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Chapter 11 announced


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16 minutes ago, Eagle1993 said:

I don't think this is a good day.  A good day would have been a settlement out of court.  Significant resources, financial and personal, will be focused on this bankruptcy at National, Regional and Council level.  Perhaps in 2+ years, after we emerge, it will be a good day.

Sadly I agree.  This will get a lot messier before it's done.  

I am not a lawyer, but understanding the issues well enough here I expect the lawyers for the victims will turn their attention to local councils.  Either lawyers will:

  • go after councils for specific cases
  • argue that council assets should be included alongside national assets in the bankruptcy.

On this fund - I can't imagine how our council today will afford to pay into such a fund.  Year after year the council goes around hat in hand and asks for donations just to pay the bills.  How will they take 30, 40, 50% of that and divert it to a fund.  I can't imagine more fundraising will be available to pay for it.

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What is legally right is not always morally right.

In order for BSA to demonstrate that two thirds of its assets are restricted and unavailable to creditors they would need to have been incredibly disciplined in their accounting and bookkeeping over t

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1 minute ago, Jameson76 said:

The optics are going to be the hard part.  The group that BSA needs to sell (and continue to sell) is the new families that traditionally join as Cubs.  Those of us in units that are functioning, this is sort of a non-event

How do we (BSA as a whole) bring in new Scouts (Cubs / Scouts BSA / Etc) when the families not invested in the BSA see the Bankruptcy of the Boy Scouts and the driving reason for Chapter 11 is sex abuse cases.  That is going to be a hard sell....just saying

Precisely the issue I've had with this all along, and that the BSA has (until now) been pretty terrible at reassuring parents that things are not at all like they were 30+ years ago. The lawsuits should be heard, settlements made, compensation paid out. But when all is said and done, will there be a chance for the organization to continue? To survive? Unless the BSA can get ahead of the optics problem, the answer to that is probably "no".

It's unfortunate. While I believe all victims should be heard and compensated, I also very selfishly look at it from the perspective of a parent who has kids just getting started in the organization and realizing that they might not have much of an opportunity to be scouts because of the actions of some horrible men decades ago.

And then as a leader, knowing what we go through in the name of youth protection, and knowing that today's BSA is truly a top-notch organization when it comes to youth protection, it's saddening that all of it might not be enough to escape the stigma of the past. Recent articles have labeled the BSA as a "haven for pedophiles" because of past abuse cases. Between those articles, those kinds statements, and now this bankruptcy filing, I'm not sure how we can ever break free of the notion that we're this evil organization, a place for abusers to thrive.

In June we had our annual Pack recruitment event/open-house, and attendance was less than the year before. I wonder what attendance/interest will look like this year...

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3 minutes ago, ParkMan said:

Sadly I agree.  This will get a lot messier before it's done.  

I am not a lawyer, but understanding the issues well enough here I expect the lawyers for the victims will turn their attention to local councils.  Either lawyers will:

  • go after councils for specific cases
  • argue that council assets should be included alongside national assets in the bankruptcy.

On this fund - I can't imagine how our council today will afford to pay into such a fund.  Year after year the council goes around hat in hand and asks for donations just to pay the bills.  How will they take 30, 40, 50% of that and divert it to a fund.  I can't imagine more fundraising will be available to pay for it.

I hope this isn't the case.   I don't believe a council, say in Indiana, should be forced to sell some of it's assets to pay the victim of an abuse case that occurred in California. 

 

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8 minutes ago, FireStone said:

Precisely the issue I've had with this all along, and that the BSA has (until now) been pretty terrible at reassuring parents that things are not at all like they were 30+ years ago. The lawsuits should be heard, settlements made, compensation paid out. But when all is said and done, will there be a chance for the organization to continue? To survive? Unless the BSA can get ahead of the optics problem, the answer to that is probably "no".

It's unfortunate. While I believe all victims should be heard and compensated, I also very selfishly look at it from the perspective of a parent who has kids just getting started in the organization and realizing that they might not have much of an opportunity to be scouts because of the actions of some horrible men decades ago.

And then as a leader, knowing what we go through in the name of youth protection, and knowing that today's BSA is truly a top-notch organization when it comes to youth protection, it's saddening that all of it might not be enough to escape the stigma of the past. Recent articles have labeled the BSA as a "haven for pedophiles" because of past abuse cases. Between those articles, those kinds statements, and now this bankruptcy filing, I'm not sure how we can ever break free of the notion that we're this evil organization, a place for abusers to thrive.

In June we had our annual Pack recruitment event/open-house, and attendance was less than the year before. I wonder what attendance/interest will look like this year...

