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No. Yes.    Yes.  The guys at national are idiots.

As mentioned before in this thread, allow 18 year old seniors to be registered as youth.   While that doesn't help 19 or 20 year olds, it addresses the biggest issue. I would have the rule be for

One problem with intense litigation: … it discourages voluntary reporting. But, from what I’ve come to understand, it depends. Formidable predators (let’s consider the adult serial rapist) may

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12 minutes ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

And yes there are some jobs that do require folks to be one-on-one, and not have 2 adults present. @David COmentioned teachers. I can add health care providers. Do we really need to call National and report all the doctors, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, nurses, physical therapists, etc who have had one-on-one contact with Scouts when the Scouts were their patients?

And don't say I do not take  YP policy seriously. You can read about some of the things I have had to deal with on this matter in other posts.

 

Regardless of the application of BSA YPT, I can still make a good argument that many of those professions don't need to alone with a minor all that much. 

Teachers typically have more than one student in the classroom at a time. After school activities typically take place in groups of students. If a student needs additional coaching from a teacher after school, the library or cafeteria could serve as a more public place than an isolated classroom. After the Larry Nassar/USA Gymnastics situation, I'm really questioning how much 1 on 1 contact with a minor a Doc, PA's, NPs, PT's really need without a parent present, especially in an outpatient setting. Maybe very briefly in order to ask embarrassing health questions. I know my pediatrician growing up in the 90's-2000's would ask my parent to step out for a minute to ask those questions, but otherwise they would be present. 

The one that I do think significant 1 on 1 is necessary would be a Mental Health Professional like a Psychiatrist or a Social Worker, who needs to interview or talk to the child privately in order to get accurate information from the minor. In an inpatient pediatric hospital setting, a provider may need to spend significant 1 on 1 time with a patient providing for daily care, assuming the patients parents aren't able to stay with them at the hospital. 

Again, I'm not advocating that the BSA be the ones to draw these distinctions. They aren't qualified to make rules for other organizations and professions. But it would make sense for other professions involving minors to seriously evaluate how much 1 on 1 contact adults have with minors, and whether it's truly relevant and necessary to the performance of those jobs. 

 

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2 hours ago, Eagle1993 said:

Today’s rules make it nearly impossible to have a 18 year old ASM unless you ignore aspects of YPT outside scouting or they have no friends in scouts. 

Again, I am not saying y'all are wrong to feel frustrated over policies that lack common sense. What I am saying is that "we" (the volunteers) need to engage the volunteers' chain-of-command (*read Regional/Area commissioners by way of our council commissioners) if we have a viable solution that could make scouting better.

I whole-heartedly agree that YPT makes scouting somewhat prohibitive for young adults that aren't really kids any longer... but aren't quite adults yet either (i.e., the prefrontal cortex of the brain is not fully developed). They are in a sort of limbo area. However, the solution should not be to find a loophole or a grey area, and it certainly isn't good for the health/future of the program for young adults to just throw their hands in the air and walk away... we should be looking for ways to engage national and help come up with a better approach.

I haven't seen the data, so this is just a W.A.G., but I surmise the level of abuse by young adults in that age-group is very low. However, given the litigious nature of our current society, compounded by the deluge of statutory age classifications for what is considered "adulthood", what was BSA to do? They had to draw a cut-off line somewhere. Think about the post-WWII breakup of the middle east. The upper echelons of leadership drew arbitrary lines in the sand that didn't account for cultural, ethnolinguistic, or religious nuances... which has spawned a near century of conflict and sectarian violence. Obviously that is apples to oranges, but the fundamental axiom is there... "when higher-ups draw arbitrary lines... it causes real problems at the ground level". 

So what would be a viable solution? We have to follow the rules of the organization with which we choose to affiliate ourselves. Policies change over time, but that is because, behind the scenes, there are folks that are driving changes to the overall doctrine. My firm belief is that we have to be the change we want to see. It's clear you are very passionate about this... have you considered working with RCs/ACs to affect the changes you'd like to see?

