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Chapter 11 announced

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4 minutes ago, Eagle1993 said:

I was talking with several ASMs recently.  We were attempting to think of a youth organization, today, that has a better youth protection policy than BSA.  We couldn't think of one.  Sports teams, schools, churches, etc. typically have less restrictive policies than BSA.  We remarked the number of times we saw 1 on 1 contact, no 2 deep leadership, no YPT training, etc.  So, the lawyers, are essentially destroying the organization that probably has one of the best youth protection polices in place today due to sins of 20+ years ago.

That is all true but you also have to look at why YPT is so necessary.  I have read many comments on this board about scouters who discourage parents from attending camp outs because they feel that they get in the way of the patrol method, etc. There is no other youth organization that repeatedly has adult leaders take relatively small groups of kids to remote places for  hikes or overnight camping activities. There is some of that in sports as kids get older, but it's not common. Most youth in travel sports travel and stay with their families, not coaches. Most youth sports activities are conducted in an open field or gym with parents all around. Dug outs and sidelines are in full view. Other team's coaches, umpires, facility managers are generally in view. I really don't worry at all about one coach running a game or a practice on an open field with a dozen or so kids; I do worry about two adults takings kids on a 5 hour hike or camp out. BSA's YPT program is the most comprehensive, but it should have been long ago because the nature of the activities. 

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1 hour ago, Eagle1993 said:

I was talking with several ASMs recently.  We were attempting to think of a youth organization, today, that has a better youth protection policy than BSA.  We couldn't think of one.  Sports teams, schools, churches, etc. typically have less restrictive policies than BSA.  We remarked the number of times we saw 1 on 1 contact, no 2 deep leadership, no YPT training, etc.  So, the lawyers, are essentially destroying the organization that probably has one of the best youth protection polices in place today due to sins of 20+ years ago.

Yes, that's the unintended consequence in all of this.

But, I know there is a vocal percentage that feels the BSA must be held accountable for what happened in the past - including a number of people regularly posting on this topic.  What we are beginning to see is that the cost to the BSA is very likely the liquidation of the assets of national and the local councils.  It was always an unrealistic expectation that the BSA would have to pay but find a way for insurance to cover most of the bill.  

Edited by ParkMan
clarified a thought

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1 hour ago, yknot said:

BSA's YPT program is the most comprehensive, but it should have been long ago because the nature of the activities. 

"Should" have been, yes.  But no one understood the need and ... from what I understand ... no other youth program had an effective YPT before BSA.  This is an understanding change that has happened continually since the 1980s and has only become well understood late in the 1990s to early 2000s.  IMHO, BSA did a good job.  Consider these cases go back to the 1960s ... if you assume 3 million average members (assume turning over every ten years ... some more ... some less) ... that's 18m youth members.  Abuse is never good, but I suspect statistically it's about the same as any other youth organization of the time.

Edited by fred8033

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4 hours ago, Eagle1993 said:

How did it grow to 82,000?  I thought this was always in the 10,000 range (max).  The best "win" for the plaintiffs I have seen is the Milwaukee Archdiocese.  It took 4 years in court.  They were able to reduce the claims by 43% and hold payments down to $64K each.  With 82,000 claims, the equivalent for the BSA would be a $3.0B settlement.  

I think we are on the edge of liquidation.  BSA will need to make an offer just short of liquidation … keep enough so they can survive but provide so much that pursuing further legal action on the plaintiff side wouldn't be worth it.  That probably means selling off most if not all HA bases and the artwork.  It will also probably mean selling off a large portion of council properties (or councils will be the next target).

Incredibly sad as the youth today will pay the price for something that occurred decades ago by people no longer involved in scouting.  Given that the lawyers will probably take 40%, the individual victims will be walking away with very little.

 

Fortunately, BSA doesn't necessarily NEED the approval of the plaintiffs in order to get the Chapter 11 bankruptcy approved.  If they come up with an offer that is fair and equitable, and the plaintiff attorneys reject it and insist upon liquidation, the judge can simply overrule their objection and approve the plan anyway.  Particularly if it seems like the plaintiff attorneys aren't really bargaining in good faith. (ie: their mission is liquidation, not finding a deal that works)

 

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If instead of keeping secret files all those years, what if the BSA (or Catholic Church or schools) had immediately reported whatever information they had, verified or not, to the local authorities and then removed the suspect volunteer/employee pending investigation results. 

Remember the old discussions to protect the accused volunteer/employee from false accusation, that the BSA would investigate and act accordingly or not. Some thought priority should be given to the victims. In 1988, the BSA hired FBI agent Kenneth Lannings to develop YP policies. No criminal background checks, training was not mandatory, and volunteers were to told/tested to contact the SE first , not the police but it was a start.

