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Uniforms and Meetings.

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Ok I admit I am an Uniform Policeman. I have had a very long conversation over in the groups at MYSCOUTING.ORG, adn I admit the ...You Might Be a Uniform Policeman thread was started by me as a joke towards myself. Part of it is that my troop was a uniformed troop with weekly inspections that counted towards the Patrol of the Year Award. Part of it is that I did work for national supply. part of it is that I want scouts to wear the uniform properly and take pride in it.


Now I admit for certain activities I would have no problem taking someone to the side, in view of others of course, and taking to them privately about why they needed a uniform for an event and why they can't do the event. Biggest ones that come to mind are parades, and the Memorial Day Service project. Maybe a few other special events.


But I will not turn away a scout from a meeting or campout. Nor will I publicly humiliate someone over not having an uniform on. THAT is wrong.


Why am I saying this, b/c of an incident at my son's karate place. One of the other students is having major family issues and has been staying with friends. She's been unable to get things, like her karate uniform. She showed up to practice and the instructor humiliated her publicly and forbid her to practice. And since she was was staying with another student, she had had to stay and do nothing.


I do not want scouting to be like that. And while I am a big proponent of the uniform, it is 1 of 7 methods.

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Eagle92, you raise a good point.


As long as folks (including Uniform Police, or Uniform Guide Gurus or UGGs for short) treat folks with respect, and recognize that uniforming is a method, and not the end goal of the BSA, then things seem to flow correctly.


It's when folks beat others about the head and shoulders with the IG in a humorless, unscoutlike manner, that's when we start to lose focus.


I'm approaching 27 years in the military. One thing I've learned is limitations of any regulation that deals with uniforms. The simpler, the better. But uniform zealots love to address every little nuance and possibility ("No one shall wear shower shoes on the east sidewalk of A Street between the hours of 0800 and 1300, unless they are wearing official PT gear and transiting from their quarters to the shower. On Tuesdays and Thursdays these hours will be restricted from 0900 to 1200 unless utilizing the west sidewalk, in which case...."),which turns a simple publication into a monster and surprise, most folks won't read it. Nor comply with it. Because all it does is satisfy the "itch" of a few uniform gurus. Everyone else has better things to do.


The other thing is the spirit with which the rules are enforced. A condescending, "gotcha" tone turns off most folks. Appealing to ones' sense of unit and personal pride works wonders. Also, quietly approaching someone, as you mentioned, with the viewpoint of helping them rathering that lording over them, is always appreciated.


I'm sorry the girl endured that boorish behavior from the karate guy. Sounds like he forgot who pays his light bill, or feeds his family.

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Well.....I suppose that if the karate instructor was ever approached by a group of thugs in the street while wearing regular clothes, and was attacked, he either has to:


1)Endure a publicly humiliating beating




2) Call a time out, and run how to change, then at which point, her returns to where the thugs are, calls "Game on" then defends himself! :)

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I'm probably not picky enough. Opinions welcome.



I'm Cubmaster in a unit that tends towards the low income.


I cut neckerchiefs out of attractive sheets I get at thrift shops and cut neckerchief slides out of tree limbs with a hole bored through the middle.


The necerkchiefs are ironed, neatly folded and in plastic bags ready to be used. A boy coming to a recruiting meeting gets a neckerchief and is reminded that it's neat and clean and should be kept that way. He picks whichever slide appeals to him.


So he is "in uniform" at the recruiting meeting. He is a Cub Scout for that night whether he joins or not.


Boys and families can decide for themselves whether and when they want to buy more of a uniform. Most do --- but perhaps it will wait to be a Christmas gift or whatever.


Whatever boys wear as a uniform I expect it to be reasonably neat, clean and presentable.


I wear a full uniform myself.


When adults assume a Scout office, they get the same neckerchief and slide, with their Cub Scout helping them put that on rather than the opposite when the boys join.


I don't nitpick adult leaders either, although I like Den Leaders to wear their neckerchief and slide.

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Talk to the Order of the Arrow as they may have some resources for ya. grant you in my neckof the woods the focus is Boy Scout uniforms, but they maybe able to help on the cub scout side. Also talk to the various thrift stores. Our SCOUTREACH guy has the market cornered on "experienced" uniforms in my district. Every single thrift store knows to contact him ASAP if they receive uniform to sell. Also check to see if your council has SCOUTREACH.

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Here's my deliema:


When and when not to wear it.


Okay, Obviously, as a CubMaster, I wear it to all pack meetings. I also wear it to all den nights ( all our dens meet at the CO at the same time)even though I am not actively in front of all the scouts all the time. Might answer a question or two and I greet all the scout when they arrive and see them off after the meetings.


Anytime we have an event, IE: B&G, PWD, Crossover and AOL ceremonies, camps,etc.....


I also wear it to round tables,Pow Wows, and any other distric/ coucil trainings.


But I don't wear it to leadership(only) meetings. Neither do any of the other leaders. I don't make special plans to wear it to the scout shop either.


But the other night, I wore it to my camp promotions training even though it was only thre DE, Boy Scout camp promotions chair and myself. Totally informal,didn't want to wear it, but wore it anyways. Wish I hadn't because the other two didn't.


