Jump to content
Keithami

Looking for some insight

Recommended Posts

15 hours ago, Keithami said:

So again camp Norse and all the counselor went against my requests.  

Our policy is to direct all such requests to the administrator. A camp counselor is not is not supposed to agree, disagree, or even discuss a request like this. 

  • Upvote 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
38 minutes ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

Sometimes there are situations where a specified parent's time is SUPERVISED (emphasis) and they are not to be alone with the child. Judge was shocked when I as a teenager requested supervised visitation for my father. To all outside appearances, he was a nice normal person and not the physically and mentally abusive individual my siblings and I knew. My request was granted, and thankfully he never tried to force me to visit.

We have one Scout whose mom can only have him in a supervised situation. Not going into details, but it was over 10 years before she was finally able to see him, and it was at the grandparents house.

I’m so sorry you went through that, and I’m glad your father didn’t try to force visits on you.

Absolutely, there are times when supervised visitation is warranted.  But nothing in the OP indicates that- it sounds like the Mom gets visitation without supervision starting Friday.  The whole situation described sounds off— she was watching a movie with the counselors??— but if it is just the request of one parent that the other parent not be allowed, well, that’s not feasible.  I agree that counselors aren’t the ones he should be talking to, and they should know to direct him to a higher up.  At the same time, as an adult, the counselors all look about seventeen to me!  It’s hard for me to imagine why you would only talk to a kid (counselor) about what is clearly a sensitive topic requiring some discretion.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just to be clear.  I spoke to a woman, she was at least 40 years old, she told me she was in charge and that her son was the camp health officer, he was at least 20 years old an adult non the less, if I was dealing with teenagers I would not have expected them to handle a request of this magnitude. Also, they could have said no and I would have understood, at that point I could have made a choice.  There is so much more to this, I am not here to air my issues, just wanted to get an opinion, and I did.  I thank all of you for your input, good and bad.  Have a great summer!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, scoutldr said:

I will be blunt...I don't think this is the Camp staff's problem.  As volunteers, we are not privy to custodial orders, nor are we in a position to enforce them.  This is something you need to work out with the boy's mother and the Court.  Perhaps a restraining order is called for.

I think this is the right approach. Keithami,  I think your next step should be to contact your attorney - not about what the camp did, but what your ex did, and may try to do in the future.  In the interest of full disclosure, I should mention that I am an attorney.  But I think it’s good advice anyway, despite my possible predisposition to suggest a legal approach.

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, Keithami said:

Just to be clear.  I spoke to a woman, she was at least 40 years old, she told me she was in charge and that her son was the camp health officer, he was at least 20 years old an adult non the less, if I was dealing with teenagers I would not have expected them to handle a request of this magnitude. Also, they could have said no and I would have understood, at that point I could have made a choice.  There is so much more to this, I am not here to air my issues, just wanted to get an opinion, and I did.  I thank all of you for your input, good and bad.  Have a great summer!

Thanks for the specification. It sounds like the woman in charge was the Camp Director.  It also sounds like she interpreted the court order in a way that allowed your ex to be present at camp. It's not clear how much contact with your son she allowed.

In general, BSA camp directors answer (directly or indirectly) to council scout executives. That's why you or your lawyer contacting him/her to file a complaint would be the next step. The goal should be to clearly understand the BSA policy and determine what, specifically, the court order restricts/allows. This has implications for how the camp is conducted, but also might give insight on what rights you may have when your ex is in custody.

On a personal level, I have found that if there's any possibility for each bio-parent to spend their custodial week (or weekends) with their son/daughter at camp, it goes well for the family. In addition to the child getting some quality time with each parent, parents get to know other adults quite well, and there's a lot of advice out there from the school of hard knocks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/15/2018 at 7:27 AM, shortridge said:

Welcome to the forums!

You need to call, not email, the person on this list (http://www.narragansettbsa.org/about-us/contact-us/staff/66599) identified as the director of camping, and explain the situation, asking what policies are in place for such circumstances. Email him a copy of the court order. Explain calmly that you are upset because of the two conversations you had with the camp’s staff that were not followed up on, and ask what procedures will be put in place for the future. It is your son’s mother’s responsibility to abide by the court order, but it is also the camp’s responsibility to keep your son safe. If that does not work, escalate to the Scout Executive.

With respect, @ItsBrian, this is an issue that the camp director should be fully equipped to handle and deal with. It would not have impacted anyone else’s program experience in the least. Many parents aren’t able to take a week off work and stay with their kids at camp, and to suggest that the father is to blame in this instance is simply wrong. It is not a family’s “personal problem,” not a parent’s “request,” but a court-governed custody matter.

