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Two deep and driving

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When I was a Scoutmaster, I've had situations where a) the troop meeting was over and all the Scouts had gone home except for one, who was waiting for mom/dad to come get them. As I waited in the parking lot (I locked up the church), I always asked one of the other adults to stay with me (if my sons were not with me) - I didn't want to wait in a deserted parking lot with another Scout with just myself.


Now, I found it strange to go to some "official" Scouting functions in banquet halls, restaurants, etc. When using the lavatory, a Scout would walk up to the urinal next to me. Not an issue anywhere else but . . .



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Beavah - You continue to twist information. I do see it that way. CDC and BSA have pretty clear statements. Your interpretations take work to arrive at the conclusions and are done by choosing tangential points to justify violating the key statements.


When CDC says organizations should clarify, our organization has clarified. That's BSA. BSA chose the CDC recommended 1st path of no one-on-one contact. From the dark shadows of anonimity, you don't get to claim experience and authority; and, to choose an interpretation that on first sight and second sight directly contradicts the BSA policies.




Inside versus outside meetings? We wouldn't want our scouts to do that tap dance. Yet, you rely on it? Our role as a scout leader does not end when the flags are put away. You know the scouts because you are a scout leader and you have credibility with their parents because of your role as a scout leader. If you resign from BSA and not be a troop leader but keep showing up and talking with the scouts ... then your just a creepy man hanging around kids. Registering as a leader, serving as a leader and wearing the uniform creates a basis of respect and authority. Just because the flags are put away, our role as a leader does not end and expectations are not any less.


Beavah, your the one saying things are not simple enough to be answered simplistically. But then you want to justify behavior by being inside versus outside scout meetings. That's the simple excuse for violating the youth protection policies by categorizing our scouting relationships into tight clean boxes of now a scout leader and at other times not a scout leader. It doesn't work that way though.


Heck, we always tell our scouts that the Scout Oath is about how you lead your life. You don't put away the Scout Oath when outside scouting. It is the same with being a registered BSA leader. You can't put it in a tight box to be put away when not convenient. Heck, saying this is a scout event and this isn't a scout event is pretty darn simplistic and down right shaddy too. We as scouts must do better.




Using rediculous arguements about driving your grandson is a youth protection violation is mocking, rediculous and distracting noise.




Different level of experience? Perhaps. Perhaps not. I suspect your from the old school where way, way, way more was different then just no one-on-one contact. Times have changed.




I fully agree that statistically the biggest source of child abuse is family and in-home relatives. Neglect. Phyisical and psychological abuse. Probably sexual abuse too. But, few groups attrack as many abusers as youth groups like BSA. That's why a firm policy interpretation is needed, recommended by CDC and and established by BSA. Your tap dancing around scares me because it lowers the guard of others to allow behaviors that do lead to abuse.


Yeah, I've only known two SEs and they've seemed fairly okay people. I've seen issues just disappear that I hope was handled behind closed doors.




acco40 - Been in the parking lot situation mutliple times myself and used the same solution. Another adult sticks around until the parents show up. Dealt with the public bathroom situation too. No good clear solution. Just need to make the best decision you can.



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Wow, I didn't think the question would turn into an "I'm right, you're wrong, and I'm telling the teacher" type debate.


Thank you for the clarification. All of these rules didn't exist when I was a Scout.



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qwazse: Your riding the bus with your venturer is not an issue.


You really have no idea the potential for romance on Port Authority buses, do you? I bet between our Pack, Troop, and Crew, I bet I could find some well meaning scouter who would make a tempest in that teapot.


But suppose I drove into work that day. Now an issue? I think not. Giving a ride to my daughter's buddy "off the clock" trumps a lot of scouting regs.


But, in the same week, another venturer was dropped off at a meeting. Before anyone else in the crew arrived, we sat outside in view of the cubs and parents coming to their meeting. We didn't go to our meeting room until another youth and his mom arrived. And knowing she needed a ride home, I asked that family to drive her. In other words, seeing a chance to make YPT work (and get home in time to watch the Steeler game), I took advantage of it.


I would suggest that repetition is a factor here. If one adult is repeatedly seeking out one-on-one contact with youth, you have a serious problem. If the youth and adult have earned a high level of trust, and the situation is unique, you have a less of a problem. But if a "unique" situation happens often, you may need to shed some light on it.

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As far as I'm concerned, it's pretty clear that BSA meeting rules take effect once we are at the meeting. They do not control getting to the meeting.