Despite the BSA stating they did all that was legally required, I wish the hell they had called the cops. 

My $0.02,

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2 hours ago, yknot said:

That is all true but you also have to look at why YPT is so necessary.  I have read many comments on this board about scouters who discourage parents from attending camp outs because they feel that they get in the way of the patrol method, etc. There is no other youth organization that repeatedly has adult leaders take relatively small groups of kids to remote places for  hikes or overnight camping activities. There is some of that in sports as kids get older, but it's not common. Most youth in travel sports travel and stay with their families, not coaches. Most youth sports activities are conducted in an open field or gym with parents all around. Dug outs and sidelines are in full view. Other team's coaches, umpires, facility managers are generally in view. I really don't worry at all about one coach running a game or a practice on an open field with a dozen or so kids; I do worry about two adults takings kids on a 5 hour hike or camp out. BSA's YPT program is the most comprehensive, but it should have been long ago because the nature of the activities. 

Lets just be clear here, for the most part, the scouters who are taking kids out into the woods are parents.  It's not like there are there is this large cohort of unmarried childless people serving as scout leaders who are trying to keep the annoying parents away.  When you see scouters (like me) on here talking about getting rid of the parents on camp-outs all they are really saying is "We don't want people uninformed about the program interfering with the program".  After all, the only difference between a parent and a scouter is training and a piece of paper sent in with a registration fee.

And as far as the safety of sports vs scouts, sure there's plenty of parents around in Rec League sports, but in official Middle/High school sports or the competitive traveling sports?  Not so much.  I think you have to differentiate risks in order to weigh them fairly.  Personally, I think the risk of abuse is higher in sports because there are so many more people involved and they are run so loosely that it would be fairly easy for something to slip through the cracks and isolate a child temporarily.  But I'll agree that the inherent risk of death or other physical harm is greater in scouts as you are further from medical attention while engaging in potentially more dangerous activities. (like an ax yard or fire building)

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Unless the focus can be moved to the very real fact BSA tried where nobody else did, and that their current YP is the model today, the mess will continue.  You would hope that there might be a real writer somewhere that might find a media source that could get the real story out, the one that shows BSA had a lower percentage of verified problems during that peak time; that they came up with a way to hopefully avoid some of these people that prey on society everywhere; that the current YP is the model for others, even as the lawsuits continue; that the idea that BSA or anyone could have stopped these problems, especially in an age that had different points of view and methods of dealing with things; and that holding today's BSA responsible for what were often decisions of parents and past societal norms is simply wrong, especially since BSA is attempting to come to a fair accounting, even though it is an unfair expectation in our warped legal system.  As I have noted before, this likely would not fly in hardly any other country, and our legal system needs a serious overhaul.

 

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NPR now reporting that over 88,500 have filed claims.  Deadline in 1 hour.

Sounds like the next step is a 3rd party will review all of these claims to see which are valid.  

A plaintiff lawyer is warning other youth organizations they better get ready and use the BSA as a warning message.

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52 minutes ago, RememberSchiff said:

If instead of keeping secret files all those years, what if the BSA (or Catholic Church or schools) had immediately reported whatever information they had, verified or not, to the local authorities and then removed the suspect volunteer/employee pending investigation results. 

Remember the old discussions to protect the accused volunteer/employee from false accusation, that the BSA would investigate and act accordingly or not. Some thought priority should be given to the victims. In 1988, the BSA hired FBI agent Kenneth Lannings to develop YP policies. No criminal background checks, training was not mandatory, and volunteers were to told/tested to contact the SE first , not the police but it was a start.

Despite the BSA stating they did all that was legally required, I wish the hell they had called the cops. 

The majority of the cases are claimed to have occurred 30 or more years ago though the large number reported in the NYT above has not been characterized that I am aware.  The time period is important because before the late 1980's, there was liability associated with reporting things such as abuse that was not subsequently supported via a court case.  The accused would sue for defamation of character and would likely win.  In the late 1980's and early 1990's, states began protecting accusers.  If the BSA had reported all of those cases, the councils would have been sued unless there was a successful criminal trial.  

Ironically, if the BSA had not tried to protect children with the ineligible volunteer files, then it would not likely be in the same situation as it finds itself.  The BSA is being punished for doing what was right even though such a list is what the CDC recommends to protect children.

 

 

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21 minutes ago, Eagle1993 said:

NPR now reporting that over 88,500 have filed claims.  Deadline in 1 hour.