Edited to add: Under the national BSA camp standards, camps are required to have written procedures on “Release of campers who are minors to a parent or guardian or to a person other than the legal parent or guardian,” “Methods for discouraging and/or distinguishing possible unauthorized persons,” and “Steps to be taken in the event of a possible intruder; unauthorized person seeking release of a minor; or other circumstance as identified by the camp.”  A parent who only has visitation authorized by the courts during certain time periods certainly seems to me to be an “unauthorized person” during other periods, regardless of whether they are seeking to remove a camper from the camp. See 804 at https://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/outdoor program/pdf/430-056.pdf.

I was not saying the Camp director should not handle it, but I’m saying expecting a young counselor to know what to do and handle it themselves.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/15/2018 at 7:08 AM, ItsBrian said:

I had followed every detailed request a scoutmaster or parent asked me, I would be ruining the program for others. If the counselor did handle the situation, the other kids would have had a poor program experience since the counselor would be dealing with a families personal problem.

If OP had spoken with a counselor - and it seems he did not - the counselor should have known to immediately buck it up to the next level. That’s all a counselor would have to do to “handle” this situation or anything similar. Really simple.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/14/2018 at 9:55 PM, Keithami said:

I took my son to camp Norse July 2nd of this year, I signed him up for the week.  I informed the camp counselor that I am the custodial parent of my son and that his mother may show up and want to hang around, I informed the camp counselor that I do not want her at the camp. I was assured by the camp counselor that she would inform all the other counselors of my request and that my sons mother would not be aloud to stay while my son was at camp.  I arrived Friday July 6th to find my sons mother watching a movie with all the counselors, when I spoke to the counselor in charge she stated she was not aware of my sons mother being there, she assured me that would never happen again.  I brought my son to camp Norse on the following Monday, I gave a copy of the court order that stated my sons mother visitation was not to start until 6PM  on Friday, again I was assured that my sons mother would not be allowed to be at camp.  I showed up Friday July  13th to pick up my son, I was early so they had to have someone escort my son from the pool area, when they arrived my sons mother was with him and had been there all day.  The counselor did not apologize, nor did she ask what she was doing there.  So again camp Norse and all the counselor went against my requests. Where is the honor in this?  

As one who has worked camps and currently working with a large troop, your expectations to involve the staff in the visitation issues may be a challenge.  If there is a court ordered restraining order, then entirely different set of circumstances.  I have had families with those, it was not pretty.

In the first week you advised you did not want the mother at camp.  No mention of court orders, visitation documents, or custody paperwork being presented to the camp.  Just that you did not want her at camp.  On the second week, you did present some documentation, but expecting all of the camp staff to be fully aware of this may be an over reach.  Your issue is with your son's mother.  If she is in violation of custody agreements and court orders, then refer that through the legal system.

Not excusing the staff and likely they could have done more.  At the end of the day the issue is with the mom, not the camp.  Hold her responsible for her actions.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One aspect I am still not clear on.  At camps I have attended, "visitors" (even parents) who are not registered campers, must check in at the camp "office" and show ID, then get a wristband to show that they have been admitted.  They cannot (or should not) be able to just park their car and then go wandering around looking for their kid.  If this procedure was not followed, I would consider that a YP issue and needs to be corrected.  It is also unclear to me if the Scout was part of a troop attending camp, or was a "provisional" camper?  One cannot just show up at camp and pay your money on the first day.  Was he not registered in advance, at which point the custody issue should have been clearly identified on the application?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not a lawyer, nor do I play one on TV (or the internet), but I'm assuming the court order only applies to the 2 parents.  I can't imagine it's enforceable on the camp.

It can be used to say the mother is not authorized to pick up the child. It's a little more questionable if the mother can be there during camp.

This might have to be resolved by going back to court if the mother is in violation of the court order.

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just a note:

There is a professional service staff adviser for every district or Council activity.  Always, always seek them out on matters involving legal action. 

Each State has some degree of difference in how it handles family law issue.  Parents, whether residential or otherwise, are best served consulting with their attorney. 

No parent, not one, should get wrapped up if their child and his other parent spend program hours at scout camp. It’s a time for the scout to bond with other youth and adults. If Mom could make camp and Dad couldn’t, guess what...I don’t have a lot of sympathy for Dad. 

Suffice it to say I have earned my post divorce parenting MB. 

Edited by John-in-KC

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×