This topic contains 4 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by PMurphy 4 months, 3 weeks ago.
March 29, 2019 at 9:05 am #194089
I have a rather unique situation and I can’t sleep at night knowing this “injustice” has gone on.
We had a boy complete all he requirements for Eagle.. all on time, all by the book. He completed just as he turned 18. He called the District Advancement guy to schedule his Eagle BOR and left a message. Because his speech is muffled because he has a hearing impediment (hearing aids in both ears), the District Advancement guy coudln’t make out the phone number on his answering machine. The boy, being your average Teenager who believed he did everything right, sat waiting for a return call…. that never came.
Once the boy brought it to the SM’s attention, we called the Advancement guy and explained. He admitted hearing a message from a boy named (first name) and admitted he coudln’t make out the phone number. He then proceeded to inform us that too much time had passed, and the boy is no longer eligible for Eagle… which would have made him a “3rd Generation Eagle Scout” in his family. Boy devastated, father devastated.
We protested to Council which claimed they have a “review board”… and after speaking to the review board head, he said, “Well, if the Advancement chair said no, then it’s no”. What the heck is a purpose of a “review board” if you DON’T REVIEW each case and judge it individually on its merits???
More time has passed and we ran into this young man at an unrelated event. Despite it now being a couple of years later, he is still devastated by the total lack of support he got from District then Council… as are 100% of the Troop leadership!
Given the particulars of this, we all feel he was (indirectly) discriminated against because of his hearing/speech impediment, and failed (yes, I choose that word purposely) by a “review board” and DE who did not do due diligence to properly “serve” this fine young man.
Now that BSA is making 1001 exceptions for boys, gay, trans, and now youth who “join late” and “every youth deserves a chance to be Eagle” (BSA’s own words)… what recourse do I have to appeal this at the National Level? What organization/person exists to have this HORRIBLE injustice overturned and this boy awarded the Eagle Scout rank he truly deserves?
March 29, 2019 at 2:31 pm #194622
Check out the Guide to Advancement, Section 22.214.171.124 Eagle Scout Board of Review Beyond the 18th Birthday. Given the multi-year timeframe I would look specifically at item #3 about using the Belated Eagle Scout Rank Application.
If the young man had everything completed except for the Board of Review (including his Scoutmaster Conference and all approvals on his project, etc.), I think this would specifically apply.
April 12, 2019 at 11:16 am #196282
Considering the time frame in this incident I wouldn’t be overly optimistic without legal representation involved. It pains me greatly to say that, but it would be a dishonor to my own Eagle award to not speak honestly. Despite our lofty goals and aspirations as Scouts, we are, after all, human. Corporate type mentality can creep in at the most inopportune moments in the shape of “office politics” along with the “old boy network” sprinkled in as well. I do not impugn the integrity of our professional Scouts, I’m sure they mean well. The “business mind set” is an insidious foe…… Occasionally the ‘Big Stick’ is necessary to break through the obstacles. I hope and pray you are successful in getting this injustice corrected.
April 16, 2019 at 8:41 am #196372
Wow, he was surrounded by failure on this venture starting at himself, his father and troop, and right up to council and district. There’s lots of accountability to be spread around on this one, and sounds like the entire process in your area needs to be examined and corrected. While I can’t agree this was a case of discrimination due to a disability (as I could see spotty cell phone reception leaving an equally unintelligible message), it is clear failure occurred. Like John Jeter stated, without getting legal minds (or the threat thereof) involved your chances aren’t good.
April 24, 2019 at 1:38 pm #197721
I feel for this young man, I really do. But as a former professional Scouter I fail to see how his DE failed him. The job of the DE is not to advocate for individual Scouts. It is to grow Scouting in his/her area. Please do not blame this on the professional.
April 30, 2019 at 5:30 pm #198709
I’d make one more pass at the council executive board and advancement committee before I went to the National Office. Your Scout Executive should be able to provide a contact to you for this purpose. Don’t let it go, determination will get the deed done.