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Inclusive Unit Award (Old)

Learn how to earn the Inclusive Unit Award!
Will you go for Bronze, Silver, or Gold?

Scouts for Equality (SFE) is compiling a national database of inclusive BSA units and making this data freely available to the public. We want to let others know that you’re a safe space in Scouting. In recognition of your status as an inclusive unit, SFE will mail you an Inclusive Unit Award (suitable for framing) upon completion of the “Silver” and/or “Gold” requirements. You may attest (via self-reporting, on the Honor System) to any level at any time (you need not start with “Bronze” before moving on to “Silver” or “Gold”).

Note: in the language below, “gay” is meant to be inclusive of the full LGBQ+ spectrum with the exception of transgender. LGBTQ is meant to be fully inclusive of all identities. Gay is used as an umbrella term out of convenience in this document, but certainly does not represent the full diversity of sexual orientations.

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View the program requirements below, or download a PDF version of the requirements.


Bronze, Silver, and Gold Requirements

 

“Bronze” Accreditation

  1. Unit self-identifies as inclusive. Have a member of your unit complete the Inclusive Unit Certification form, which registers your unit as inclusive with Scouts for Equality.

“Silver” Accreditation

Complete all requirements for “Bronze” plus:

  1. Adopt a non-discrimination policy.
    1. At a unit committee meeting, discuss and adopt a non-discrimination policy. (Suggested non-discrimination policy). If you need help writing a policy that fits your unit, email us at chapters@scoutsforequality.org.
    2. Make your nondiscrimination policy publicly available in some way (e.g. post on your website), and make it known within your troop and chartering organization that you’re an inclusive unit.
  2. Share the Inclusive Scouting Award (ISA).
    1. Talk to the active adult leaders and parents in your troop about the Inclusive Scouting Award. This can be done via email (sample letter) or at an adult meeting. Along with this, share with them how to join SFE if they desire to do so.
    2. Make the Inclusive Scouting Award available to everyone in your unit. Remember that nobody is required to wear it, but the patch should be readily available to all adults (and youth with their parents’ permission). To order ISA’s in bulk, please email us at specialorders@scoutsforequality.org.
  3. Address and accept as a unit committee these sleeping arrangements for youth members of your troop:
    1. Gay Youth: Sexual activity amongst youth is contrary to BSA Policy, and gay youth deserve no additional policing to maintain that policy. Excluding gay campers only serves to promote the stereotype that these children are predators and deserve to be isolated to preserve the safety of their peers. Gay kids are just kids, looking for community, support, and an opportunity to grow through a summer camp experience. Gay youth should be treated identically to straight youth for matters of sleeping accommodations and all other Scouting activities. Please remember that some Scouts, including gay Scouts, are uncomfortable tenting with others and should be allowed to tent alone if they desire to do so.
    2. Trans Youth: Simply speak to each of the trans youths individually, asking them how they would prefer to be treated. If they identify as male, they will likely want to tent with other males. Conversely, if they identify as female, they will likely want to tent with other females. If any of them are taking measures to adjust their physical appearance, they may prefer to have the privacy of their own tent.

“Gold” Accreditation

Complete all requirements for “Bronze” and “Silver” plus:

  1. Outreach
    1. Contact at least one community organization or religious community in your area, letting them know your unit is inclusive and supportive of all youth and adults, OR contact at least one other BSA unit in your council, encouraging them to take part in this program.
  2. Bullying Prevention
    1. As a troop, discuss bullying prevention. If possible, use the Scouts for Equality YP+ Anti-Bullying Training (contact us at info@scoutsforequality.org). Alternatively, use the BSA Bullying Prevention powerpoint, and the supplemental materials or another suitable set of materials of your choice in your discussions.

Receiving Accreditation for Silver and Gold Status

 

Once you have completed these requirements, please fill out the Inclusive Unit Certification form. If you’ve already filled out the form for Bronze recognition and don’t want to fill it out again, e-mail us at chapters@scoutsforequality.org. In either case we will mail you your Inclusive Unit Award Certificate.

Maintaining Accreditation for Silver and Gold Status

 

Accreditation will be valid until the end of May of the following calendar year. Around May 1 of each year, we will send your unit a reminder email that they will need to complete the following to maintain certification:

“Silver” Re-Accreditation

  1. As a committee, reaffirm your nondiscrimination policy and remind adult leaders about your sleeping policies for gay and trans youth.
  2. Hold an annual meeting (or send an annual email) for adult leaders and parents regarding the ISA knot, its meaning, and its importance. (Parents of new Scouts might not know about it). Along with this, share with them how to join Scouts for Equality if they desire to do so.

“Gold” Re-Accreditation

Complete all requirements for “Silver” Re-Accreditation plus:

  1. Contact at least one community organization or religious community in your area, letting them know your unit is inclusive and supportive of all youth and adults, OR contact at least one other BSA unit in your council, encouraging them to take part in this program.
  2. Hold an annual bullying prevention training. If possible, use the Scouts for Equality YP+ Anti-Bullying Training (contact us at info@scoutsforequality.org). Alternatively, use the BSA Bullying Prevention powerpoint, and the supplemental materials or another suitable set of materials of your choice in your discussions.