At the Cub Scout level particularly... this is where we fully explain 2 Deep Leadership and YPT.  The next part of that discussion is the handing of an application and how they can be part of that 2 Deep leadership and make sure all the Youth are safe.  Don't drop and run, stay and be involved with your kid.  Same thing at the Troop level.  Get parents involved to be on the Committee..   sign up to be an ASM.  Be involved.

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Not very scientific on my part, but I just scrolled through 150+ comments regarding this story on the Wall Street Journal website.

In summary, many commenters that support (or used to support) scouting feel bankruptcy is the death knell of the BSA.  Not a single comment about about sunny skies and clearer sailing in the future.  Even pro-scouting commenters stated in so many words that the BSA was a moribund organization previous to the Chapter 11 announcement.

No doubt recruiting, fundraising, and public support will be difficult in the future.  Unit level volunteers will carry the water and face the brunt of public opinion, while "commissioned BSA professionals" will conduct meetings and luncheons with attorneys in their headquarters.

And when times get tough, fellow volunteers, we can continue to be encouraged by the rallying cry that National issued last fall:  "Sell More Popcorn."

Edited by desertrat77
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6 minutes ago, desertrat77 said:

the rallying cry that National issued last fall:  "Sell More Popcorn."

So....if all the Scouts in all areas (1.8 million) sold like 4 billion dollars worth of popcorn, the profits would put the BSA in the black.  Each Scout just needs to sell (on average) about $2,500 worth of popcorn, and if all sold the $60 tins of chocolate covers popcorn that is really only 42 of these each.

That's really only 67 million tins of chocolate covered popcorn....so LET'S GET SELLING 😁

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6 minutes ago, Jameson76 said:

So....if all the Scouts in all areas (1.8 million) sold like 4 billion dollars worth of popcorn, the profits would put the BSA in the black.  Each Scout just needs to sell (on average) about $2,500 worth of popcorn, and if all sold the $60 tins of chocolate covers popcorn that is really only 42 of these each.

That's really only 67 million tins of chocolate covered popcorn....so LET'S GET SELLING 😁

Jameson, your proposal is sound and the math checks out.  It would work even better if we encouraged scouts to drop out of school and sell popcorn full time..... :)

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7 minutes ago, desertrat77 said:

Not very scientific on my part, but I just scrolled through 150+ comments regarding this story on the Wall Street Journal website.

In summary, many commenters that support (or used to support) scouting feel bankruptcy is the death knell of the BSA.  Not a single comment about about sunny skies and clearer sailing in the future.  Even pro-scouting commenters stated in so many words that the BSA was a moribund organization previous to the Chapter 11 announcement.

No doubt recruiting, fundraising, and public support will be difficult in the future.  Unit level volunteers will carry the water and face the brunt of public opinion, while "commissioned BSA professionals" will conduct meetings and luncheons with attorneys in their headquarters.

And when times get tough, fellow volunteers, we can continue to be encouraged by the rallying cry that National issued last fall:  "Sell More Popcorn."

I fully expect to see membership fees either double or triple in the next year or two.  If the BSA can find a way to not hit us with another increase, it would be great otherwise it may really scare off those who are on the fence and pondering the future of the organization.

My son will be 13 next month and is a First Class currently.  I am going to try and light a fire under him to push forward towards Eagle.  I am hoping we can hang long enough.   Best I can figure with the time requirements for rank, it would be about 18 months till he can earn Eagle.  I feel that is kind of young, but I would like to see him complete it out and earn Eagle before the BSA dies off(hopefully not!).   

As for the more popcorn speech we will undoubtedly get.   If we are truly to survive, we need another product for fall sales.   I have no problem selling the $5.00 camp cards and we all know the Girl Scouts have no problem selling their $4-5 box of cookies.  We MUST have something that can compete with those price points earlier in the year.  Is the profit margin smaller per sell? Yes.  Do you stand a chance of someone buying 3-4 items for $20 instead of one item for $20?  Yes, I believe so.   I live on a side of town that is considered one of the poorer sides so $20+ popcorn is a very hard sell.   $5-10 for something is much easier.

Council fees will also increase.  As the Troop CC I am hoping that we can start to fundraise for re-charter next year just after summer camp so whatever announcement they drop in our laps next October won't be such a sticker shock again. 

 

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I concur with DR. 

Here is the scouting news wire post. That said, the letter that opens this is solid

 

The Boy Scouts of America Files for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy to Equitably Compensate Victims While Ensuring Scouting Continues Across the Country

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Local Councils are Not Filing for Bankruptcy as They are Legally Separate and Distinct Organizations

corporate-BSA-220x191.pngIRVING, TX – February 18, 2020 – The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) today announced that the national organization has filed for bankruptcy under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code to achieve two key objectives: equitably compensate victims who were harmed during their time in Scouting and continue carrying out its mission for years to come. The BSA intends to use the Chapter 11 process to create a Victims Compensation Trust that would provide equitable compensation to victims.

