Despite facing a litany of new claims of sexual abuse of minors by former clergy members, the Boy Scouts of America will reportedly file for bankruptcy. The organization reportedly plans to file by March 11, according to ABC News. The lawsuits by abuse victims against BSA have rippled throughout the nation over the last five years and proved a costly proposition, making it difficult for the organization to stay afloat.
Last week, for example, a judge in Arizona ordered an injunction against the organization, ordering it to pay $2.6 million to five men who claimed they were molested by a former scout leader. At the hearing, the judge cited the organization’s past inaction as a factor in why he required BSA to pay the money.
In January, an Anchorage, Alaska judge granted a six-figure injunction to a family of five men who claimed they were molested by a former scout leader while they were children. The plaintiffs alleged that the director had abused them multiple times from the late 1980s to the early 1990s. As a result of the lawsuit, the former director had to pay more than $600,000 in restitution and is banned from Scouting for life.
The organization has also seen more accusations against people it has allegedly let work with kids. In late December, three men claiming to be victims of pedophile scout leaders said the organization had covered up their claims for years, effectively keeping them as the victims. A lawyer for the organization called the claims “preposterous.” In 2017, two members of the Indiana state House of Representatives, Luke Messer and Todd Rokita, alleged in a letter that two senior officials were members of a unit found guilty of hiding sexual abuse of children. In response, the organization’s leadership called the allegation “inaccurate and unfounded.”
The organization’s downfall seems seemingly inevitable, having lost support from much of the public for decades. Late last year, dozens of former executives and Scout leaders wrote an open letter to BSA’s national leadership citing “decades of cover-ups” and “concerted efforts” to cover up abuse allegations. “Your neglect of your duties to protect young people has resulted in thousands of families having a difficult time finding places to send their children as Boy Scouts,” the letter said.
Read the full story at ABC News.
Arizona judge orders Boy Scouts of America to pay $2.6 million in molestation case
Three former BSA leaders call for Boy Scouts of America leaders to resign over decades of sexual abuse cover-up