Updated Guide to Safe Scouting Now Available Online
All participants in official Scouting activities should become familiar with the Guide to Safe Scouting. The Guide to Safe Scouting is an overview of Scouting policies and procedures taken from several sources. For some items, the policy statements are complete. Unit leaders should review the Guide to Safe Scouting prior to conducting any activities.
In situations not specifically covered in the guide, activity planners should evaluate the risk or potential risk of harm, and respond with action plans based on community standards, the Boy Scout motto, and safety policies and practices commonly prescribed for the activity by experienced providers and practitioners.
Perhaps this quote by Sir Robert Baden-Powell from his 1914 book Quick Training for War is appropriate to include here: "... The books lay down definite principles and examples which serve to guide the leaders when applying their common sense to the situation before them. No two situations are ever precisely the same, and it is therefore impossible to lay down exact rules that should guide in every case, but a man who carries precedents and principles in his head has no difficulty in applying their teaching in supreme moments of sudden emergency ..."
The HTML and PDF versions of the Guide to Safe Scouting are now updated and available for your use on Scouting Safely. (You may view the table of contents here: www.scouting.org/scoutsource/HealthandSafety/GSS/toc.aspx.) The link includes both downloadable HTML and PDF versions of the Guide.
The updates include: additions to the Scouter Code of Conduct, Safety Afloat updates to match industry practice of helmet use for Class II and above whitewater, insurance coverage updates, and updates to the transportation section that remove exceptions for driving by youth to Scouting events.