Following the Girl Scout Safety Guidelines
Every adult in Girl Scouting is responsible for the physical and
emotional safety of girls, and we all demonstrate that by agreeing to
follow these guidelines at all times.
- Follow the Safety Activity Checkpoints. Instructions for staying safe while participating in activities are detailed in the Safety Activity Checkpoints,
available from Manitou Council. Read the checkpoints, follow them, and
share them with other volunteers, parents, and girls before engaging in
activities with girls.
- Arrange for proper adult supervision of girls.
Your group must have at least two unrelated, approved adult volunteers
present at all times, plus additional adult volunteers as necessary,
depending on the size of the group and the ages and abilities of girls.
Adult volunteers must be at least 18 years old (or the age of majority
defined by the state, if it is older than 18) and must be screened by
Manitou Council before volunteering. One lead volunteer in every group
must be female.
- Get parent/guardian permission.
When an activity takes place that is outside the normal time and
place, advise each parent/guardian of the details of the activity and
obtain permission for girls to participate.
- Report abuse. Sexual advances,
improper touching, and sexual activity of any kind with girl members
are forbidden. Physical, verbal, and emotional abuse of girls is also
forbidden. Follow Manitou Council’s guidelines for reporting concerns
about abuse or neglect that may be occurring inside or outside of Girl
- Be prepared for emergencies. Work
with girls and other adults to establish and practice procedures for
emergencies related to weather, fire, lost girls/adults, and site
security. Always keep handy a well-stocked first-aid kit, girl health
histories, and contact information for girls’ families.
- Travel safely. When
transporting girls to planned Girl Scout field trips and other
activities that are outside the normal time and place, every driver
must be an approved adult volunteer and have a good driving record, a
valid license, and a registered/insured vehicle. Insist that everyone is
in a legal seat and wears her seat belt at all times, and adhere to
state laws regarding booster seats and requirements for children in
- Ensure safe overnight outings.
Prepare girls to be away from home by involving them in planning, so
they know what to expect. Avoid having men sleep in the same space as
girls and women. During family or parent-daughter overnights, one
family unit may sleep in the same sleeping quarters in program areas.
When parents are staffing events, daughters should remain in quarters
with other girls rather than in staff areas.
- Role-model the right behavior.
Never use illegal drugs. Don’t consume alcohol, smoke, or use foul
language in the presence of girls. Do not carry ammunition or firearms
in the presence of girls unless given special permission by Manitou Council for group marksmanship activities.
- Create an emotionally safe space.
Adults are responsible for making Girl Scouting a place where girls
are as safe emotionally as they are physically. Protect the emotional
safety of girls by creating a team agreement and coaching girls to honor
it. Agreements typically encourage behaviors like respecting a
diversity of feelings and opinions; resolving conflicts constructively;
and avoiding physical and verbal bullying, clique behavior, and
- Ensure that no girl is treated differently.
Girl Scouts welcomes all members, regardless of race, ethnicity,
background, disability, family structure, religious beliefs, and
socioeconomic status. When scheduling, helping plan, and carrying out
activities, carefully consider the needs of all girls involved,
including school schedules, family needs, financial constraints,
religious holidays, and the accessibility of appropriate transportation
and meeting places.
- Promote online safety.
Instruct girls never to put their full names or contact information
online, engage in virtual conversation with strangers, or arrange
in-person meetings with online contacts. On group websites, publish
girls’ first names only and never divulge their contact information.
Teach girls the Girl Scout Online Safety Pledge and have them commit to it.
- Keep girls safe during money-earning activities.
Girl Scout cookies and other council-sponsored product sales are an
integral part of the program. During Girl Scout product sales, you are
responsible for the safety of girls, money, and products. In addition, a
wide variety of organizations, causes, and fundraisers may appeal to
Girl Scouts to be their labor force. When representing Girl Scouts,
girls cannot participate in money-earning activities that represent
partisan politics or that are not Girl Scout–approved product sales and
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