Child Abuse in Youth Organizations (Boy Scouts, Church, etc...)

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    Feb 20, 2012 1:47 AM GMT
    I was reading this article http://news.yahoo.com/scouts-turn-over-files-calif-sex-abuse-case-201919674.html and it got me thinking that pretty much in any circumstance where you have an organization of underage males (such as Catholic/Christian youth groups, Boy Scouts, etc.) there inevitably are a myriad of cases of child molestation and abuse. Usually when a single one is investigated that case turns up dozens or even hundreds of incidents that were never reported or not conclusively proven.

    Do you think these groups are unnecessary pedophile magnets that parents should avoid? I mean you can't generalize that EVERY scout troop will harbor a pedophile ready to molest your child, but there have just been SO MANY cases over and over and over. Youth group = sexual molestation cases.
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    Feb 20, 2012 2:09 AM GMT
    But those youth groups instill such "good" morals icon_rolleyes.gif
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    Feb 20, 2012 2:16 AM GMT
    Every human organization attracts people who want to use it for an ulterior motive. Humans are creative that way.

    So, short of locking kids in sterile rooms until they're, say 27, the sensible thing to do is make sure that kids know what's cool and what isn't. And organizations have to treat problems seriously and address them head on, not sweep them under the rug or pass the responsibility along to somebody else.

    That would have spared the Scouts, the Catholic Church, Penn State, and many kids a hell of a lot of anguish.
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    Feb 20, 2012 2:19 AM GMT
    I suppose wherever you have un(der)supervised youth, you'll have predators.
    Keeping pedophiles away from youth groups would be like keeping Augustus Gloop away from the chocolate river, unfortunately.

    I don't think the answer is to keep kids away from the youth groups or shut them down. You'll still find pedophiles in schools and church or possibly in your neighborhood.
    Parents should be smarter about their kids and what they're doing. They can't assume that pedophiles are only the weird guy with the van. Don't leave the kids alone with only one adult; there should be several adults present to keep this from happening.

    I know this is only tangentially related to the topic, but I love it anyways.
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    Feb 20, 2012 2:53 AM GMT
    Group youth activity organizations can be powerful social constructs which can create and promote sense of community, social skills, leadership skills, and other valuable life skills. Group youth activities can also help disadvantaged, disenfranchised, and "at-risk" youth to break free of the cycles of literacy, poverty, and other social ills.

    When I was doing work with underage LGBT youth, we had a strict policy which stated that no fewer than two adults needed to be present with a youth or group of youths. Even something as simple as giving a youth a ride home required two adults to transport the youth to their home. The reasoning was that with two adults present, the likelihood of inappropriate conduct (or even the allegation of inappropriate conduct) is diminished. It would take an act of collusion in order for the policy to fail.

    Administrative, technical, and physical controls and countermeasures which reduce the threat of a lone adult with one or more youths are, in my opinion, preferred to eliminating good programs.

    A transparent organizational culture founded upon an ethical code of conduct supported by awareness and training are of paramount importance.

    "Доверяй, но проверяй" - Vladimir Lenin -
    "Trust, but verify". - Ronald Reagan -
  • calibro

    Posts: 8888

    Feb 20, 2012 8:53 AM GMT
    i was in the scouts, but i never got molested.
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    Feb 20, 2012 9:06 AM GMT
    calibro saidi was in the scouts, but i never got molested.


    i was in the scouts too. As far as i recall, no molestation. But i did get lit on fire and everybody thought it was hysterical. icon_cry.gif
  • coolarmydude

    Posts: 9190

    Feb 20, 2012 9:58 AM GMT
    I just read about this on the web and I'm going to say this: This court mandate is straight up judicial activism. Now, I'm not saying this in defense of Scouting or for sexual predators, but this requirement to turn over decades of documents of reported, unsubstantiated or not, cases of sex abuse - all stemming from a single case in California that didn't even address sex abuse at-large in the Boy Scouts, is textbook judicial activism.
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    Feb 20, 2012 11:15 AM GMT
    calibro saidi was in the scouts, but i never got molested.


    I was in a Mormon youth group and they never molested me either.
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    Feb 20, 2012 12:04 PM GMT
    TrueBlueAussie said
    calibro saidi was in the scouts, but i never got molested.


    I was in a Mormon youth group and they never molested me either.


    I was an altar boy for years and never molested either. Damn! Another fast buck opportunity missed.