While BSA continuously evaluates and strengthens its Youth Protection programs, the organization recognizes that abuse can happen anywhere, even in Scouting. BSA’s safeguards include the following:
• All volunteers must complete a rigorous application and screening process before joining Scouting. As part of this requirement, applicants must provide references and submit to a national criminal background check. BSA also verifies that the organization has not received any prior allegations of misconduct on the volunteer’s part by checking names in the Ineligible Volunteer Files. BSA’s goal is to ensure that all adult volunteers represent the values and character outlined in the Scout Oath and Scout Law and are good leaders for youth.
• All volunteers are required to complete Youth Protection Training and must renew the training every two years. This training is accessible to the general public online at www.Scouting.org, under the Youth Protection tab. Please review the training, as it provides important information about detecting and preventing abuse, no matter where it may occur.
• Scouting’s two-deep leadership policy requires at least two adults to be present for all Scouting activities. No youth should ever be alone with a Scout leader for any reason.
• Every Boy Scout and Cub Scout handbook includes a pamphlet to help parents teach their children how to recognize, resist and report abuse. If you have not done so already, please immediately review and discuss this information with your unit leaders and encourage them to bring it to the attention of all Scout parents. A copy of the pamphlet and other youth-oriented literature is available under the Youth Protection tab on the BSA website.
• All Scouting activities are open to parents and BSA encourages families to enjoy Scouting together.
• BSA has a mandatory reporting policy, which means all persons involved in Scouting shall report to local authorities any good faith suspicion or belief that any child is or has been physically or sexually abused, physically or emotionally neglected, exposed to any form of violence or threat, exposed to any form of sexual exploitation including the possession, manufacture, or distribution of child pornography, online solicitation, enticement, or showing of obscene material. No person may abdicate this reporting responsibility to any other person.
Notify Scout Executive Les Baron of this report, or of any violation of BSA’s Youth Protection policies, so he may take appropriate action for the safety of our Scouts, make appropriate notifications, and follow-up with investigating agencies.
Click HERE to report abuse.
- BSA’s Youth Protection policies and procedures can be accessed by visiting www.BSAYouthProtection.org.
- Click here to download a poster of BSA's Youth Protection procedures.
- Click here to download the Youth Protection Chapter in Guide to Safe Scouting.
- Click here for information about The National Youth Protection Symposium, which took place in Atlanta on November 1-2, 2012.