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Advancement News

Merit Badges - Citizenship in Society Merit Badge

Beginning on November 1, 2021, the Citizenship in Society merit badge will be available for Scouts to earn on an optimal basis. The badge will become required for the rank of Eagle Scout on July 1, 2022, allowing Life Scouts to continue working on current requirements until June 30, 2022. (Black Swamp note: All Eagle requirements 1-6 must be completed by June 30).

Starting July 1, 2022, Eagle Scout candidates must earn the new Citizenship in Society merit badge. That will be 21 merit badges in total - 14 required and 7 electives. The requirements and the Notes to the Counselor will be posted at the following link, where you can scroll down to "Citizenship in Society" and click either link for "Counselor" or "Scouts" for more information:

Merit Badges | Boy Scouts of America (scouting.org)

There will be no pamphlet for this badge.

Goal of the Merit Badge
The goal of the Citizenship in Society merit badge is to help educate Scouts on what diversity, equity, and inclusion are; why they are important; and how to lead ethically and inclusively to contribute to the cultivating of an environment of belonging for all Scouts. This merit badge is one of the educational and awareness initiatives the BSA is implementing to ensure every youth feels welcomed and wholly included, to achieve a sense of belonging with the Scouts, and to prepare them for success in our ever-evolving world.

Expectations of the Scout
Learning key terminology.
Understanding how diversity, equity, and inclusion relate to the Scout Oath and Scout Law.
Evaluating scenarios to understand how they make others feel and how each person can serve as a supportive and inclusive leader who values others’ thoughts and opinions.
Collaborating with a Scout or youth from a different background to exchange information and experiences.
Brainstorming how to optimize the welcoming environment of their Scouting units and actins they
personally commit to taking.

Documenting key recommendations to share with their counselor.

Expectations of the Merit Badge Counselor
This merit badge does not include a pamphlet. It will require a Scout to do their own research and to dig as deeply and as detailed as the Scout desires.
The counselor is to serve as a facilitator who draws out from the
Scout what they have discovered and learned, and how they plan to
put it into action. The counselor is not to interject their own opinions and beliefs but instead should consider the Scout’s experience and journey into these topics. The role of the counselor is that of a skilled listener and discussion leader, as well as someone informed on key concepts of diversity, equity, and inclusion through BSA-provided training and self-guided exploration.

A safe environment must be provided for the Scout to discuss these topics and their observations without judgment. The Scout Oath and Scout Law are the appropriate boundaries to use in these discussions, and your skills as the counselor should demonstrate inclusive leadership and how to value everyone’s thoughts and opinions. In addition, review the Boy Scouts of America Scouter Code of Conduct (including Youth Protection Guidelines, with which all in -person and virtual interactions must comply):
Due to the maturity and skill needed to serve as the counselor of this merit badge, it is recommended that this merit badge not be offered in a summer-camp setting. It is not intended to be added onto the existing duties of summer-camp staff members or included in a class setting like a merit badge college. The intent is for the true learning to be experienced through the Scout’s own research. It will work most effectively in the Scout’s discussions with their merit badge counselor or in a small group setting. The goal is to have openness and depth of conversation. (This can be offered in a small group setting following Youth Protection requirements).

Black Swamp note: All Citizenship in Society Merit Badge Counselors MUST complete and submit the Merit Badge Counselor (Facilitator) Expectations to facilitate this merit badge. The application can be DOWNLOADED CLICKING HERE!


Black Swamp Area Council
2100 Broad Avenue, Findlay Ohio
(419) 422-4356