The Boy Scouts of America is one of the largest youth-oriented non-profits in the country. Founded in 1910, at recent count there were almost 2.2 million young boys involved in scouting and close to one million volunteers involved with these youth.1
This trusted national organization, which requires its members to take an oath to be “morally straight” also has a shameful history of Boy Scouts abuse and, despite being aware of incidents of sexual abuse in the ranks, they failed to live up to their own moral standards and did not protect the young men from the volunteers listed in their own “perversion files.”
Well, the clear answer is far too many, and it is also clear that the Boy Scouts of America knew about hundreds of sexual predators and thousands of incidents of suspected abuse. For almost 100 years they kept a confidential blacklist that contained the names of individuals supposedly banned from the organization for sexual abuse.
The organization fought hard in court to prevent the release of these files, which contain documented information about thousands of cases of Boy Scouts abuse over the years. When this information was finally released, it showed the tragic extent of the problem and how little was done to prevent volunteers from continuing to abuse innocent children.
Some examples include:2
There are thousands of people across the country who have the right to file claims against the Boy Scouts of America,3 and this is why the BSA filed for bankruptcy protection recently. Bankruptcy allowed the leadership to put many individual cases on hold but also motivated the organization to create a compensation trust fund for those abused in scouting.
There is certainly money available to pay a large group claim, given that the Boy Scouts reported assets of more than $10 billion.3 By filing bankruptcy, the BSA hopes to negotiate a settlement for all lawsuits in one court, cutting its legal costs and protecting the 70% of its assets3 held by individual “councils” and leaders.
There is help available for the victims of scouting abuse, and new court decisions are extending or reopening a window for victims to report the abuse they suffered and join in a class-action lawsuit or group claim against perpetrators and those who knew about the abuse and still failed to provide a safe environment for the children in their care.
If you believed it was too late to report past sexual abuse or file a lawsuit, these changes to the law may allow you to finally see justice for yourself or a loved one:4
These windows are open for trustworthy and brave men who are willing to report the abuse they suffered. Not only are the sexual predators themselves responsible for the years of pain and silent suffering these people have endured, but so is the organization that knew about the abuse but did nothing.
Failing to protect the young men that it claimed to be teaching solid American values is one of the worst crimes a youth-focused group can commit against its members. Allowing known sexual predators to remain in charge of trusting children, either by covering up abuse or by carelessly ignoring it, has dramatically increased the number of young people exposed to abusers and allowed these crimes to be repeated over and over again.
Holding the Boy Scouts of America responsible for this shameful failing in their “Duty to God and Country” is leading passionate legal teams to take up this cause on behalf of the victims. There has never been a better time to speak up about past abuse. It is time to hold the right people accountable for their actions and to make them pay for the physical and emotional pain and suffering the victims have endured.
As difficult as it is to come forward and tell your story, you can always reach out to a trusted team of attorneys for a free and confidential case evaluation. At Saunders and Walker, P.A., we have experience in helping survivors of all types of sexual abuse reclaim their rights and the resources they need to recover. Contact us online or call us today at 1-800-748-7115 if you or a loved one has been a victim. Let us fight the battle for justice on your behalf.