Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  

Possible Youth Protection Problem?

Recommended Posts

On the face of it, it seems to be a violation. You're concerned (rightly) about this - now the question is "what now?".


You can do as The Blancmange said and report it to the Scout Executive. Of course, this means the Unit will probably need a new Scoutmaster.


You can do what some others have suggested and just not sweat it.


Or you could have a nice, friendly conversation with the Scoutmaster and the Committee Chair to make sure you understand the operations and expectations of the Unit.


Could the SM's son been sleeping in the back of the car and you just didn't see him?


Could the SM, being followed by another car, have dropped a Scout off at home on the way in?


Could there be another perfectly reasonable explanation?


I think I'd have that friendly, non-accusatorial conversation to make sure my comfort level and the top leader's comfort levels meshed.



Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Calico - Having never formally reported a YP violation to the council, I don't know for sure how the process would work on that end. Do you think that if, hypothetically, the SE were notified of this situation, and given only the same objective information that has been posted here so far, would he/she remove that SM?


I'm asking because I honestly don't know. I would imagine that the SE might opt to just keep an eye on the situation, or have a private chat with the SM to re-inforce the policy. But are you saying that the official policy would be to just remove the SM?

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Let me throw another wrench into the geras here:


I am the CubMaster of our pack. My son (obviously) and my nephew are both scouts in the pack.


As it happens to just so be, My son had an achy back and throat yesterday, that was diagnosed as Strep throat and the start of pnuemonia by the Dr this morning.


Now, because his dad gets home late often, I end up taking my nephew to den and pack meetings. The dad shows up a little latter and my nephew goes home with him.


So if my nephew needs a ride tonight, and since my son WILL NOT be going...am I violating YP?


You bet I am because the "son home sick but nephew still going" provision was left out.


Yeah, not my child, but is family. Not immediate family, but related.


Suppose it was the son of a single mom or dad who worked the night shift and lived next door?

Maybe I have known them for 18 years and the boy all his life?

I have only been the CM for a year, and a scouter for 3.


But I have been an uncle to my nephew all his life.


Again, am I violating YP ?


Technically I am. Realistically, I am not . Morally, I am actually being a good citizen and living up to the scout law by being:


Loyal- Helping a neighbor/ family

Helpful - see above

Friendly - It's what friends do for each other

Courteous - If I was asked, it's nicer than saying no

Kind - Do I need to explain

Thrifty - Mom or dad doesn't have to pay a baby sitter or somebody to take Jr to scouting because

because they are at work.


Trustworthy? I don't know...you tell me. According to YP, no. According to my neighbor and other parts of scout law...then yes, I am.



If the parents are okay with it ANd within view of the SM, I'd say that is the over riding authority. At least in following CS ( that would be common sense). :)

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

OGE has it right.


You do not take YP issues lightly. If it's minor, your SE will almost have a "and you bothered calling me why now?" tone when you let him know, but at least you've followed the protocol in place to protect boys.


The most trustworthy of men in the most innocent of circumstances can commit the most atrocious of evils. It's better to have there be no question rather than a 90% sure there's no problem.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

First read this, I know its over a year old, but still


http://www.neagle.com/news/education/x1672001550/Gregory-Ritter-a-Teacher-Charged-with-Molesting-a-14-year-old-Boy-Found-Dead t


That guy, the one who killed himself was my son's 7th grade teacher. He was a Venturing Crew Advisor and Camp School Instructor. He was a Disney Teacher of the Year in 2000 and universally loved by his students. The school he taught at is in the area the troop draws from, more than half the scouts had him as a teacher


Many kids today are teachers because of his influence. When I moved into the area he was established as a well respected Scout leader. I didnt know him that well and noticed he played fast and loose with Youth Protectin guidelines, and when I asked others about it, I was told that was just him, everybody trusted him, I was not to worry. I never did trust him but I believed others. I asked him about his perchant to not follow rules and he said what he did was for the kids and he said he would never hurt them


I might have prevented what happended but I didnt because I was told he was "OK" even when I knew he flouted rules.


I was the unit commissioner for his Venturing Crew


Youth protection is not a sometimes thing

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I hate to say it, but YP is not only for the Scout's protection, but also for the leaders' as well. I know a case where a very highly regarded leader was accussed of making advances to a "scout" who did have a history of lying to stay out of trouble. I know that "scout's" history first hand b/c he lied about me and two others, saying we had given him permission to stay out late when we did not, so that he wouldn't get into any trouble.


His story was that she made a pass at him after shee took her shower. Her story is that she saw the scout running around after hours on her way back from the showers, tried to correct him, and he took off, later to accuse her of making a pass.