Scouting programs, including unit meetings and activities, council events, other Scouting adventures and countless service projects, will continue throughout this process and for many years to come. The BSA fully intends to maintain its commitments to its members, families, volunteer leaders, employees, retirees, donors and alumni to the fullest extent permitted by bankruptcy laws. The organization also will pay its vendors and partners for all goods and services delivered from today forward.

Local councils, which provide programming, financial, facility and administrative support to Scouting units in their communities, have not filed for bankruptcy. They are legally separate, distinct and financially independent from the national organization.

“The BSA cares deeply about all victims of abuse and sincerely apologizes to anyone who was harmed during their time in Scouting. We are outraged that there have been times when individuals took advantage of our programs to harm innocent children,” said Roger Mosby, President and Chief Executive Officer. “While we know nothing can undo the tragic abuse that victims suffered, we believe the Chapter 11 process – with the proposed Trust structure – will provide equitable compensation to all victims while maintaining the BSA’s important mission.”

Establishment of the Victims Compensation Trust and Support for Victims of Abuse

The BSA has an important duty to keep children safe, supported and protected while preparing them for their futures, and the organization has every intention of continuing to fulfill these important responsibilities.

Tragically, there have been times when individuals took advantage of the BSA’s programs to harm children. The BSA firmly believes that a proposed Victims Compensation Trust structure is the best means of compensating victims in a way that is equitable and protects their identities. The BSA encourages victims to come forward to file a claim as the bankruptcy process moves forward and will provide clear and comprehensive notices about how to do so.

The BSA has, for years, funded in-person counseling for any current or former Scout who was a victim of abuse as well as victims’ family members, by a provider of their choice. As an extension of this commitment to supporting victims, the BSA recently announced a partnership with 1in6, a trusted national resource for male survivors, to expand their services so that victims of abuse are able to anonymously access vital support from trained advocates when and how they need it. Victims can access 1in6 services at www.1in6.org/BSA. This is a multiyear commitment, which the BSA feels is an important component of its ongoing efforts to support victims.

Maintaining Programming and Upholding Commitments to All Stakeholders

Scouting will continue to provide unparalleled programs to young people – keeping them safe, supported and protected as it prepares them for their futures. The BSA today has some of the strongest, expert-informed youth protection policies found in any youth-serving organization, including mandatory youth protection training and background checks for all volunteers and staff, as well as policies that prohibit one-on-one interaction between youth and adults and require all volunteers and staff to report any suspected abuse to law enforcement.

Additional information about the BSA’s multilayered safeguards, our commitment to support victims, and our efforts to be part of the broader solution to child abuse is available at www.scouting.org/youth-safety.

Read the BSA’s Open Letter to Victims here.

More information and updates about the restructuring are available via the national organization’s dedicated restructuring website, www.BSArestructuring.org. Victims, as well as vendors and other potential creditors who have questions about their claims may contact Restructuring@scouting.org or call 1-866-907-BSA1 for the fastest response.

The BSA is represented in the restructuring by Sidley Austin LLP as legal counsel and Alvarez & Marsal North America LLC, as financial advisor.

About the Boy Scouts of America
The Boy Scouts of America provides the nation’s foremost youth program of character development and values-based leadership training, which helps young people be “Prepared. For Life.®” The Scouting organization is composed of nearly 2.2 million youth members between the ages of 5 and 21 and approximately 800,000 volunteers in local councils throughout the United States and its territories. For more information on the Boy Scouts of America, please visit www.Scouting.org.

Learn about the BSA’s youth protection policies in place today at www.scouting.org/youth-safety.

 

Follow official BSA social channels for updates from the BSA, Cub Scouts, BSA Publications, High Adventure Bases, and the rest of the BSA family.

 

Edited by John-in-KC
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12 minutes ago, Jackdaws said:

Council fees will also increase.  As the Troop CC I am hoping that we can start to fundraise for re-charter next year just after summer camp so whatever announcement they drop in our laps next October won't be such a sticker shock again. 

Councils may choose (and most probably will) to set a council program/activity fee.  That fee may not exceed the $60 national registration fee.  We have been told that as part of the recent increase, there would be no more last minute changes to the fee structure.  Any changes must be announced early, nothing to come after May.

Edited by MikeS72
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I also expect some snide comments from people to the scouts who are out there currently trying to sell camp cards.  You know the whole " why should I pay for an organization who abuses kids? " or something to that effect.  It is not the scouts fault and their adults are forced to step in and try to get them to move along.  

Sigh. 

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