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Youth Protection Guidelines

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Scouting is a youth service organization and our first job must be to protect our youth members from injury and abuse. Scouting must be a safe and secure environment for everyone. All leaders, all members of units committees, indeed anyone who works with young people need to know the facts and responsibilities of youth protection.

Youth Protection Training is a requirement for Quality Unit Awards. Youth Protection Training is required for all adults (over 18) participating in any National event with youth - National and World Jamborees, Philmont, Florida Sea Base, Northern Tier High Adventure base, etc. Youth Protection Training is required for all adults (over 18) participating in any "out of council" event or trip with youth.

Youth Protection is Everyone's Responsibility
Youth protection training is conducted several times a year throughout the council and in a self paced on-line version.

Our highest priority is the safety and well-being of our youth members and participants. To help protect our young people, we are pleased to offer youth protection training online. This training is one part of a comprehensive youth protection training program that formally began in 1988. It is designed to help prevent child abuse in all of its forms—whether verbal, emotional, physical, or sexual abuse, or neglect.

We are proud to offer this training free of charge to all parents, teachers, coaches, social workers, and youth development leaders. This training comes in an easy-to-use format and will require about an hour to complete, and it could be invaluable to you and the youth in your life.

Because requirements for reporting suspected incidents of child abuse vary from community to community, this online training is only delivered through the Web sites of local BSA offices.

Thank you for utilizing this important training.

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Youth Protection Policies of the BSA

The BSA has adopted the following policies to provide additional security for our members. These policies are primarily for the protection of our youth members; however, they also serve to protect our adult leaders from false accusations of abuse.

TWO-DEEP LEADERSHIP: Two registered adult leaders or one registered leader and a parent of a participant, one of whom must be 21 years of age or older, are required on all trips and outings. The chartered organization is responsible for ensuring that sufficient leadership is provided for all activities.
 
NO ONE-ON-ONE CONTACT: One-on-one contact between adults and youth members is not permitted. In situations that require personal conferences, such as Scoutmaster's conference, the meeting is to be conducted in view of other adults and youths.
 
RESPECT OF PRIVACY: Adult leaders must respect the privacy of youth members in situations such as changing clothes and taking showers at camp, and intrude only to the extent that health and safety require. Adults must protect their own privacy in similar situations.
 
SEPARATE ACCOMMODATIONS: When camping, no youth is permitted to sleep in the tent of an adult other than his own parent or guardian. Councils are strongly encouraged to have separate shower and latrine facilities for females. When separate facilities are not available, separate times for male and female use should be scheduled and posted for showers.
 
PROPER PREPARATION FOR HIGH-ADVENTURE ACTIVITIES: Activities with elements of risk should never be undertaken without proper preparation, equipment, clothing, supervision, and safety measures.
 
NO SECRET ORGANIZATIONS: The Boy Scouts of America does not recognize any secret organizations as part of its program. All aspects of the Scouting program are open to observation by parents and leaders.
 
APPROPRIATE ATTIRE: Proper clothing for activities is required. For example, skinny-dipping is not appropriate as part of Scouting.
 
CONSTRUCTIVE DISCIPLINE: Discipline used in Scouting should be constructive and reflect Scouting's values. Corporal punishment is never permitted.
 
HAZING PROHIBITED: Physical hazing and initiations are prohibited and may not be included as part of any Scouting activity.
 
JUNIOR LEADER TRAINING & SUPERVISION: Adult leaders must monitor and guide the leadership techniques used by junior leaders and ensure that BSA policies are followed.

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Youth - BSA Traditional Programs
 
Cub Scout Meeting Guide:
It Happened to Me
 
 
 
Boy Scout Meeting Guide:
A Time to Tell
 

 
Venture Meeting Guide:
Personal Safety Awareness
 
 

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Adults - BSA Traditional Programs
 
Youth Protection Guidelines:
Training for Volunteer Leaders and Parents
 
 
Youth Protection:
Frequently Asked Questions
 
 
Venturing Leader Guide
 

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Parents' Guides
 
Cub Scout:
Parents' Guide  
 
 
 
Boy Scout:
Parents' Guide 
 
 

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Boys' Life Magazine
 

"Protect Yourself from Child Abuse"

English

Spanish

"Confronting Child Abuse"

English

Spanish

"Danger in Cyberspace"

English

Spanish

"Net-ting a Profit: Kid Businessmen Make Money a New Way: Online"
and
"Safety in Cyberspace"

English

Spanish

"Stay Right Online"

English

Spanish

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Scouting Magazine
 

"Child Abuse: Let's Talk About It"

English

"It Shouldn't Hurt to be a Child"

English

"Youth Protection Training News Briefs"

English

"Working Together to Protect Our Children"

English

"Assuring Emotional Security for Children"

English

"Words Can Hurt"

English

"Using the Internet Safely"

English

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Child Protective Services
Illinois - (800) 252 - 2873

Child Help USA
National Child Abuse Hotline
(800) 4 - A - CHILD

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