Edited by Gilwell_1919
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20 minutes ago, Sentinel947 said:

… I'm really questioning how much 1 on 1 contact with a minor a Doc, PA's, NPs, PT's really need without a parent present, especially in an outpatient setting. Maybe very briefly in order to ask embarrassing health questions. I know my pediatrician growing up in the 90's-2000's would ask my parent to step out for a minute to ask those questions, but otherwise they would be present. 

The one that I do think significant 1 on 1 is necessary would be a Mental Health Professional like a Psychiatrist or a Social Worker, who needs to interview or talk to the child privately in order to get accurate information from the minor. In an inpatient pediatric hospital setting, a provider may need to spend significant 1 on 1 time with a patient providing for daily care, assuming the patients parents aren't able to stay with them at the hospital. 

Again, I'm not advocating that the BSA be the ones to draw these distinctions. They aren't qualified to make rules for other organizations and professions. But it would make sense for other professions involving minors to seriously evaluate how much 1 on 1 contact adults have with minors, and whether it's truly relevant and necessary to the performance of those jobs. 

 

Not just minors, but adults. Some legal departments in major health systems have been examining policies that would mandate a chaperone in every office visit involving a pelvic floor or breast exam. Practitioners are pushing back  because of two reasons: the cost to hire chaperones and the likelihood that more patients — especially those with a history of abuse — would be harmed by a second person in the room 

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14 minutes ago, Gilwell_1919 said:

So what would be a viable solution?

As mentioned before in this thread, allow 18 year old seniors to be registered as youth.   While that doesn't help 19 or 20 year olds, it addresses the biggest issue.

I would have the rule be for Scouts BSA Youth change to:

Youth can join Scouts BSA if they have completed the fifth grade and are at least 10 years old, OR have earned the Arrow of Light Award and are at least 10 years old, OR are age 11 but have not reached 18 OR have not completed 12 grade and are under 19 years.

To age into Scouts BSA:

  • Complete 5th grade and at least 10 years old
  • Earned AOL and at least 10 years old
  • OR
  • 11 years old

To age out of Scouts BSA

  • Have not completed 12th grade and under 19 years old
  • OR
  • have not reached 18 years old

So, this would allow seniors in high school to finish scouts BSA with their friends. It also puts a hard break at 19 AND allows those kids that graduate high school at 16 to continue in scouts until they are 18.

Another option is to break up Scouts BSA into younger/older youth programs, but I'm not sure that is the best decision.

We use the grade level to start Scouts BSA but not to end it.  Again, this doesn't fix everything, but it would help allow Seniors in high school to finish scouts with their friends.  Right now, they cannot.  

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11 minutes ago, Gilwell_1919 said:

I haven't seen the data, so this is just a W.A.G., but I surmise the level of abuse by young adults in that age-group is very low. …

One problem with intense litigation: … it discourages voluntary reporting. But, from what I’ve come to understand, it depends.

  • Formidable predators (let’s consider the adult serial rapist) may get their start at an early age … but avoid getting caught at the time.
  • Some (not all) homosexuals who’ve talked to me about their history became sexually active at an early age with young women or men just a couple of years older.
  • It is taken as gospel by those with a permissive sexual ethic that young people either have sex or talk about it or share images/videos about it a lot … often with someone of a different age. There is a movement that encourages that dialogue. Inevitably, in this world view, we will find conversations one participant is just over 18 and the other just under.

All of this puts young ASMs in a precarious position. What they might consider “normal” is extremely threatening to the organization. Moreover a real predator could be masquerading under the veil of innocence.

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10 minutes ago, qwazse said:

One problem with intense litigation: … it discourages voluntary reporting. But, from what I’ve come to understand, it depends.

  • Formidable predators (let’s consider the adult serial rapist) may get their start at an early age … but avoid getting caught at the time.
  • Some (not all) homosexuals who’ve talked to me about their history became sexually active at an early age with young women or men just a couple of years older.
  • It is taken as gospel by those with a permissive sexual ethic that young people either have sex or talk about it or share images/videos about it a lot … often with someone of a different age. There is a movement that encourages that dialogue. Inevitably, in this world view, we will find conversations one participant is just over 18 and the other just under.

