I had our sons there. What to do?

 

We followed the rules and made the kid walk home. ;)

 

 

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Two (adult) deep leadership, while it makes sense for all, only applies to Cub Scouts. For Boy Scouts, the main YP rule is no one on one contact with youth (unless it is your son.)

 

This is easily demonstrated by a typical PLC meeting which includes only one adult (SM) and multiple youth (SPL, ASPL, PLs, Scribe, etc.).

 

For all, in general when someone prefaces a question about "Boy Scouts" I assume they are talking about the Boy Scout program, one of many quality programs that the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) provides. Therefore, I interpret the original question as pertaining to Boy Scouts which does not require two deep leadership.(This message has been edited by acco40)

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"Two (adult) deep leadership, while it makes sense for all, only applies to Cub Scouts. For Boy Scouts, the main YP rule is no one on one contact with youth (unless it is your son.)"

 

Where is that in writing?

 

I'm looking in the G2SS and it says two deep is required for outings but it doesn't give a guideline for meetings.

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Straight from the G2SS:

 Two-deep leadership. Two registered adult leaders or one registered leader and a parent of a participant, one of whom must be 21 years of age or older, are required on all trips and outings. The chartered organization is responsible for ensuring that sufficient leadership is provided for all activities.

 No one-on-one contact. One-on-one contact between adults and youth members is not permitted. In situations that require personal conferences, such as a Scoutmaster's conference, the meeting is to be conducted in view of other adults and youths.

 

Now, I have no source but what I remember from YP training (my memory has been faulty in the past) is that for Cub Scouts, even non-trips and outings require 2 deep leadership. For example, a single den leader at home with his/her den is not permissable. For Boy Scouts, that is not a requirement. Personally, I try to avoid any Scouting situation where I am the only adult present.

 

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