scouts-l Mail Archive for June of 2000: Re: Insurance and Liability Experiences
MAJ) Mike Walton (settummanque, the blackeagle (blkeagle@USSCOUTS.ORG
Mon Jun 05 2000 - 23:29:24 CDT
Bob Lazell wrote and asked:
>Now here is the way possible misinformation gets spread both here on the
>list and in Scouting. Someone (with all good intention I'm sure) makes a
>statement like the following:
>>>BSA says they're insurance won't cover your incident if you did not file
>>>one of these permit applications...
>Well, who is this "BSA" who "said" this!
Let's see...in this case:
For starters, there was a memorandum sent to the field from the BSA's Risk
Management Division in 1996. This memorandum, among other things, outlined
how local Councils should implement the "new versions of the Local and
National Tour Permits", to include emphasizing that local Councils "should
not assume liability for a Scouting activity unless such activity was
recorded and filed in advance using the appropriate tour permit".
Local Councils took that memorandum and "ran with it," Bob....some Councils
in 1997 and 98 started mandating that ANY SCOUTING ACTIVITY (meetings,
programs, activities, even summer camps) MUST BE FILED USING THE NEW
VERSION OF THE TOUR PERMIT.
Overkill, yes. But those Councils merely read something and in their
implementation, kinda went a *little overboard* with it.
In 1999, a newer (the CURRENT) version of the BSA's Local Tour Permit was
created and sent to the field, with similar implementation instructions.
All previous versions of the Local Tour Permit were to be destroyed and
while it is up to the Council to determine how the Local Tour Permit was to
be used, Councils should caution units that their failure to file such a
document before the event or activity starts COULD BE GROUNDS for denial of
any claims in connection with the Scouting event or activity, since part of
the claim is based upon the "leader in charge" promptly and properly
filling out documents associated with the event in question.
To *me*, Bob, that sounds a lot like "you have to use the Local Tour Permit
or you won't be covered". I'm not a lawyer, don't play one on TV or on the
radio. But there's enough anecdotal information which states that you've
better file one before you go.
Additionally, I do believe that the CURRENT edition of the Guide to Safe
Scouting also mentions about liability and the fact that "the person in
charge must have filed the appropriate paperwork with the local Council" or
something like that (I don't have my copy of the G2SS handy right
now....and I won't be able to get to the BSA's site until tomorrow, so if
someone else can provide an appropriate pointer, I would be very
Finally, MANY LOCAL COUNCILS have informed their volunteers back in August
or September (and is has been posted here on Scouts-L as a question, as in
"my council is requiring us to have tour permits or we won't be covered by
the insurance. Is your council doing the same thing, or is our council
just being wacked out??") that indeed, in order to receive the maximum
benefit of the BSA's protection in the area of Risk Management, that the
tour leader must have filed with the Council a Local Tour Permit and must
carry in their possession the bottom, stamped part of the Permit, during
the event or activity.
That's where this is coming from, Bob. If your Council is NOT doing these
kinds of things, consider yourselves extremely lucky.
Your Council receives a lot of information every month in the form of a
package of information that your professional staff is supposed to be
sharing with you and other volunteers. Many Councils do a pretty decent
job of sharing this kind of information, and other Councils do so only
after a careful review of the information by the Council Scout Executive
(and in some Councils, by the President and Commissioner) to determine 1)
if we're going to carry this program or thing out in our council and if so,
when and 2) how are we going to tell our volunteers about this and in which
Despite ANYTHING you read here, especially dealing with Risk Management, a
simple phone call, fax (or if your Council is fortunate enough, email) to
*your Council* will resolve the issue for *your Council and your unit*.
(MAJ) Mike L. Walton (settummanque, the blackeagle)
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