Re: Curiosity between GSUSA and BSA
Rick & Gail Branum (branum@AONE.COM)
Mon, 30 Sep 1996 09:27:01 -0700
>Date: Fri, 27 Sep 1996 10:47:31 -0600
Jason Cruse writes:
>I'm more curious about the prevalence of these sorts of things in other
>areas. I personally haven't seen it. My wife hasn't seen it. The other
>women in BSA that I know (from Wood Badge or Adult Leader Basic) didn't
>volunteer any knowledge on this.
OK, now my .02 cents worth. All I can recount is my experiences in Girl
Scouting. You will need to draw your own conclusions as to whether or not
abuse is more prevalent amongst GSUSA or BSA, or whether we women are more
"sensitive" to these situations. All I can give you is what has happened to me.
first troop...military community, grades 4-6, no known abuse amongst any.
Possible neglect of one girl from a family of 9 kids, but even that is not
2nd troop...suburban, middle class community, Junior High age girls, one
girl with possible bulimia...parents going through nasty divorce
3rd and 4th troops...rural community, lower incomes, grades 4-7, one parent
never able to pick up child, another parent offering marijuana to me when I
came to visit the home, a third family absconding with the profits of cookie
5th troop...suburban, middle class community, grades 1-3, no apparent problems
6th troop...suburban, middle class community, Junior high age, no apparent
7th troop...suburban, upper-middle class, grades 4-6, no apparent problems
8th troop...suburban, lower to middle class, grades K-6 (over several
years), one girl physically abused and removed from parent's home, one girl
"forgotten" repeatedly, one girl physically abused and a perpetual
runaway...also hygiene severely lacking, another girl with cigarette burn
marks all over her arms and legs and a constant source of problems in the troop.
9th troop...suburban, middle class, junior high age (over several years),
one girl a perpetual runaway and in multiple foster homes for various reasons.
You can draw your own conclusions from these, or add them to other
data and perhaps get a better overall view, but IMHO there still isn't
enough facts to make a logical conclusion. One of these troops had only 4
girls while another had 40+ girls. I can say I noticed a little more
problems with troops with children from lower incomes, but I think that
proportionately there are no more problems with girls than with boys in the
department of abuse or neglect. It seems that the families with higher
incomes either can hide the problem(s) better or there isn't as much stress
in the families which brings out abuse and neglect.
Every troop I have been affiliated with has had problems of some
sort. I think that's the nature of humanity. It's how we, as adults, deal
with these problems that may make them seem big or diminish them in our own
eyes to trivial everyday problems encountered with the diversity of humanity.
Just my soapbox stand,
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City