Right now, an appeals court in Ventura is weighing the release of more documents from the Boy Scouts so-called ‘perversion files.’
Even as the Scouts fight that release, members are defending how the group’s fought to train abuse out of the system altogether.
Online training videos are one way the boy scouts of America is working to make sure there’s no expansion of the ‘perversion files.’
Records on accused sexual abusers that once lived in 15 locked cabinets in Texas are now public.
“Scouts is very close to me. Any time people think poorly of the Scouts, that’s disappointing to me,” said Alex Hayes, a certified resident scout camp director who’s been involved with the organization form 16 years.
The youth protection trainer dropped out of the region’s Golden Empire council after petitioning it to rehire a gay fellow staffer.
And though he disagrees with some Scout stances, Hayes says the current focus on child safety is spot on.
Videos on the Scouts website detail the preventative policy measures.
They include ensuring at least two adults are present at all activities, allowing parents to observe all scouting activities and creation of a mandate that all suspicions of abuse be reported to the proper local authorities and scouting leadership.
“It’s a really high priority for anyone I’ve ever worked with,” said Hayes.
What impact does he think the document release and the resulting scandal will have?
“It’s gonna help the Boy Scouts reaffirm their position dealing with child abuse and make it a better organization,” said Hayes.
Online training videos and good intentions – not enough for lawyers who say their clients suffered needlessly because the BSA wasn’t loyal to the kids who pledged to be loyal scouts.
For its part, the Boy Scouts just started requiring criminal background checks for all volunteers four years ago.
The group is now planning a youth protection symposium next month in Atlanta.