The Boy Scouts of America Files for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy to Equitably Compensate Victims While Ensuring Scouting Continues Across the Country
Local Councils, including the Aloha Council, are Not Filing for Bankruptcy as They are Legally Separate and Distinct Organizations
IRVING, TX – February 18, 2020 – The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) today announced that the national organization has filed for bankruptcy under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code to achieve two key objectives: equitably compensate victims who were harmed during their time in Scouting and continue carrying out its mission for years to come. The BSA intends to use the Chapter 11 process to create a Victims Compensation Trust that would provide equitable compensation to victims.
Scouting programs, including unit meetings and activities, council events, other Scouting adventures and countless service projects, will continue throughout this process and for many years to come. The BSA fully intends to maintain its commitments to its members, families, volunteer leaders, employees, retirees, donors and alumni to the fullest extent permitted by bankruptcy laws. The organization also will pay its vendors and partners for all goods and services delivered from today forward.
Local councils, which provide programming, financial, facility and administrative support to Scouting units in their communities, have not filed for bankruptcy. They are legally separate, distinct and financially independent from the national organization.
“The BSA cares deeply about all victims of abuse and sincerely apologizes to anyone who was harmed during their time in Scouting. We are outraged that there have been times when individuals took advantage of our programs to harm innocent children,” said Roger Mosby, President and Chief Executive Officer. “While we know nothing can undo the tragic abuse that victims suffered, we believe the Chapter 11 process – with the proposed Trust structure – will provide equitable compensation to all victims while maintaining the BSA’s important mission.”
Establishment of the Victims Compensation Trust and Support for Victims of Abuse
The BSA has an important duty to keep children safe, supported and protected while preparing them for their futures, and the organization has every intention of continuing to fulfill these important responsibilities.
Tragically, there have been times when individuals took advantage of the BSA’s programs to harm children. The BSA firmly believes that a proposed Victims Compensation Trust structure is the best means of compensating victims in a way that is equitable and protects their identities. The BSA encourages victims to come forward to file a claim as the bankruptcy process moves forward and will provide clear and comprehensive notices about how to do so.
The BSA has, for years, funded in-person counseling for any current or former Scout who was a victim of abuse as well as victims’ family members, by a provider of their choice. As an extension of this commitment to supporting victims, the BSA recently announced a partnership with 1in6, a trusted national resource for male survivors, to expand their services so that victims of abuse are able to anonymously access vital support from trained advocates when and how they need it. Victims can access 1in6 services at www.1in6.org/BSA. This is a multiyear commitment, which the BSA feels is an important component of its ongoing efforts to support victims.
Maintaining Programming and Upholding Commitments to All Stakeholders
Scouting will continue to provide unparalleled programs to young people – keeping them safe, supported and protected as it prepares them for their futures. The BSA today has some of the strongest, expert-informed youth protection policies found in any youth-serving organization, including mandatory youth protection training and background checks for all volunteers and staff, as well as policies that prohibit one-on-one interaction between youth and adults and require all volunteers and staff to report any suspected abuse to law enforcement.
Additional information about the BSA’s multilayered safeguards, our commitment to support victims, and our efforts to be part of the broader solution to child abuse is available at www.scouting.org/youth-safety.
Read the BSA’s Open Letter to Victims here.
More information and updates about the restructuring are available via the national organization’s dedicated restructuring website, www.BSArestructuring.org. Victims, as well as vendors and other potential creditors who have questions about their claims may contact Restructuring@scouting.org or call 1-866-907-BSA1 for the fastest response.
The BSA is represented in the restructuring by Sidley Austin LLP as legal counsel and Alvarez & Marsal North America LLC, as financial advisor.
About the Boy Scouts of America
The Boy Scouts of America provides the nation’s foremost youth program of character development and values-based leadership training, which helps young people be “Prepared. For Life.®” The Scouting organization is composed of nearly 2.2 million youth members between the ages of 5 and 21 and approximately 800,000 volunteers in local councils throughout the United States and its territories. For more information on the Boy Scouts of America, please visit www.Scouting.org.
Learn about the BSA’s youth protection policies in place today at www.scouting.org/youth-safety.