Can you guess who was removed from scouting b/c of the accusation.


follow the policies.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, it looks like the OP has left the building.


I do want to respond to Beavah's statement, however:


"Predators really start outside of scouting, eh? Become friends with da family, see the boys when no other scouting adults are around. Adult-on-youth molestation by anyone other than a parent or relative rarely happens on scouting events, and then only when the person has been doin' it outside of scouting for a while."


Not all predators follow this pattern. Beavah's generalization shouldn't keep anyone from reporting a YP violation. And not all abuse is sexual - there's emotional and physical, as well. Both can happen during a long 1-on-1 car ride.


There is no excuse for a trained Scout leader to violate this basic principle of youth contact - none whatsoever. Just have another Scout ride with you. It's so simple I'm amazed it has to be said. I'm sympathetic to the nephew/friend of the family arguments that have been brought up here, but remember: It's to protect you as well as the Scouts.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

The story that OGE posts is terrible. May that never happen to any of our units.


But still, as a result of that, am I going to call the SE to report that Scoutfish is violating youth protection guidelines by driving his nephew to the meeting? I'm still going to come down on the side of good judgment here.


The story said "the boy visited Ritter at his former home in Palmyra Township, Pike County, and slept over Ritters house on several occasions." As Beavah says, that's where the abuse usually takes place. I'm not sure I'd say that this leader is playing fast and loose with the rules, the way Ritter was.


Sure, have a friendly conversation with the Scoutmaster. See what he says. I'd be curious to hear what the SE would say if you called him...I cannot imagine that a Scoutmaster would be removed based on this isolated incident. Even if it happened again in a few months. Personally I can't imagine calling the SE based on this, but hey, have at it. If the Scoutmaster was taking a Scout into his tent, that's a different situation.


Runintherain, those comments about extreme positions aren't really directed at you - your question is a reasonable one. It's more directed at some of the other respondents, in the way of the forum. Primary rule to remember, once you post, you have to let go of the conversation as it will go all over the place.



Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

No one said that life was easy.

runintherain you must do what you think is right.

You post:

" I still believe that to be against the rules of youth protection. Is that the case?"

The answer is yes it is.

If you feel that you must follow the policy?

Then that's fine and dandy.

But it kinda sounds to me like you know that this happened because it happened and maybe other than the SM being foolish, it's not really a big deal.

You might decide to have a word with the Troop Committee and have them deal with it.


If you don't trust the SM?

I know if my son were in a Troop where I even slightly suspected that the adults were molesting or harming kids.

My kid would be gone ASAP.


When it comes down to doing what we think is right?

That's why they pay us big boy wages!

We have to make up our own mind.





Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Oak Tree -


Playing fast and loose with YP guidelines may not indicate abuse in scouting scenarios, but it definitely is a characteristic of an abuser.


It's like dropping a frog in a pot of boiling water, he'll jump out.

But put the frog in cold water and slowly heat it to a boil and he'll remain in until his demise.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree that playing fast and loose with the rules can be one of many indicators you should pay attention to. I didn't mean to imply that you should ignore someone who does that.


What I was trying to say was, I don't think that one incident like this is equivalent to "playing fast and loose with the rules." OGE could give us more examples of what he meant, but I'm guessing it was more than one time, it was more serious incidents, and the leader was clearly intentionally doing it.


Even the unusual situations become easier to avoid if it becomes part of the unit's culture. Other parents know that they can't take the next-to-last kid and leave the Scoutmaster alone with one. There are various subtle things that happen when everyone is naturally looking to prevent the situation.


That said, there are still going to be times when you might have to use your judgment. There is not, for example, a rule against leaving a Scout alone at the church when all the leaders leave. So if the next-to-last kid has to leave with his parents, one thing you could do would just be to leave as well. That may not be the most prudent step. Different rules and principles and risks are always in play at different levels, and you have to use your judgment on how to balance them.


In the nephew case, Scoutfish could just say his nephew can't come. But that would interfere with one of his principles that he wants to provide fun opportunities for his nephew and see him consistently going to Scout meetings.


I don't know what principle was at work in the Scoutmaster's mind on this trip. He may not have even thought about it. He may just apologize. He may say that he has the parent's agreement. Who knows?


In this case, the appearance is bad, too. I've never had any reason to think of doing this on a group trip somewhere. Don't do it if you can avoid it, but use judgment with the rules and with getting people to follow the rules.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites


He may say that he has the parent's agreement. Who knows?

Does that matter?


It's like dropping a frog in a pot of boiling water, he'll jump out. But put the frog in cold water and slowly heat it to a boil and he'll remain in until his demise.

How & why do you know this? :-)

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
Sign in to follow this