Re: Dismissing a Leader
Randy Thacker (WRThacker@AOL.COM)
Fri, 3 Oct 1997 11:55:05 -0400
Though no expert my background is in biology and the medical field (EMS). My
1. Educate the parents and boys about blood borne pathogens. Just because
the leader is HIV pos doesn't mean he is a risk to the boys from that.
2. Limit his involvement, if the doctor says no camping and similiar outdoor
activities, then he should not go. You would be following the recommendations
of a medical professional. As long as you follow the same procedures in
other situations then you should be OK.
3. Consult with your local health department or a doctor about the standards
the leader should follow to protect the boys. Your first aid kits should
have gloves and rescutation masks and the boys should know to use them. The
primary risk from this leader cutting himself is his bleeding to death
(hemophillia) not transmitting the HIV virus. One you have the facts about
what the leader should do, tell him and require that he follow them. If he
does not then dismiss him.
4. The parents will sue for anything so the key is that you follow sound
medical advice and common sense instead of irrational fear. While you can't
stop a lawsuit, you may be able to consult with the Council legal counsel or
a private attorney to make sure you are fair to the boys and the leader.
This will make your case stronger should you have to dismiss him.
5. A leader that doesn't take prudent, rational precautions to protect
others does not follow the scout oath and law and doesn't need to be a scout
leader. Stand on that principle, armed with facts but expect to be labeled
as intolerant, fear mongers.
6. Talk to the leader and think ahead. If and when his HIV status changes
to AIDS his participation will change and he may have to stop for health
reasons such as pneumonia, TB and other infections that develop due to a
compromised immune system.
Troop 173, Carlisle, PA
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City