Youth Protection Training
The Boy Scouts of America places the greatest importance on creating the most secure environment possible for our youth members. To maintain such an environment, the BSA developed numerous procedural and leadership selection policies and provides parents and leaders with resources for the Cub Scout, Boy Scout, and Venturing programs. Furthermore, a Scouter Code of Conduct (found here) has been approved by the Boy Scouts of America to provide a resource that clearly defines the desired behavior for adults involved in Scouting.
The values of Scouting make it clear that bullying cannot be tolerated. Scouting leaders have a unique opportunity to teach respect and acceptance of others. Learn about Creating a Bullying-Free Culture in Scouting here; click here to download a Tip Sheet of what to do when bullying happens; and visit Scouting.org to learn about supplemental training.
Youth Protection Reporting Procedures for Volunteers
There are two types of Youth Protection–related reporting procedures all volunteers must follow:
- When you witness or suspect any child has been abused or neglected—See "Mandatory Report of Child Abuse" below.
- When you witness a violation of the BSA's Youth Protection policies—See "Reporting Violations of BSA Youth Protection Policies" below.
Mandatory Report of Child Abuse
All persons involved in Scouting shall report to local authorities any good-faith suspicion or belief that any child is or has been physically or sexually abused, physically or emotionally neglected, exposed to any form of violence or threat, exposed to any form of sexual exploitation, enticement, or showing of obscene material. You may not abdicate this reporting responsibility to any other person. To learn more about mandatory reporting, click here.
Steps to Reporting Child Abuse
- Ensure the child is in a safe environment.
- In cases of child abuse or medical emergencies, call 911 immediately. In addition, if the suspected abuse is in the Scout's home or family, you are required to contact the local child abuse hotline.
- Notify the Scout executive or his/her designee.
In the event of an emergency, Dial 9-1-1
Iowa Child Abuse Hotline
Iowa Department of Human Services
What is Child Abuse in the State of Iowa?
Mid Iowa Council Emergency Contact Personnel
Why Scouting Staff must be called first:
- They may be aware of other confidential information that must be taken into account.
- It is possible that action must be taken by the BSA, even if no action will be taken by law enforcement.
- If the media or other officials contact BSA leadership, we must be prepared to respond with competency.
- The Scout Executive is experienced in such issues, and is legally obligated to notify authorities when appropriate.
More Information about the BSA’s Youth Protection Policies:
Iowa Law on Mandatory Reporting:
To Access Youth Protection Information at Scouting.org, click here.
To Download Mid-Iowa Council's Document on Youth Protection, click here.
Youth Protection Mission Statement
True youth protection can be achieved only through the focused commitment of everyone in Scouting. It is the mission of Youth Protection volunteers and professionals to work within the Boy Scouts of America to maintain a culture of Youth Protection awareness and safety at the national, regional, area, council, district, and unit levels.