Council Risk Management Committee

Function of the Risk Management Committee

  • Systematically and proactively identify, assess, and resolve health and safety issues and hazards associated with new, modified, or expanded program activities, and with newly recognized hazards/potential risk/loss exposures in existing programs.
  • Promote personal health and physical and mental fitness as well as provide guidance when emergencies occur, and assess the impact on overall wellness.
  • Develop and promote standards, rules, policies, guidelines, procedures, literature, awards, education, health and safety training programs, and information systems that will protect participants in program activities and help prepare emergencies.
  • Support internal groups, committees, panels, and task forces by providing health and safety expertise on issues that affect their respective missions and goals.
  • Join, where appropriate, with external groups and associations to advance health and safety efforts.
  • Facilitate health and safety leadership for council-wide events such as camporees, conferences, pow wows, seminars and meetings.
  • Aggressively review known injury, illness, and accident data to establish root causes, identify trends, and update council-wide prevention strategies. The goal is to eliminate serious or fatal events and to reduce other events to minor or negligible results
  • Identify health, safety, risk management, crisis communications, insurance, and business continuity consultants who can assist the council as subject-matter experts/specialists
  • Maintain a quarterly review of BSA national policies and guidelines related to health and safety issues.
  • Work with council training personnel to develop and implement a training plan that addresses health and safety issues and heightens leader and youth awareness of safety concerns and risk avoidance.
  • Help all council structures stay informed regarding national BSA policies and procedures, requirements, and recommendations related to safety protection, accident protection, emergency preparedness, health and safety education/training, fitness, camp standards, shooting sports, COPE activities, and aquatics.
  • Help conduct council precamp and postcamp inspections, since council camps can introduce significant risk exposures for accidents.
  • Support council camp operations in the area of camp health. Assist the council camping program with training for the camp health officer, serve as a liaison to local medical facilities, and develop standing orders for health and safety issues.
  • In conjunction with others, evaluate injury reports from the camp health lodge records to look for trends.
  • Assist local professional staff in identifying and logging injuries and accidents in the national database.
  • Maintain awareness of health and safety issues in your area and how those specifically relate to Scouting programs.
  • Provide regular communications to leaders at all levels relative to health and safety issues.
  • Systematically and proactively identify trends and hazards in the local council's Scouting activities that threaten the well-being of individuals and financial assets of the council. Proactive assessment requires a comprehensive familiarization of council and district activities.
  • Communicate effectively with the chairs of other committees in the council structure.
  • Develop a risk management plan. After the committee has identified the exposures that may cause accidents, evaluated serious and fatal accidents and violations of Youth Protection policies, and reviewed injury reports and allegations of abuse, it should be prepared to plan a strategy that will not only address specific problems but also be the basis for an overall effort to heighten the awareness of the need for safety and loss prevention.
  • Develop a risk management training plan for all Scouting leaders.
  • Working with the council's Youth Protection chair, prepare, disseminate, and evaluate the effectiveness of the National Council's Youth Protection program as applies in the local council, including availability of training for volunteers and employees, appropriateness of facilities at council properties, and other risk factors. Review reports of Youth Protection concerns or incidents.
  • Disseminate policies and procedures regarding safety and loss prevention that are developed by both the National Council and the local council. This will enable council, district and unit leaders, as well as youth members, to stay current and alert to safety guidelines.
  • Develop a council enterprise risk management communications plan to leaders at all levels.
  • Evaluate and address existing or potential environmental issues. The committee should review council operations in relation to any potential environmental issues and compliance with local, state, or federal requirements.
  • Identify and address any workplace safety issues that exist, considering the role of the council as an employer for both year-round and seasonal employees.
  • Periodically and in conjunction with other committee leaders, evaluate and recommend changes to the council's insurance coverage. Maintain an understanding of BSA insurance program for the local council.
  • Survey council business risk annually, including information technology backup and security, OSHA requirements, and physical plat maintenance.
  • Monitor state legislation applying to Youth Protection; training requirements for camps, leaders, and youth-serving organizations; state-mandated criminal background checks (CBCs); and any other pending legislative initiatives that may impact Scouting.

NEW Annual Health and Medical Record Released

The new, simplified annual health and medical record was launched on March 1. We have been gathering feedback and answering your commonly asked questions on our new landing page. At the bottom of the landing page, you'll see a button labeled "Have Questions? Get Answers Here."

Our most asked question so far relates to whether current records are still valid. The answer is yes. No one is being asked to get a new exam if his or her current exam will be valid for summer camp. All others should utilize the new record. 

Safety Checklist Tools

Councils, Districts and Units alike can make use of these recently updated Campout Safety Checklist and Event Safety Checklist sheets as they are planning activities. These are a great toolkits to ensure that all necessary safety planning precautions have been taken relative to your activities.

Committee Membership

The Risk Management Committee is comprised of volunteers from across the Council with specialized skill sets in the areas of risk management. 

Mary Benjamin, Roger Butler Insurance Agency
Phil Brodeur, Council Vice President - Administration
John Dowd, Dowd Insurance Agency
Fran Lamountain, RN, Town of West Springfield
Hunter J McCormick, Staff Advisor, Western Massachusetts Council BSA
Terry Pearsons

Resources Offered Through the Risk Management Committee

    The following training programs are available to be provided at your Council, District or Unit activity/event/meeting by a member of the Council Risk Management Committee. Please contact the Risk Management Committee Chairman at

    BSA Ceremonies
    Historic Picture of BSA and Emergency Preparedness

    Council Disaster Recovery Plan