Ticks aren’t fun, but are manageable in the field. Sure, it’s not great to find the little guys crawling on you (and it’s pretty safe to say that you WILL find them crawling on you at least once this summer), but we’ve devised some ways to minimize discomfort and the heebie-geebie feeling.
• If your Job Hazard Analysis (JHA) indicates that ticks are a problem in the area where you are working or camping, you will be required to use permethrin. SCA is responsible for your Worker’s Compensation claims and it costs us a lot of money to treat you for tick-borne illnesses- permethrin is just one way we’re trying to keep those costs down and keep you healthy! It’s pretty safe to say that crews in NH, VT, NY, CT, MA, NJ, PA, VA, WV, MS, TN, and GA will be required to use permethrin. All other crews in the east may use permethrin if you choose.
• Your members and their parents know that permethrin will be available for their use on their crew (it’s in their acceptance paperwork LINK). If they want to use it, make it available and help them out with the application, especially in an area where you have indicated that ticks are a problem on your JHA. Members are not required to use permethrin because they are volunteers (not on SCA’s dime for Worker’s Comp) but we still want to keep your members healthy so please let them know that permethrin is available.
• Frequent tick checks (sometimes twice daily!) are a huge part of avoiding tick-borne illnesses. Model an appropriate tick check with your co-leader on the first or second day of the crew and carve out times in the day devoted to tick checks.
• At training, you will sign the Permethrin Use Agreement. This agreement will extend through your program, so you don’t need to sign another one.
• If you or a member gets an embedded tick (actually biting you, not just crawling on your skin), it’s imperative that you call to report it during business hours. We want to make sure you’re taken care of if, by chance, someone should come down with a tick-borne illness!
• Please review SCA’s tick protocol and information regarding ticks and permethrin use. Review it with your kids….empower them with knowledge!