BSA Enterprise Risk Management

Hello fellow Scouters,

I am Tony Higuera, Scoutmaster Troop 1911, BSA WFA CD/Instructor, past NYLT CD at Grizzly base, and National Jamboree 2017 Troop 1 Scoutmaster. I am honored to take over the Council Risk Management Board and its duties.

I am excited because the mission of the board directly affects our adult volunteers and Scouts in the program. The safety of our youth, volunteers, staff, and employees is an important part of the Scouting experience. As a USAF officer and aviator for nearly 27 years, Risk Management was part of my daily life. I look forward to putting together a valuable and relevant program for you.

What is ERM? Enterprise Risk Management is a disciplined approach that enables an organization to identify, evaluate, analyze, monitor, and mitigate the risks that threaten the achievement of the organization’s strategic objectives. Every organization is susceptible to risk in many different areas. In scouting we do things with our scouts that have a certain level of risk. 

ERM serves two roles: risk management and health and safety.

“The Scouting program – as contained in our handbooks and literature – integrates many safety features. However, no policy or procedure will replace the review and vigilance of trusted adults and leaders at the point of program execution.

Commit yourself to creating a safe and healthy environment by:

  1. Knowing and executing the BSA program as contained in our publications
  2. Planning tours, activities, and events with vigilance using the tools provided
  3. Setting the example for safe behavior and equipment use during program
  4. Engaging and educating all participants in discussions about hazards and risks
  5. Reporting incidents in a timely manner”

(Enterprise Risk Management Committee Guidebook, No. 680-026)

Every professional, competent organization or program has a Vision and Mission. Below is the Vision and Mission as directed by BSA National:

Vision: The Enterprise Risk Management Committee will be an advocate for the safety, health, and well-being of all participants in council Scouting programs; a demonstrated leader promoting safety and healthy behaviors; and a resource advancing competent risk assessment and anticipation of hazards in council programs, activities, and services.

Mission: The purpose of the ERM Committee is to:

  • Advance and provide local leadership for identifying, reducing, or eliminating known or foreseeable hazards and risks.
  • Promote risk assessment for programs, activities, and services.
  • Promote preparedness as well as physical and mental fitness for youth and adults.
  • Maintain a body of knowledge on health, safety, and risk issues in the council.

It is my goal to start with educating you with the many aspects of the program that directly affect your work as a volunteer: Such as the Guide to Sage Scouting, The Sweet Sixteen of BSA Safety, Incident reporting requirements, why it is important for you to report incidents and near misses to the council and basic no nonsense Risk Management of Scout activities.

Look for more information in the Council bi-monthly newsletter, the Council Facebook Page and Email. I am available via Thiguera@aol.com should you have any further questions, comments, or ideas about the program. Also, if you think you have skills that we could use to help improve the program, and have an interest in becoming part of the committee, I am eager to hear from you, as well.

Thank you for your time,

Tony Higuera