Scouts-L Mail Archive for December of 1999: Re: YP--a hypothetical
Re: YP--a hypothetical
Fri, 10 Dec 1999 07:55:43 -0800
At 9:44 -0500 on 12/10/99, steve spake about Re: YP--a hypothetical thus:
>I believe that the intent of the BSA Youth Protection is to provide
>two deep leadership at all activities where youth are involved,
>however the actual written policy doesn't specifically state
>meetings but just trips and outings!
> I contend that its intent is that you must.
While your contention could be BSA policy, and there may be reasons
why it should be BSA policy, it is not BSA policy. You are lifting
yourself with your boot laces.
If the BSA wishes to require two adults at all activities, without
exception, it perfectly well knows how to say so; and it did not say
so. The rule does not require two adults at the regular meeting
place, and there is no basis to believe that it says so. To presume
an intent that is not stated, and then use that intent to argue that
the rule does not mean what it says, is to assume your conclusion.
One reason for the two-deep leadership rule is concern for having a
witness in the event of litigation, and also some degree of trust
that if there is more than one adult present, there is apt to be a
deterrent against wrongful adult behavior. Bad situations that figure
in past litigation involve one on one conduct. Parents are the usual
plaintiffs, but parents are usually familiar with the conditions at
the usual meeting place and somewhat disabled from complaining about
it. Such bad conduct rarely occurred, if ever, in the setting of the
full group meeting all together. Child abuse can be, but is not
normally, a group activity.
I do, however, agree that there are good, practical reasons to have
two deep leadership, and the original poster's concern is not
misplaced. For example, if a boy should happen to cut his finger on a
piece of paper, the one leader cannot be looking for a band-aid in
the church office, let's say, and keep an eye on the boys at the same
time. The hypothetical situation could leave the leader with a need
to be in two places at once. On the other hand, going to the phone to
attempt to call all the parents back to pick up their kids is apt to
be fruitless (as who says the parents were going home) and also
presents the need to be two places at once. Either a second adult or
a good Den Chief can alleviate the two places at once problem.
In the hypothetical case I would suggest that the Leader try to get
the parents to agree that one parent will stay for each meeting. This
would impact each family about once a month to once every two months.
The great majority of Scout units survived quite nicely without a two
adult rule for seventy years or so, though.
Asst Scoutmaster, District Committee, District Commissioner,
Lewis-Clark Trail District, Inland Northwest Council 611, &
'a good ol' Fox too'; Es Kaielgu Lodge 311, Tseminicum Chapter,
Vigil, mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org ; and Macintosh fan.
Take a look at http://www.consultburton.com/scouter.html