January, 2020 - Aloha Council Welcomes New Scout Executive Jesse Lopez
Jesse began his Scouting career as a District Executive in the Monterey Bay Area Council in Salinas, CA. He moved on to become the Sr. Exploring Executive and later District Director with the Pacific Skyline Council, San Mateo, CA. He was promoted to Field Director of the Golden Empire Council, Sacramento, CA and on to DFS at the CA Inland Empire Council. Most recently, he was Scout Executive of the Southern Sierra Council, Bakersfield, CA.
Jesse enjoys travel, outdoor adventure and golf. Jesse is a life-long Pittsburgh Steelers fan.
Jesse and his wife Tracy have 2 children. Kaela (21) and Nikolas (17). Both are camp staff members with the BSA. Both are studying in school.
Please join me in congratulating Jesse as he joins in partnership with the volunteers and staff of the Aloha Council to deliver quality Scouting experiences to the young people of the communities they serve.
November, 2019 - Farewell to Scout Executive Jeff Sulzbach
Mahalo from the Sulzbach Ohana
Dear Aloha Council Scouters:
I would like to personally thank each of you for your many hours of service to the Scouting program throughout the year. Our Scouts have such a great program because of our dedicated leaders. I would also like to thank our generous donors who support the program and who are helping us to improve our camps. Amazing volunteers and generous donors together, make for a great program. Mahalo nui loa!
You may have heard that the Sulzbach ohana is relocating to the Los Angeles area where I have accepted a new position with the BSA as Scout Executive/CEO for the Greater Los Angeles Area Council. We have met so many wonderful people over the past 6 years and made many lifelong friends. The aloha spirit will forever be part of our souls and for that we are grateful. We will miss the islands and hope that we can return often!
A hui hou!
Jeff Sulzbach, Scout Executive and family (Patty, Zach and Luke)
October, 2019 - Official Announcement from the National Council of Boy Scouts of America Regarding 2020 Membership Fees
For more than 100 years, Scouting has helped build future leaders by combining educational activities and lifelong values with fun and adventure in the outdoors. At Boy Scouts of America, we are dedicated to developing leaders of character by preparing young men and women for life by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law. The timeless ideals of the Scout Law, such as being trustworthy, helpful, kind and brave, make up the foundation young people need to address and overcome challenges in their lives and the issues facing their generation.
Now as we continue the Scouting mission, it is important that we keep pace with an ever-changing world. While costs to the organization have increased every year, the Boy Scouts of America has worked to keep the annual membership fee as low as possible by subsidizing core costs, including liability insurance we must carry to cover all official Scouting activities. Unfortunately, it is no longer possible to subsidize at the level we have in the past, especially as the cost of insurance has increased dramatically. We kept the cost low to make Scouting available to as many young people as possible but keeping the cost artificially low for many years now magnifies the impact of changes.
To ensure we have the resources to fulfill the promise of Scouting despite increasing operating costs, the National Executive Board of the Boy Scouts of America has made the difficult but necessary decision to increase the annual membership fee effective January 1, 2020 to:
- $60 for youth members in Cub Scouts, Scouts BSA, Venturing and Sea Scouts,
- $36 for youth members in Exploring, and
- $36 for adult members
- $60 per unit charter fee
Every dollar of the national membership fee will go toward the cost of essential services, including liability insurance for those participating in approved Scouting activities, program resources, safety standards, youth protection and personal safety training, and services to councils nationwide to sustain Scouting. The National organization will also continue to develop and improve resources that support our volunteers and youth members such as online registration, Member Care and Scoutbook, which now includes the Den Leader experience to ensure the safe and consistent delivery of Cub Scouting; as well as improvements aimed at simplifying the annual renewal process.
Across the country and in our own community, we know that Scouting remains one of the most valuable investments we can make to support young men and women today so they can become the leaders we will turn to tomorrow. From once-in-a-lifetime adventures to merit badges that spark interests and future careers; from campouts under the stars to service projects that leave a lasting impact on our communities; Scouting’s year-round program expands horizons and provides young people with a safe and welcoming place to learn, grow, and thrive.
That is why we are committed to ensuring that all youth can experience the character-building benefits of Scouting regardless of their financial situation. In addition to our existing council and unit membership assistance, we have established a national Growing Future Leaders Fund, which is funded entirely through donations, to provide additional financial support to those who need it.