All of this puts young ASMs in a precarious position. What they might consider “normal” is extremely threatening to the organization. Moreover a real predator could be masquerading under the veil of innocence.

Agreed and your points here may end up being the death of Scouts BSA as it stands.  18 years old isn't a light switch.  To be more safe, we may need to follow the UK model, Scouts 10.5 - 14 ... Explorers 14 - 18 and Network 18 - 25.  I think there is a bigger risk for 17 year olds hanging out with 13 year olds than 18 year olds with a 17 year old.  I wonder if in 5 - 10 years if BSA is forced to change based on insurance policies & litigation potential.

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13 minutes ago, Eagle1993 said:

Youth can join Scouts BSA if they have completed the fifth grade and are at least 10 years old, OR have earned the Arrow of Light Award and are at least 10 years old, OR are age 11 but have not reached 18 OR have not completed 12 grade and are under 19 years.

To age into Scouts BSA:

  • Complete 5th grade and at least 10 years old
  • Earned AOL and at least 10 years old
  • OR
  • 11 years old

To age out of Scouts BSA

  • Have not completed 12th grade and under 19 years old
  • OR
  • have not reached 18 years old

I think this is a viable approach and I'd certainly support something like this. My recommendation is to work with your LC SE and Council Commissioner to pitch this up to the regional/area levels to get support. Definitely not an easy walk-in-the-park, but change is never an easy task. I actively participated in the BSA Best Survey over a two-year period and was asked to help vet the new adult diversity and inclusion training. Not that I am anyone special by any means, but my council knows I am here to help. I'm not sure if you have the same type of relationship with the folks at your LC, but if you approach them with viable solutions that help make a better program... I bet they would listen. The problem is human beings tend to wear their frustrations on their sleeves, which can create unnecessary barriers or roadblocks when they are wanting to affect change in program. But, I really like this idea. I hope you get some traction with it!!

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45 minutes ago, qwazse said:

One problem with intense litigation: … it discourages voluntary reporting. But, from what I’ve come to understand, it depends.

  • Formidable predators (let’s consider the adult serial rapist) may get their start at an early age … but avoid getting caught at the time.
  • Some (not all) homosexuals who’ve talked to me about their history became sexually active at an early age with young women or men just a couple of years older.
  • It is taken as gospel by those with a permissive sexual ethic that young people either have sex or talk about it or share images/videos about it a lot … often with someone of a different age. There is a movement that encourages that dialogue. Inevitably, in this world view, we will find conversations one participant is just over 18 and the other just under.

All of this puts young ASMs in a precarious position. What they might consider “normal” is extremely threatening to the organization. Moreover a real predator could be masquerading under the veil of innocence.

Definitely some good points here. 

One of the problems I have encountered is the constant back-and-forth wherein one group says the other side is normalizing hedonistic behavior and the other group is saying the other side is cleaving to archaic principles that have little value in a modern day society. While having an open discussion is certainly worth the time... as an interim fix... I tell my scouts and parents the approach should be easy. If they focus on abstinence until adulthood, then none of the other stuff really matters. Once a young person has reached the age of 25, and has a fully developed prefrontal cortex, they can make up their own dang minds as to what is moral and what is not. My job, as a leader, is to make sure scouts have a safe environment so they can develop into strong, confident leaders with unquestionable character.

Collectively, we have open discussions about YPT with scouts and parents and we encourage them to ask questions... and to hold adult leaders accountable if they feel there is something improper (*sometimes it takes a village, right?). Like I've said before, we promote a culture of YP in our unit, so it is as normalized as any of the other safety briefs we give. I am definitely not naïve to think we can solve an endemic problem of this magnitude, but if we can focus on our spheres of influence, within our own communities, we can certainly abate the problem to the fullest extent possible. 

Again, very good points!