Sounds like the next step is a 3rd party will review all of these claims to see which are valid.  

A plaintiff lawyer is warning other youth organizations they better get ready and use the BSA as a warning message.

This is going to get messy. Looking at the Catholic Church, the Scouts, the Schools, I don't think any other youth organizations were doing any better. I can only hope by blind luck they might have done better. 

I mean read this article, then tell me what the BSA would have done to prevent this abuse to Frank Spinelli? https://www.npr.org/2020/11/13/933924470/boy-scouts-of-america-sexual-abuse-victims-seek-justice-in-bankruptcy-court Given how trusting his parents were, I don't think even todays BSA YPT protection would have prevented this, unless Frank told another Scout or leader and they reported it. Some of the abuse probably happened at Scouting events, but the perpetrator had easy access to victims outside of Scouting too. Even if somebody did, reporting a NYPD officer the 1970's? Do you really think it would have been vigorously investigated? 

If parents were this trusting with their kids to adults from other youth organizations, they're all going down. 

Edited by Sentinel947

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59 minutes ago, elitts said:

Lets just be clear here, for the most part, the scouters who are taking kids out into the woods are parents.  It's not like there are there is this large cohort of unmarried childless people serving as scout leaders who are trying to keep the annoying parents away.  When you see scouters (like me) on here talking about getting rid of the parents on camp-outs all they are really saying is "We don't want people uninformed about the program interfering with the program".  After all, the only difference between a parent and a scouter is training and a piece of paper sent in with a registration fee.

And as far as the safety of sports vs scouts, sure there's plenty of parents around in Rec League sports, but in official Middle/High school sports or the competitive traveling sports?  Not so much.  I think you have to differentiate risks in order to weigh them fairly.  Personally, I think the risk of abuse is higher in sports because there are so many more people involved and they are run so loosely that it would be fairly easy for something to slip through the cracks and isolate a child temporarily.  But I'll agree that the inherent risk of death or other physical harm is greater in scouts as you are further from medical attention while engaging in potentially more dangerous activities. (like an ax yard or fire building)

Parents often are the abusers but the more eyes around the better. In today's environment, if a Scoutmaster said he preferred that non ASM parents didn't attend a camp out, most parents wouldn't view that well. A good YPT program has always been essential for BSA because of what it does with kids. My point is that to pat ourselves on the back for it overmuch is like praising a lifeguard for having lifeguard training. And one small point when comparing BSA with sports or other school activities: kids involved in such activities today are rarely out of the view of a security camera. Cameras are on buses, weight rooms, the school campus, playing fields, etc.  There are almost always extra eyes on them. That's not the case, though, in scouts.

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Am I reading these right? It appears to me, at the last minute Councils are also filing  proof of claims as did CO's? Dockets 1685 thru 1682 and 1680 which are titled 

STIPULATION REGARDING CERTAIN LOCAL COUNCIL INDEMNITY, CONTRIBUTION, AND RELATED CLAIMS

Each stipulation has attached a list of "Specified Local Councils" with authorization and contact information.

Effect  of  Stipulation.    This  Stipulation  shall  have  the  same  effect  as  the  timely  filing  of  a  proof  of  claim  with  the  Claims  and  Noticing  Agent;  provided,  however,  that  the  Specified Local Councils each assert that neither this stipulation nor the filing of this stipulation on the docket or on the official claims register shall constitute, or be deemed to constitute: (a) a waiver or release of the Specified Local Councils’ respective rights against any person, entity, or property; (b) consent by any Specified Local Council to the jurisdiction of the Bankruptcy Court or any other court; (c) a waiver of the Specified Local Councils’ respective rights to have final orders in non-core matters entered only after de novo review by the United States District Court for  the  District  of  Delaware  with  respect  to  the  BSA’s  chapter  11  case;  (d)  a  waiver  of  the  Specified Local Councils’ respective rights to withdraw the reference or otherwise challenge the jurisdiction of the Bankruptcy Court, or to assert that the reference has already been withdrawn, with  respect  to  (i)  the  subject  matter  of  this  stipulation,  (ii)  any  objection  or  other  proceeding  commenced  with  respect  thereto,  or  (iii)  any  other  proceeding  commenced  in  the  BSA’s chapter 11 case against or otherwise involving any of the Specified Local Councils; (e) a waiver of the Specified Local Councils’ respective rights to a trial by jury in any proceeding so triable in the BSA’s chapter 11 case or any case, controversy, or proceeding relating to such case; or (f) an election  of  remedies.    The  BSA  reserves  the  right  to  challenge  the  assertions  set  forth  in  the  foregoing  proviso,  and  this  stipulation  shall  not  prejudice  or  affect  the  right  of  any  party  in  interest to challenge such assertions. 

