A Scout Is Trustworthy

The first point of the Scout Law, a Scout is trustworthy, is at the very core of what the Scouting program represents. Scouting depends on trustworthy people to be good role models and to be of high character to help build young boys into honorable men. While the vast majority of Scout leaders have been and continue to be just that, there have been times when this was not true. To violate the trust of a child by sexually victimizing them is the ultimate betrayal and the antithesis of all that Scouting represents.

The Boy Scouts of America expresses our deepest heartfelt apologies to any person who has been the victim of sexual abuse through their involvement in Scouting. We are profoundly saddened that individuals felt they could use their position in Scouting to harm youth. The Scout promise to be trustworthy has been dishonored by such violations.

Knowing that the effects of childhood sexual abuse can have an enduring impact into adulthood, we want to reach out with support and care to those who are struggling with past abuse. We are grateful to all who have had the courage to report abuse, and we recognize the strength that was needed to do so. Although this is a difficult step, we encourage others to contact us as well.

With the utmost regard for those that have suffered abuse, the Boy Scouts of America has established a help line (855-295-1531) and email contact address (scouthelp@scouting.org). Any Scout, former Scout, or Scout family member who suffered abuse by a Scout leader or adult volunteer is encouraged to contact the help line by calling the toll-free number or by sending an email. All calls will be received with sensitivity and respectful listening. With your help, we will continue to strengthen and improve the child protection policies of the BSA , and we pledge to work toward regaining the trust you placed in the Boy Scouts of America.