The G2SS doesn't allow Boy Scouts to drive "for Scouting activities". So does this mean I have to tell my 16 and 17-year-old Scouts that they are not allowed to drive to a meeting? Yeah, right.


If a parent comes to me and specifically asks me if I can get her son to a meeting, I'll probably do it. I'll see what I can do to avoid any appearance of impropriety, but in the end, I will go with the overall best approach. I think I can only remember one time where I drove a kid to a meeting one-on-one.


The G2SS just can't be absolute. We were camping recently at a place with a public restroom/shower. Can I take a shower there? We didn't have separately posted shower times for adults and youth. They were individual stalls with curtains. I took a shower.


There is value in emphasizing the no one-on-one rule just so it becomes routine and people plan for it. But in the end, the rule is a tool in the program, just like our other tools.


I still vote for judgment over absolutism in rule-following.

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Amazing how the people wanting "flexible" youth protection policies are the same leaders willing to ding scouts because of minor issues during scout events or outside scouting events. I view that as hypocritical and I've seen many scouts complain about such hypocritical leaders.


Hypocritical or not, it's a power struggle. An organization that says here's the rules and leaders that say they can't live within those rules.




Oak Tree: "The G2SS doesn't allow Boy Scouts to drive "for Scouting activities". So does this mean I have to tell my 16 and 17-year-old Scouts that they are not allowed to drive to a meeting? Yeah, right."


As many have pointed out, we don't have control of how scouts and families plan to get their scouts to meetings and activities. And events / meetings do have a planned start and end. Plus it's not our place to monitor the scouts or their families outside scout events.


But the interactions with registered leaders is different. Scout leaders don't have a light switch to flip on and off to start and stop being a scout leader. You can't say your not a scout leader at 6:45pm but then become a leader at 7:00pm. You can't say that you've yet to arrive at the COR church so the leader rules don't apply to you yet. Uniform on. Uniform off. Meeting on. Meeting off. The clapper. Common on. When working with the scouts, we represent BSA and are subject to the policy. Playing such leader boundary games is not worthy of scouting and an incredibly poor example to set for our scouts.


The no one-on-one boundary needs to be firmly established to protect our scouts. Anything less just promotes the ostrich head in the sand problems of the past.




qwazse: - Your solutions are pretty much the standard I've seen. Small work arounds when youth protection policies require it. Not going into a room yet. Asking another family to drive someone home. Having another adult wait with you in a parking lot.


I fully agree also that "repetition" is a key. But there's two "repetitions" to monitor.


One dangerous repetition is one-on-one contact between specific individuals.

The other dangerous repetition is leaders that dance around the policies to do what they want anyway.


I've only been a leader for ten years with three scouting groups. In those ten years, I've easily been on 300+ nights of camping and many scout meeting / activities. I've never really seen a situation that couldn't have been solved with reasonable accomodation such as grabbing another adult, bringing my son or a small adjustment to the plans.


I'm scared for BSA if this discussion thread reflects how seriously the new youth protection policies are being followed.(This message has been edited by fred8033)

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1. Fifth grade school trip to Washington and I volunteered to be a chaperone. The four kids in my care included my son and three friends -- one wa a member of our pack and another wa in a Pack across town. School policy is for the children to be under 24-hour adult supervision which means that I slept in the hotel room with two Scout who were not my own son. There were at last four other registered BSA leaders on the trip in the same situation.


2. Weekend trip to our cabin in the country. Three dads (all Scout leaders) and four sons, all Scouts. The cabin is one room with a loft. Since it's my cabin, I get the one single bed in the loft with the four boys sleeping in the bunk beds next to me. The other dads are on the sofas downstairs. Still, it's one big room with no barriers and a shared bathroom.


3. Son's best friend and den mate spent the weekend with us while his parents were out of town. He got some sort of stomach bug and pooped himself. I helped him clean himself and put him in the shower. He spent most of the next couple hours sitting on the toilet with me checking on him from time to time.


4. Our carpool to middle school included another kid from the troop. The other parent, who commutes to work, always took the boys to school and I always picked them up. Because of the other parent's work schedule, we stick to this whether one boy is absent or not. Numerous times, when my son was out sick or after school commitments, I picked the other boy up and drove him home alone.


5. Just this summer, I passed one of my Scouts pulled over on the side of the road. He had called his father, but I stopped and offer the young man a ride. His father was very greatful he doesn't have to take off work.


