Dear Scout Families,
By now you have probably heard about the national organization of the Boy Scouts of America filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and the reasons behind the decision. I would like to take a moment to provide you with some additional information. As you most certainly have questions as to how this will impact the two units (Pack 1385 and Troop 138) at St. Francis. I want you to know the following:
• The scouting programs for both the Cub Scout Pack and the Boy Scout Troop at St. Francis of Assisi Parish will continue.
• All District and Council meetings, activities, events, and service projects will take place as usual
• The bankruptcy (Chapter 11 reorganization) does NOT affect our Pack or Troop
• The bankruptcy is at a National level in order to restructure and create a Trust to handle litigation, compensation, counseling, etc. for allegations that took place more than 30 years ago. It is NOT the result of a rash of present-day abuse.
• Our Local Council, known as the National Capital Area Council (NCAC) is legally separate, distinct, and financially independent from the National Organization.
• Our Local Council (NCAC) has NOT filed for bankruptcy protection and we are not a part of the National restructuring that National will be going through.
• Scouting is safer than ever before. BSA has been on the forefront of advocacy of youth protection policies for its members and leaders more stringently than nearly any other youth organization in the country.
• Here at St. Francis, there is an additional level of protection required of all volunteers – above and beyond those required by BSA – who have substantial contact with youth. All volunteers must be Compliant. There are three components to being Compliant:
o VIRTUS – A four hour or less live training session on child sexual abuse
o Background Check – This is an extensive bilateral (both federal and state) background check.
o Cleared – Meaning one must be cleared of the background check before having substantial contact with youth here at St. Francis.
Background Check renewals are also conducted on a regular basis. There is also continuous video surveillance on the church and school campus.
It is my job as Compliance Office for the Parish and the Charter Organization Representative for our BSA Scouting programs to see to it that these policies (for any type of abuse – NOT just child sexual abuse) are enforced.
Scouting has been a very positive program for our youth within St. Francis mission of developing Christian values among our youth in their mission of spreading God’s love and service to our fellow man and we pray for it to continue to grow here. Despite the news, the reputation and future growth of the Scouting program at St. Francis depends more on word of mouth from you, its members, than from the media. In addition to know that your children are protected in the BSA Scouting program, I wanted to inform you through this letter and give you greater confidence in being able to justify your decision to continue to participate in the program as well as advocate other members of the parish to participate in the program despite the media distortions.
St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church
Compliance Officer (Child/Adult Protection)
Chartered Organization Representative, Cub Scout Pack 1385 & Boy Scout Troop 138