Youth Protection Training Exemption for Mental Disabilities

BSA youth protection logo

So, you have adult Scouts 18 years old or older who are registered beyond the age of eligibility (RBAE). Their registrations are based on severely limited mental abilities. Their adult applications have been filled out and now they must take Youth Protection Training (YPT).  “Really??” you ask. “No way!”

Scouts who cognitively function below their chronological age may not be in it for rank advancement or to earn 110 merit badges. They just may want to go camping at a park and hang out with their friends. The Scouting program naturally provides these opportunities for those with limited cognitive capabilities.

Youth protection and two deep leadership may be far beyond their comprehension. Their parents, teachers, and medical partners can usually vouch for this lack of understanding.

Participants who can’t comprehend YPT may be exempted from the requirement.

The Registration Guidebook of the Boy Scouts of America has a section that explains what to do. “Adults without the Mental Capacity to Take Youth Protection Training” states: “There are some exceptional situations when an adult applicant does not have the mental capacity to take and/or to comprehend the concepts being delivered in Youth Protection Training (YPT). In those situations, the Scout executive can request a YPT exemption for the individual.” Most Scout executives will understand how much it is needed to request this type of exemption for some of our Scouts and in some cases, whole units.

Be aware that individuals who do not have the mental capacity to understand the YPT information are the only individuals who can be exempted from taking the training. Determine this action on a case by case basis.

You can find the Youth Protection Training Exemption Request among the forms in the back of the BSA’s latest Registration Guidebook (

If you run into issues filling out this form or have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact your Council Disabilities Committee, Council Champion, or council registrar, who can help get your questions answered and problems resolved.