At our Christmas dinner, I didn't wear it, but really wished I had for the entire duration of the dinner even though none of the other leadership wore theirs. I wanted to be more festive and dressy ( in a casual way) but was miserable about that one thing the whole time.



So what factors do you use to decide wether certain circumstances warrant wearing or not wearing your uniform?

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Here's my list of occasions


Meetings: Den, pack, RT, district, council etc. EXCEPTION: when I would be doing a role in the meeting requiring an outfit, i.e. OA dance exhibition.


Activities: Camping, PWD, cub mobile, rocket derby etc. EXCEPTION: when the uniform would be inappropriate, i.e. swimming party, Summer Olympics, etc, OR I am in costume (Gandalf the White, I mean Merlin the Magician will making an appearance at PWD promoting 2011 CSDC: Knights of the Roundtable)

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So why don't you wear it to leadership meetings?????


It is still a scout function, correct. So the uniform is appropriate and you should encourage your other leaders to wear it as well.


I have done some of my best recruiting in stores and gas stations on my way too and from scout events while in uniform. I have probably have gotten interest from 50 boys and parents, either recruiting or directing them to a closer pack.


I wear mine 5 days a week......

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In my limited experience, I've found any organized gathering of scouts and /or scouters either has an established dress code, or the expected attire is denoted in the announcement for the event.


If the event is a service project or OA work party where we expect to get rather dirty, we are expected to show up in grungeable work clothes.


When in doubt, I wear the full uniform with a scouting t-shirt underneath. If I show up and nobody else is in uniform, class-A shirt comes off and I'm suddenly class-B informal.





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Our leadership meetings are open to anybody who wants to OBSERVE, but 99.99999999999% of the time, only the leaders are there. We aren't trying to impress each other.


To be honest, those particular meets are pretty casual. Wearing a polo shirt might even be considered the same as showing up in a tux.

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I wear my uniform for Den, Pack and Troop Meetings, Roundtable, popcorn kickoff unless a theme is declared and dress specified, B&G, Scout Sunday, etc., etc. I wear it at camp and on our last Troop and Pack campouts wore it all weekend long. Actually felt comfortable to do so.


My wife doesn't understand and wonders why the heck I wear it to Roundtable. I know that I wear it because I want to and usually there are very few that attend who do not wear it. I was also recently appointed as the CSRT Commissioner.


I don't wear it to the Pack Committee meetings since that is just the handful of us who sit around the room to work on Pack stuff. Since Troop Committee meetings occur prior to a Troop Meeting I wear it there.


I enjoy wearing it and think that the newer uniform is actually pretty decent and don't mind wearing it for camping and hiking purposes too.


Merry Christmas!





Scoutmaster Troop 25

former Cubmaster Pack 13 (as of 12/21/10 8^) )

Cub Scout Roundtable Commissioner

Potomac District

Shenandoah Area Council

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@Scoutfish: I am the Cubmaster and when I show up at Committee Meetings, the commitee knows who I am, so I do not wear my uniform. Everything else as you and others stated, I wear the uniform.


For awards and other special Council, District & unit events I put on the Wood Badge Scarf & Slide. I will wear my beads to all events.


When I am holding a Join Night or something that I am in Public, I will wear the Wood Badge Scarf & Slide. It's another talking point to those who do not know. Wood Badgers will always spot the beads.

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I wear my full uniform to every meeting that is related to Scouting. The reason I do is I want to promote the importance of wearing the full uniform to others, especially adults leaders and units that feel its OK to just where the shirt.


The uniform says "We are the Boy Scouts of America" and the proper wearing of the uniform show that one is proud to be apart of the organization and what it stands for.

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Yeah, same thing here: At leaders meetings, it's all the DL's the ACM and committee members. We all know each other. We arew all friends.We all know each other's job and position.


We usually only meet ffoman hour to an hour and a half a month. But we see each other every week during scouting time, and in uniform.


When I have a scheduled meeting with the DE or others at the scout shop/office..I wear my unifrom.

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Yah, interestin' question.


I was tryin' to think up "beavah's rules"... Meaning how I actually decide.


I think it's somethin' like...


1) wear the uniform if it's necessary for the role you're performing (i.e. To identify you to strangers or serving as a color guard or whatnot).


2) wear the uniform when it's a sign of scouting brotherhood and companionship.


3) when in Rome....


4) don't wear the uniform when yeh do it to "make a statement" or when it's otherwise about yourself.


So, for example, I don't wear the uniform to council exec board meetings. There, my role is as a representative of the community, so I wear civilian attire. To wear da uniform would only make me stand out as different from da other members (and when in Rome).


When I visit units, I wear the uniform. If I know the unit well, I try to set my uniform up to match their standard. If they don't do neckers, I won't. If they're shirts-only, maybe I'll go that way in a more mild way. Da purpose is to show brotherhood, not to make myself stand out.


Most adult leader/committee meetings are done in civvies in my experience. It's da rare unit where all of the MCs buy a uniform. So sometimes I'll visit in civvies.


Camping, it just depends, eh? If I'm serving in a role at camp, I'll wear da uniform while I'm serving in that role, unless it would be silly (like at da upcoming Klondike...). Other times, it's all about brotherhood. Yeh can often find me in a unit T-shirt someone has given me ;)



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