https://casedocs.omniagentsolutions.com/cmsvol2/pub_47373/861526_1680.pdf

https://casedocs.omniagentsolutions.com/cmsvol2/pub_47373/861546_1682.pdf

https://casedocs.omniagentsolutions.com/cmsvol2/pub_47373/861552_1683.pdf

https://casedocs.omniagentsolutions.com/cmsvol2/pub_47373/861558_1684.pdf

https://casedocs.omniagentsolutions.com/cmsvol2/pub_47373/861621_1685.pdf

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52 minutes ago, RememberSchiff said:

Am I reading these right? It appears to me, at the last minute Councils are also filing  proof of claims as did CO's? Dockets 1685 thru 1682 and 1680 which are titled 

STIPULATION REGARDING CERTAIN LOCAL COUNCIL INDEMNITY, CONTRIBUTION, AND RELATED CLAIMS....

If memory serves, some time in the 1970s, National agreed to take responsibility for councils liability insurance in exchange for councils paying into the insurance fund. Just as national promised to protect COs, they also promised to protect councils.

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10 minutes ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

If memory serves, some time in the 1970s, National agreed to take responsibility for councils liability insurance in exchange for councils paying into the insurance fund. Just as national promised to protect COs, they also promised to protect councils.

That makes sense.  If the theory is that claimants will go after the local councils, then that seems very similar to the CO idea where they all submitted claims.  

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10 hours ago, RememberSchiff said:

Am I reading these right? It appears to me, at the last minute Councils are also filing  proof of claims as did CO's? Dockets 1685 thru 1682 and 1680 which are titled 

STIPULATION REGARDING CERTAIN LOCAL COUNCIL INDEMNITY, CONTRIBUTION, AND RELATED CLAIMS

Each stipulation has attached a list of "Specified Local Councils" with authorization and contact information.

Effect  of  Stipulation.    This  Stipulation  shall  have  the  same  effect  as  the  timely  filing  of  a  proof  of  claim  with  the  Claims  and  Noticing  Agent;  provided,  however,  that  the  Specified Local Councils each assert that neither this stipulation nor the filing of this stipulation on the docket or on the official claims register shall constitute, or be deemed to constitute: (a) a waiver or release of the Specified Local Councils’ respective rights against any person, entity, or property; (b) consent by any Specified Local Council to the jurisdiction of the Bankruptcy Court or any other court; (c) a waiver of the Specified Local Councils’ respective rights to have final orders in non-core matters entered only after de novo review by the United States District Court for  the  District  of  Delaware  with  respect  to  the  BSA’s  chapter  11  case;  (d)  a  waiver  of  the  Specified Local Councils’ respective rights to withdraw the reference or otherwise challenge the jurisdiction of the Bankruptcy Court, or to assert that the reference has already been withdrawn, with  respect  to  (i)  the  subject  matter  of  this  stipulation,  (ii)  any  objection  or  other  proceeding  commenced  with  respect  thereto,  or  (iii)  any  other  proceeding  commenced  in  the  BSA’s chapter 11 case against or otherwise involving any of the Specified Local Councils; (e) a waiver of the Specified Local Councils’ respective rights to a trial by jury in any proceeding so triable in the BSA’s chapter 11 case or any case, controversy, or proceeding relating to such case; or (f) an election  of  remedies.    The  BSA  reserves  the  right  to  challenge  the  assertions  set  forth  in  the  foregoing  proviso,  and  this  stipulation  shall  not  prejudice  or  affect  the  right  of  any  party  in  interest to challenge such assertions. 

https://casedocs.omniagentsolutions.com/cmsvol2/pub_47373/861526_1680.pdf

https://casedocs.omniagentsolutions.com/cmsvol2/pub_47373/861546_1682.pdf

https://casedocs.omniagentsolutions.com/cmsvol2/pub_47373/861552_1683.pdf

https://casedocs.omniagentsolutions.com/cmsvol2/pub_47373/861558_1684.pdf

https://casedocs.omniagentsolutions.com/cmsvol2/pub_47373/861621_1685.pdf

It seems like the big, big question is if the court sees the councils as completely independent organizations OR part of the overall Boy Scouts of America.  At this point, I think National will have to sell off all assets including the HA camps … nothing will be left other than the structure/program. I see no way they keep anything given the # of claims. 

The battle line will move to council assets.  I wonder if this is a way to protect councils post bankruptcy without including council properties as part of the payout.  Curious as it seems like nearly all councils have filed claims now.

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