Edited by Gilwell_1919
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18 minutes ago, Eagle1993 said:

Agreed and your points here may end up being the death of Scouts BSA as it stands.  18 years old isn't a light switch.  To be more safe, we may need to follow the UK model, Scouts 10.5 - 14 ... Explorers 14 - 18 and Network 18 - 25.  I think there is a bigger risk for 17 year olds hanging out with 13 year olds than 18 year olds with a 17 year old.  I wonder if in 5 - 10 years if BSA is forced to change based on insurance policies & litigation potential.

I think adaptation is always a good thing for any organization. Once the dust settles, and I am really hoping BSA comes out of this on the other side, maybe national will be more open to suggestions from the boots-and-the ground folks who clearly have a passion for the ideals of scouting and offer some pretty astute solutions for how to best iron-out blanket policies that seem to be causing recalcitrance amongst the volunteer population.

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26 minutes ago, Eagle1993 said:

Agreed and your points here may end up being the death of Scouts BSA as it stands.  18 years old isn't a light switch.  To be more safe, we may need to follow the UK model, Scouts 10.5 - 14 ... Explorers 14 - 18 and Network 18 - 25.  I think there is a bigger risk for 17 year olds hanging out with 13 year olds than 18 year olds with a 17 year old.  I wonder if in 5 - 10 years if BSA is forced to change based on insurance policies & litigation potential.

This is probably where scouting will go, for insurance purposes, but it is the death of scouting as a program where youth develop character through the process of making independent decisions.

My experience is under 14 scouts aren't instinctively mature for leadership, leaving the adults to intercede when the growth stalls. Scouting is the one true program that develops maturity to confront the realities of adulthood. Now what?

Barry

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12 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

My experience is under 14 scouts aren't instinctively mature for leadership, leaving the adults to intercede when the growth stalls.

I'd have to disagree. If the younger scouts, by way of the patrol method, are being mentored and guided by the older scouts... I have seen 13-14 years with the emotional and leadership maturity of well-seasoned scouts. Kids parrot what they see. If they see older scouts that are rock-solid youth leaders... they will mimic those traits. ;) 

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9 minutes ago, Gilwell_1919 said:

I'd have to disagree. If the younger scouts, by way of the patrol method, are being mentored and guided by the older scouts... I have seen 13-14 years with the emotional and leadership maturity of well-seasoned scouts. Kids parrot what they see. If they see older scouts that are rock-solid youth leaders... they will mimic those traits. ;) 

Of course, but we are talking about taking the older mentor scouts out of the loop. prepubescent boys instinctively tend to herd for protection. Leadership forces them on the open away safety, so heavy mentoring gets them through it. But, 13 year olds are not older scouts and adults aren't good models to mimic. 

Barry

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1 hour ago, qwazse said:

All of this puts young ASMs in a precarious position. What they might consider “normal” is extremely threatening to the organization.

Absolutely right.  Up until age 18, young people are told they can do no wrong.  Then at 18, they are told they can do no right.  The world suddenly perceives them as a threat.  (or at least a liability)

Is it any wonder why so many of our 18 to 21 year-olds retreat into a culture of self-destructive behavior?  

 

Edited by David CO
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12 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

Of course, but we are talking about taking the older mentor scouts out of the loop. prepubescent boys instinctively tend to herd for protection. Leadership forces them on the open away safety, so heavy mentoring gets them through it. But, 13 year olds are not older scouts and adults aren't good models to mimic. 

Barry

Sorry, the older scouts being the 16 & 17 y/o scouts. In our troop, the scouts know it is their troop. They run it using the patrol method. I have two 17 y/o Eagle Scouts that are my troop guides. Their entire function is to help the SPL make the right leadership decisions. Each patrol also has an ASM assigned to them so there is adult guidance. But, all my ASMs know that failure is ok. It is ok for the scouts to make mistakes so they can learn from their mistakes. As for me, I mentor the Eagle Patrol since they are JASMs. I want them to mimic my servant leadership style until they can come up with their own way.... I think it helps set them on the right path towards a lifelong journey of "cheerful service"/ 

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