The latest news of an assistant scoutmaster being accused of molesting scouts made my stomach lurch, yet again. Considering the thousands of people involved in scouting, I guess the number of these miscreants that show up is very low, but one is one too many. It embarrasses me every time it hits the news, and makes me feel just awful for the family that put their trust in the BSA.
With each new case that hits the wire, I find myself stopping and doing three things that are probably good things to do occasionally anyway.
- Is there any way I could get mixed up in something like this or be accused of anything like it? By following the No one-on-one interaction of the BSA and using Two-Deep Leadership all the time, there's no way anything weird will happen. I think of all the situations I've been in with scouts and look for times when I might have pushed the youth protection guidelines.
- Are all our adult volunteers acting well and following the BSA rules? I go down the list in my head and try to think if there have been any strange behaviors or opportunities to break or bend the rules. This isn't not trusting the guys I volunteer with, it is just doing a check to make sure we aren't getting slack.
- Have we covered this with the scouts recently? I check when the last time was that we covered youth protection with the troop and make sure we have it on the schedule.
Every time a BSA volunteer screws up enough to get bad press, it hurts the entire organization, including me. I hear that scouts are embarrassed to be seen in their uniforms, but not me - I kind of like being associated with an organization with a good reputation. But, when an individual does something dirty, it soils the organization's reputation and then I feel like washing my shirt real good and starting over.
I hope this is the last one for a long, long time.
Posted: 0:25 01-16-2008 295 Previous Post Next Post
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