This section is from the book "Scouting For Rural Boys. A Manual For Leaders", by Boy scouts of America. See also: Outdoor Adventure Manual: Essential Scouting Skills for the Great Outdoors.
While it is true that the Area Council Health and Safety Committee is responsible for outlining the council's plan, yet the district is where these things happen. The meeting places to be inspected and kept safe are in the district. The Scouts to be trained in safety and first aid are in the districts of the council, as are their leaders who must be made watchful on health and safety matters as affecting both farm areas and country towns.
As depicted in the following diagram, both the Area Council and the District Health and Safety Committees are concerned first with Protection, or safety, meantime carrying on Education so that less protection will be needed, and also "Being Prepared" to render Emergency Service as and if the necessity arises.
Running through these three responsibilities is a double emphasis-to take care of one's self, and then the basic Scout idea of helping others through the skills mastered by the Scout. This service feature is the background of all Scouting skills. "Merit Badges" are worn to acquaint others with one's readiness to help.
The following chart indicates the range of technical men who should be on the Area Council Health and Safety Committee. It also indicates the source of such men in the average Local Council; the volunteer fire companies are another source of manpower.
This Committee not only must have exact technical knowledge but it must be a Committee of people who will "do something" about hazards found and who have prestige, skill and tact enough to help other people "see" the hazards, "want" to correct them, and actually do so.
In good sized districts, it will be found desirable to secure a committee quite like the Area Council Health and Safety Committee, with a man to look after each of the major interests listed above. In smaller districts, with fewer people, the various things to be done, as specified in the Local Council By-Law, can be assigned as definite responsibilities to a smaller number of people who in turn may rely upon the area council committee experts for any needed technical counsel.
The duties here outlined provide for general planning as well as for specific inspections and precautions -which will have to be done by the district committees of the area council.
1. "This Committee* shall, a. Establish such local policies as may be necessary to insure that all activities in which Cubs and Scouts engage shall be carried on under safe and healthful conditions.
b. Prepare an annual program of health and safety, directed toward the protection of Scouts, their education in safety skills and health practices and the rendering of service in time of emergency or disaster, and with the cooperation of the Rural District Committees on Health and Safety, see that this program is effectively promoted.
2. This Committee shall, with the cooperation of the administrative officers of the council, be responsible for the advance reviewing of all planned activities of the council with a view to making such recommendations as may be necessary to better safeguard and promote the good health and safety of the members of the Boy Scouts of America, as they may be related to any programmed activity. It shall develop and promote adequate plans for the protection of the health and safety of Cubs, Scouts and Senior Scouts at all places where they officially gather. In carrying out the foregoing, the committee shall be responsible for: a. Inspection of meeting places, camps, transportation equipment, and boats used for all purposes, and recommendations for improvements where necessary.
b. Encouraging medical examinations of new Scouts while yet in the Tenderfoot Class, and all leaders and Scouts attending camp, for the purposes of:
1. Limiting physical activities when necessary;
2. Determining remediable defects.
c. Cooperation in training of leaders in the theory and practices of protection.
* Insofar as is practicable both the Council and the District Committees on Health and Safety shall include in their membership men representing or experts in Public Health, Aquatics, Medical, First Aid, Public Safety, Firearms and Fire Prevention ; also Mountaineering where necessary.
d. Investigation of all serious accidents and cases of serious sickness occurring while these groups are participating in their programs.
3. It shall plan a procedure; (A) for the training of Cubs, Scouts, and Senior Scouts in safety skills and for disseminating health knowledge through such means as activities, visual education, publications and brief discussions; (B) to interest parents in the correction of remediable physical defects of their sons.
4. It shall develop with the Organization and Extension Committee, one or more units of Senior Scouts to be known as Emergency Service Corps, which will function in the event of minor or major disasters within the council territory, this to be done in cooperation with the American Red Cross, and in accordance with the plan outlined by the National Council."