Oh, yeah, (edited to add)


6. Last Friday, I'm meeting a 16y.o. Scout to review the final draft of his Eagle project proposal and sign it. When I arrive at the Scout House, his mom has already dropped him off and left to take his sister somewhere. His parents are divorced and his dad is always the one involved with the troop. I could hardly pick the mom out of a crowd and I know she's never been to any of the troop parents' meetings where we've discussed youth protection. I ask when his mom will be back and he says just a few minutes so calling her to come back won't get her there any faster and we'll be finished by the time she returns anyway. Most days we could walk down to the church office where there are plenty of other folks around, but the church staff is off early Friday afternoons. Instead of meeting in the Scout House we sit at a picnic table outside. While technically we are in a public place and visible from the street, there is no one around and we're about 100 yards from the street.



So anyone need the name of my SE to turn me in?


Clearly I'm a habitual YP violator. And I thought I was just being a good guy.(This message has been edited by Twocubdad)

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Yah, fred8033, perhaps this will help lower your blood pressure a bit, because yeh don't seem to be hearin' it all that well.


Neither I nor any of da other folks here disagree with BSA YPT or think that it is a bad idea as institutional policy. We agree with it and support it, in the same manner we would any institutional policy. We'd enforce it and follow it where it applies, we'd follow other rules where it doesn't apply, and in all cases we'd exercise caring and prudent judgment that put kids, not policies, first.


Yep, as I have said here repeatedly almost all abuse by scouters happens (or at least gets started) outside of Scouting activities. None by the way on car rides in any case that I am aware of. Mostly these things happen in da same way that Uncle Fred or Neighbor Joe or Fr. Bill or Coach Carl act as perpetrators, eh? As a friend of da child and the family, they are inside da circle of trust and engage in such behaviors with the endorsement of the parents. One need only read da Jerry Sandusky files to know that many of those kids parents encouraged 'em to go spend time with Jerry.


Da point being made here is that the answer is not to try to ensure that no adult other than a parent becomes a friend of the child or the family. No institutional policy can override da choices of the parents, and there's nuthin' at all wrong with da choice by a parent that a lad go spend extra time with a trusted teacher, or coach, or minister, or scout leader. 999 times out of a thousand, such a choice by a parent leads to a positive mentoring relationship which has great benefits for the kid. Kids need the involvement of caring adults of all stripes. As da CDC points out in words that yeh can't seem to parse, that more than anything, is what keeps kids healthy and safe.


So we're left as adults with an adult-level responsibility that must be discharged in an adult, mature manner. We have to encourage and support da involvement of lots of good people in the lives of children, while calmly and thoughtfully being alert and workin' with each other so that nobody can isolate and take advantage of a lad. Yep, I've been involved with removing scouters from da BSA permanently for things like da private cabin camping trip, one adult and several boys, non-scouting event. At the same time, I've seen lots of single-parent dads do somethin' similar with their son and some of his friends and that's been just fine. This is why these things need to be approached in a mature and thoughtful manner, mindful of signs and policies but not slavishly so.


With that in mind, fred8033, your approach would raise my antennas quite a bit, eh? It's fairly high on da "creepy" scale, as you put it, because it suggests to me da slight possibility of a repressed desire on your part. And da result of your approach is that the boys are more isolated from other adults by fred8033's strict enforcement of da policies, eh? All of which makes it more possible for fred8033 to gain trusted access and isolate vulnerable lads. Your stated behavior in fact matches other cases where I have been involved in removin' men from da BSA permanently, eh? Those were worse than the "groomers", as they had a more controlling isolation of boys which relied more on fear, in da same manner in which your arguments here rely on fear.


So I reckon we have to be, as the CDC commissioned report suggests, thoughtful about balancing concerns in a mature way. Recognizing that kindness and care for children and the involvement of lots of people in a boy's life is is overall the right approach, while maintaining some alertness to da possibility of the rare bad actor along with a willingness to intervene in such cases. Yah, yah, and some institutional policies to help protect da institution from exposure. ;)




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Not quite sure how to put it other than this.


My son and his best friend met in Tiger Cubs.


We have become best friends with his parents.


God forbid, if anything happens to either of us as couples, the other couple will assume custody and raise the late couples son as their own.


We love them and their son, and the best thing Scouting has done for my life is bring these two families together.


If I am wrong in giving this child a ride, I am quiting Scouting and the six of us will have fun camping. I love it, but I really don't need it that much.

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