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Female Adult Uniform Issue

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This is my first time to post a question on the forum, although our family has been involved in scouting for about 12 years. I just have an issue that is really bothering me.


Could someone please tell me if they have had to handle a female adult who is improperly wearing the leader uniform, actually in a way that could be viewed by some as disrespectful?


She is not even actually a Scoutmaster or Asst. Scoutmaster, but is the Secretary on the Troop Committee, but she continues to wear her uniform with the buttons open in the front and another olive color shirt underneath. This was even worn in a church on Scout Sunday, and I feel that if I found it not only beyond unnecessary, but also offensive and disrespectful as a wife of a leader, I feel that there were surely members of the congregation who were thinking the same thing.


It's not that she is even attractive, but I know that this not a situation which any of the male leaders might want to deal with directly - for obvious reasons.


I just really feel that it not only an inappropriate display of improper wearing of a uniform in front of the boys, but I also feel it reflects poorly on our troop as well.


One problem is I have been searching the internet for more definitive rules on wearing the uniform, but I can't find anything that specifically says to keep the buttons done, only to keep the collar unbuttoned.


I would appreciate any input or suggestions...Thanks.

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Haha, cool username!


But yeah, like the poster above said, have you SM/ASM give her a sheet that tells the proper way to wear a uniform. I know they exist, we hand them out every year, yet it seems like there are still some people who refuse to wear the uniform correctly

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I am a little unclear on this.


Is this an olive t-shirt, turtleneck, or low cut tank top?


Are all of the buttons on the Scout shirt undone, or just a few?


Are both shirts tucked in or completely untucked?


Is she wearing the proper pants, belt, socks, etc?



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Following up on the questions...honestly, I'm not sure what kind of shirt it is, but it's somewhere between a t-shirt and a tank top. It's not extraordinarily low-cut, but she's um...yeah..anyway. She does wear the scout pants, and she started out with only a few of the buttons undone, but it seemed as if the farther into the service we got, the more buttons had come undone. And mind you -it's not that she can't afford a new shirt if it's too small. Plus even if that were the case, to top it off she's in charge of the uniform swap box, so she could also dig out a bigger size if need be. It just seems she think she's being "fashionable" somehow, but trust me I don't think anyone's impressed, I just don't think anyone wants to tell her.


The thing about the inspection sheet from what I can tell is that it shows the pictures of the women wearing the uniform shirts, but it doesn't seem to specifically say how many buttons to keep buttoned. A lot of our boys wear t-shirts under their class A's because they are more comfortable that way, but they have all the buttons done, so you can't even tell.


I guess I'm just not sure if I should somehow handle this as a woman to keep the men from having to handle it, or if it would be totally out of line.


Thanks for helping out-we have a Court of Honor coming up, and honestly I'm concerned about what some of the parents-especially the newest ones are going to think.

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If I may be so bold, I don't think your problem is trying to come up with evidence that the shirt is to be worn buttoned up. The problem is that no one is comfortable telling the woman this. For evidence, you can use every official picture in any Scouting documentation. The shirts are always buttoned. I wouldn't even get into an argument on this point.


How about this? "Hey, Mary, we're trying to encourage the boys to wear the uniforms properly. Can I ask you to button up your shirt to help set a good example? Thanks."


Oak Tree

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Thanks for responding. I think it's great that all of you take the time to help each other out.


I guess just asking her might work, but I guess the reason I was looking for something specific in writing was to perhaps have a new handout for everyone at one time before the Court of Honor on proper attire and how the uniform is to be worn - and that could include the adults - male and female, as to not have to single her out unless necessary. I suppose I was hoping that maybe regulations could do our talking for us to avoid any possible defensiveness or feeling of confrontation.


As we all know, even with the best of intentions, there are times that people still tend to get their feelings hurt or worse...

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If I may suggest.


If the other Troop leadership adults are concerned about who should discuss the proper uniforming with this Troop Committee member. And also, without pointing her out directly, here is a suggestion.


Baschram645, stated maybe provide her with an adult inspection sheet. An excellent idea!


But if no one wants to be the bad guy, which it already sounds like, why not hold a Troop Uniform Inspection. That is the true purpose for the Inspection sheet. Email the uniforms sheets out to all members. Ask everyone (Youth and Adult) to come dressed appropriately. (This may also correct some of the incorrect patch placements, which some parents quickly sew onto their sons' uniform). Every uniformed person should be present, if committee members don't possess a uniform, a business suit or business dress would suffice.


Personally, it is always a thorn in my side, when the parents of a 16 y/o High School football player Life Scout tries to get "just one more year" out of a khaki uniform they purchase for their first year Webelos with he was a little Cubbie of 9 years old... lol.. But that's a different forum topic string.


Make a big deal out of the inspection night, inviting the Unit Commissioner, District Executive and Chartering Organization.


Maybe an inspection like this would "kill two birds with one stone", allowing the Troop Secretary to come back into proper uniforming, and also confirming the Troop is correctly uniformed as well.


Good Luck!


Scouting Forever and Venture On!

Crew21 Adv


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Many good suggestions have already been given. How do the other adult leaders wear their uniforms? Do they take liberties on how the uniform is to be worn?


If we take liberties in our uniforming, then others will feel free to do the same.


OakTree had the best advice. Just quietly ask her to "button up" the shirt and leave at that.


It may be possible that some leaders may not have said anything to her because they like what they see.





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I am certainly taking all of this into account - but I would like to try to very tactfully give my humble opinion, that although in a sense her shirt may seem a bit small to keep all buttons closed let's say, that it is not exactly a case of liking what one sees when one is faced with the view.


I am not usually this bold, but if we went back to the zipper analogy, let's just say it's a good thing that hers is a really strong one ;-)


On a more serious note - I really do think it's more of a case of not wanting to offend her or hurt her feelings, because she has been helpful to the troop.


As we know, most Scouters try to avoid hurting one another's feelings, and they certainly don't normally take a chance of running off good help if they can avoid it.:-)

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I am kind of a wimp when it comes to things like this, so here's how I would handle this. In a committee meeting, you can make a point that you have noticed that some of the youth have been caught with their shirts untucked. You want to start enforcing a rule of good appearance and that you were going to start really getting onto the Scout when you see them like this. As a good measure, since we are asking our Scouts to stay buttoned up and tucked in, let's all make an effort to do the same and make sure we look sharp.


Hopefully she will get the hint.



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