The Boy Scouts Organization is accused of a century long cover-up, hiding evidence of sexual abuse by scout leaders. That evidence is now online for everyone to see and 20 Kansans are listed.
The group has been keeping a list of what it calls ineligible volunteers since 1919. But now the Oregon Supreme Court ordered the files to be released.
An attorney has organized data from 1970 to 1991 with 1,900 volunteers on the list. It details accusations or convictions against them.
A victim says the files may have protected the Boy Scouts but did not protect him. "You know, scouting does have some good points. however, right now it's a very dangerous program for young boys," said Tom Stewart.
The organization tells Eyewitness News it now does criminal background checks and is a mandatory reporter of suspected abuse. It released the statement below about the situation.
The Boy Scouts of America believes any occurrence of abuse is unacceptable, and we regret
there have been times when the BSA's best efforts to protect children were insufficient. For that
we are deeply sorry and extend our deepest sympathies to victims. We are committed to helping
members in our Scouting family who have suffered abuse and assisting them through a variety of
means, including counseling.
We maintain our Ineligible Volunteer Files solely to help our organization remove and keep out
individuals deemed to be unfit leaders. The files help us protect those in Scouting and are just
one component of our broader Youth Protection program. Scouting has long maintained multiple
barriers to abuse, of which the IV Files are part. The files alone have limitations and were meant
to serve as only one of the barriers to keep unfit individuals from joining the BSA as part of a
comprehensive effort to keep kids safe.
In the more than 30 years since these released files were created, we have continuously enhanced
our multi-tiered policies and procedures, which now include criminal background checks,
comprehensive training programs, safety policies, and mandatory reporting to law enforcement
of abuse or suspicion of abuse. We have always cooperated fully with any request from law
enforcement and today require our members to report even suspicion of abuse directly to their
We are committed to the ongoing enhancement of our program in line with evolving best
practices for protecting youth.
The Ineligible Volunteer Files exist solely to help the BSA remove and keep out unfit individuals
whose actions are inconsistent with the standards of Scouting. As one component of our broader
Youth Protection program, the files function well to help protect youth.