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5thGenTexan

What Would You Do.... Next Time?

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My question pertains to my Uhhh Associate Den Leader.  On two occasions I had parents come to me and ask if their Scout should wear their uniform to an upcoming event.  Both of those times as I was explaining why they should this associate of mine decides to tell them no.  On another occasion at camp we were all in uniform to head to breakfast and morning flags.  He and his son in Pack t-shirts if we have to go in full uniform.  I told him per my discussion with the CM the previous night that yes... They had to wear it to breakfast.  He walks off in a huff and loudly complaining about he doesn't understand why since its going to be hot later in the day.  This loud complaint around our Scouts and another unit we were sharing the campsite with.  I have been kind, but next time I feel a different approach is warranted.  BTW I am the CM now.

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You could make e effort to have a chat with him as to what he has against the uniform. Has he had a negative experience from pompous windbags? Does his son not like it? When does he think it should be worn?

Or you could tell him to that it's just the way it is and say next time you'll have a loudspeaker ready so he can let even more people know what a jackass his son's CM is.

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On 8/17/2019 at 7:45 PM, John-in-KC said:

You do not have to re register this adult. Coordinate with your CC. 

The CC was CM last year and I did coordinate with him.  He chose to take no action.  I have also witnessed this "Den Leader" vaping at camp on two occasions.  I don't want to have to get the COR involved, but I am not against taking that route if I need to.

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Posted (edited)

Sometimes parents are the worst part of scouting.

When dealing with problem parents, you have to decide if it is affecting just their Scout or the entire Pack.

If it is just hurting their Scout, I try to work with the parent and "do my best" to help the parent understand how their behavior is negatively affecting their Scout’s experiences.  When having discussions with the parent, have face to face meetings as email messages tend to have their intentions distorted.  Often Scouts with parents like these are the ones that need scouting the most, and it is in the best interest of their Scout if we can somehow fix the problem(s).  So if through a respectful conversation, I can get the parents to back off and stop interfering with the scouting program, that is a huge win for me and for their Scout.

However, if the parent's behavior is creating a toxic environment that harms the entire Pack, I would dismiss them and their Scout from the Pack.  Unfortunately, you loose a Scout who really needs the scouting program, but it isn't worth negative effects on the entire unit.  As Spock said "Logic clearly dictates that the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few."

Edited by Tatung42

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9 hours ago, 5thGenTexan said:

The CC was CM last year and I did coordinate with him.  He chose to take no action.  I have also witnessed this "Den Leader" vaping at camp on two occasions.  I don't want to have to get the COR involved, but I am not against taking that route if I need to.

I will say this till I am blue in my face.  The COR is supposed to be involved! Yes, for many troops this is a ceremonial position that belongs to the CO and puts his name on some forms a few times a year.  That isn't the intended purpose.  The COR is supposed to be the official representative of the CO to make sure that the unit serves the purpose of the CO and represents them well.  If you have a situation where a Scouter might need to be removed he needs to be involved.  If you have a Unit Commissioner they can be a great source of advice as well.  

 

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9 minutes ago, mds3d said:

I will say this till I am blue in my face.  The COR is supposed to be involved! Yes, for many troops this is a ceremonial position that belongs to the CO and puts his name on some forms a few times a year.  That isn't the intended purpose.  The COR is supposed to be the official representative of the CO to make sure that the unit serves the purpose of the CO and represents them well.  If you have a situation where a Scouter might need to be removed he needs to be involved.  If you have a Unit Commissioner they can be a great source of advice as well.  

 

I have our COR saved as a contact in my phone, he shows up to events in uniform.  He is involved and even occasionally comes to committee meetings.  I brought this up to the CM last year and it went no where, and he is CC this year.  I am not sure what the deal is, but all of a sudden he is not open to any criticism of the guy.  I dont know if he is paying special attention trying to get him to perform his position better or what.  We are having one of those times of bad adult drama going on.  Believe me, it goes much deeper with this guy that just this one issue.  Very frustrating.

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I read the topic a few times.  At that point, I don't see a reason to let tell this person to leave the pack.

What I see going on here is a fellow who feels empowered to do what he wants to.

In this case, I would encourage you to assert yourself more forcefully.  If he starts to counteract what we're saying as CM, simply let the guy talk, thank him for his comment, and then do what you were going to do anyways. Thanks Bob for your comment.  Yes, as I was saying the Scouts need to wear their uniform to the flag ceremony.

I don't think you have to take the nuclear option here.

 

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If you are now cubmaster, why not promulgate a set of "when to wear the Class A...Class B..."  uniform policies and circulate that to the den leaders and families?   Then, if the adult in question is not following an established policy, it is easier to question him about not supporting Pack guidelines.  It is also easier to get the other volunteers to back you up.  Make it a group policy, not your policy, and you might just get other volunteers to shame him into compliance.

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We (me the cubmaster) set a uniform policy with the Den Leaders. And in this age of email, this policy can certainly be sent to parents for their own information if you like. But after that, I just left it up to the parents and leaders. Maybe its easier for me to suggest not letting the little things bog down the big things, because I can look back at my experience. But at the Cub level of volunteering, uniform is not worth the the frustration and stress. There will always be that 10% who don't desire to be uniform with the group. 20% at the troop level. As a CM, I can assure you bigger frustrations are coming your way.  

It's not that I'm not a uniform person, you will find in past forum discussions that I'm very pro uniform method at the troop level. Uniform at the troop level is a scout decision and making right or wrong choices is a values perspective to me. Uniform at the cub level is an adult decision in most cases and adults who willingly defy policies tend to boldly defend their choices.  Pick your hills.

Barry

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I didn't mention it in the original post, but I have also personally witnessed this leader vaping in camp around Scouts.

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