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Jake327

Unit Commissioner Conflict

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When I got back into Scouting 4 years ago, I asked if our UC could perform our Pack uniform inspection (the Cub Leader book says that is who should do it). I found out we didn't have a UC. When I asked why not, the answer was we didn't have enough volunteers to fill the positions, and we weren't one of the "trouble, or in trouble" units.

ronvo,

Your DE is a paid professional. He has duties assigned for which he is paid. He can't just decide not to show up, as a volunteer can. The DE takes care of a lot of work for units at the council.

The UC is a volunteer who is there to keep an eye on the "health" of his units. If problems arise, he tries to help solve them. A good UC will also share successful ideas he sees at his other units. I guess you could say they are sort of a volunteer consultant.

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After readling this forum and the commissioner publications, I am now wondering what a "unit leader" is?

 

The publications simply say that a commissioner should not be a unit leader. There was an entry in the forum that a unit leader is s Scoutmaster, ASM, Cubmaster, etc. But committee members are not "leaders".

 

But, the new BSA training for "leaders" is Leader Specific training and that includes committee training. So are committee members also "leaders" If that is the case, then can unit committee members be commissioners?

 

So where it comes to commissioner duty, what is a unit leader?

 

Also, I can't find anywhere that a commissioner must have that position as their "primary" paid position. I have heard people say that, but I can't find it written anywhere.

 

Can anyone tell us where to find it written (please not what is thought, or that someone knows, but where to find it in writing), in official BSA documentation, regarding commissioner service, what a unit leader is, and whether a commissioner must be primarily registered as a commissioner?

 

 

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"Also, I can't find anywhere that a commissioner must have that position as their 'primary' paid position. I have heard people say that, but I can't find it written anywhere."

 

A lot of things are said, yet can't be found in any publication. Maybe it is true, buried in some obsure publication. Maybe it was true in the olden days, but no longer. Maybe it is wishful thinking. Maybe it is routine misinformation. If it seems unlikely, just say you want to learn more about that, and to please show you the publication.

 

Once one understands the function of the commissioner service, it becomes clear that a commissioner should not be directly involved in a unit as a registered member of the unit. Commissioners need to be objective, and it is difficult for members of the unit to be objective. Thus comes the rule about a commissioner not being a leader in the units he commissions.

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Yah, Owl... I think yeh have to think about this the way FScouter suggests, eh? Because UC's are supposted to be mentors, mediators, and resources to the unit leaders and committee, it doesn't make sense if they are the leaders that they are supposed to be mentoring or mediatin'.

 

The definition of "unit leader" that I'm aware of comes from the Advancement policies and from the other membership registration R&R documents (so it's scattered about in the more obscure internal books). A unit leader is a Cubmaster, Scoutmaster, Crew/Post Advisor, or Skipper. An assistant unit leader is an ACM, ASM, AA. These are the people, for example, who are not permitted to be part of a BOR.

 

A UC's registration does not have to be primary at the district/council level. For example, a person can have a primary registration as an MC (committee member) or an SA (ASM) in Troop 12 and also serve the district as a UC for Troop 28 and Pack 16. He/she just should not be a UC for Troop 12.

 

IMHO, though, da system works best if the UC's don't hold other jobs in a "home unit". It gives 'em more time to actually mentor and be in touch with their commissioned units. More importantly, it gets 'em away from da notion that every unit should be run the same way their home unit is, which is often a big problem in new commissioners. It also avoids a Commish tryin' to throw his weight around in his home unit, eh?

 

 

 

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This is from the Fieldbook

"Commissioners must not be registered as unit leaders. Although some commissioners may be registered on a unit committee because they have a son in the unit or because of previous personal history in the unit, their principal Scouting obligation must be with commissioner responsibilities.""

 

I believe this is also from the same

"Please don't assign unit commissioners to their own units or chartered organizations. A commissioner needs an objective view as an arm of the district and council. Avoid potential conflicts of interest."

 

 

The way I take it is that a UC may not be registered in a position that has a unit number on the sleeve, other than a MC, period. If a UC is a MC, that unit is not to be one of the units that fall under the UC hat. The UC may not be a UC to a unit that that is chartered to a CO that the UC is affiliated with, such as being a UC to the troop at the UCs church, or to a Crew at the UCs place of employment. Or a former SM may not become a UC for the troop he was the SM.

 

The UCs registration does not need to be the primary paid one, but the UC job does need be the hat on top of all the others, the UC job should come first. I am one of the few lucky UCs, I only wear one hat.

 

The reason that I think it is set up this way is threefold.

 

First, look back at the first post, the problems that Jake327 was having in his pack. A power hungry UC that can't be told to hit the road because is is a MC.( id you have a problem with a UC you do not have to let them in the door, but I would reccomend talking to the ADC or DC before it comes to this.)

Second, you can have a UC that is blind to the problems that the unit is having, because the UC is close to the unit.

Third, wearing too many hat can lead too burnout and poor service as a commissioner because of not enough time for the job.

 

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