Cape Cod Camp Reaches Out To Sen. Brown About Sex Abuse Allegations

By Karen Anderson, WBZ-TV

SANDWICH (CBS) – The family that runs a camp on Cape Cod has reached out to Senator Scott Brown to tell him how sad they feel about what has happened.

Brown says he was sexually abused by a camp counselor on the Cape when he was 10. He has not named the camp, but the Director of Camp Good News in Sandwich, Jane Brooks, has confirmed that Brown was a camper there was he was ten years old.

Brown released a statement late Friday night:

“I wish I had said something 40 years ago when these events occurred, but I was scared and embarrassed. I want to be clear that the reason I write about these incidents in my book is not to settle any scores, but to let people know they can overcome the obstacles and hardships they face in life. If by opening up about what happened to me I’ve given others the courage to talk about their own abuse, or just comforted someone who felt alone, then I feel I’ve accomplished something important.” – U.S. Senator Scott Brown

Brooks said as soon as she heard Brown disclose the abuse, she and her family called him and sent him a letter. Brooks says, “It’s just made us sad.”

WBZ-TV’s Karen Anderson reports.

We asked the camp directors whether they planned to try to find the counselor. Dr. Stephen Brooks, Jane’s brother, says they will defer to Senator Brown. Brooks say they are eager to help if he wishes to do that, and if he wants to let it rest, they will support him as well.

Read: Patrick: Brown Abuse Revelations Could Help Others

Brooks says much has changed since years ago. “Right now it’s a lot easier to collect data on counselors, so we do the (background checks) and so many things to screen our counselors, interviews, references, we even have other counselors interview the counselors if they’re not close by.”

Read: Accused Camp Counselor Could Face Punishment

Brooks believes Brown could also help camps strengthen laws. Brooks said, “The American Camping Association probably would like to work with Senator Brown to even improve people’s access to criminal records. This might be a positive thing. I think that’s what the Senator wants and we hope for the same.”

The Brooks family has also written a letter to parents of current campers:

Dear Parents,

You may have heard in the past few days about Senator Scott Brown’s new book, in which he describes his experience of sexual abuse at a camp on Cape Cod when he was 10 years old. Since there will be much said in the media associated with the Senator’s disclosure, we wanted to approach our parent community with clarity and transparency. Our camp is committed to the physical and emotional safety of our campers, past, present and future. His book is a poignant reminder of the serious harm that can befall children at the hands of trusted adults. Please pray with us for Senator Brown and his family.

Forty years ago when Senator Brown was a camper, there was far less awareness and greater stigmatization around abuse, which kept many children suffering silently into their adulthoods. Sharing personal experience is more common and accepted now. These public disclosures can serve as an important reminder to all of us that child abuse is real and needs to be seriously addressed by any agency taking care of children.

We want to assure you that we take very deliberate steps toward reducing the risk of sexual and physical abuse at Camp Good News. These include:

1. Intensive pre-camp staff training in positive behavior management and conflict resolution.

2. Specific training, led by a psychologist and physician, about the signs of physical and sexual abuse and how to maintain appropriate boundaries with campers.

3. Criminal and sexual background checks on ALL volunteer and paid staff.

4. Ongoing training and close supervision of staff by head counselors and camp directors throughout the summer.

5. Zero-tolerance policy for staff misconduct including substance use, inappropriate boundaries, and inappropriate use of discipline.

6. Zero-tolerance policy for campers who bully, belittle or manipulate peers.

7. Smaller camper to counselor ratios for close supervision.

8. Counselors are not allowed to be alone with just one camper at any time.

9. We take camper disclosures of possible abuse very seriously and follow up immediately with parents and legal authorities if appropriate.

10. We comply with all child safety standards recommended by our accrediting organization, the American Camp Association (www.

While we continue to improve and enhance our efforts to provide kids a safe environment, we need your help. Please partner with us and discuss safety with your kids. We recommend:

1. Make sure your child has been educated in appropriate boundaries and “safe touch.” Such curriculums are usually taught in schools, but can be taught at home. Remind your child of personal safety skills before camp.

2. Get to know your child’s counselor and let them know about your child’s interests and special needs. Talk with the senior staff about any concerns you may have.

3. Encourage your child to let you know if anything has made them feel uncomfortable in any way. Notify the camp director if you receive a phone call, email or letter from your child that concerns you. If your child is a day camper, report any unusual behavior in the evening to the camp director immediately.

4. Call the camp director any time you have concerns while your child is at camp.

Camp Good News has been bringing state of the art camping in a Christian atmosphere for over 75 years. Despite this unfortunate circumstance, we will continue to provide life-changing summer experiences, with ever-more increasing vigilance and awareness about child safety issues.

Please do not hesitate to call us with any questions or concerns.

The 60 Minutes interview with Scott Brown will air Sunday at 7 p.m. on WBZ-TV and WBZ NewsRadio 1030.

  • Senator John Kerry Says Senator Scott Brown Disclosure About Sex Abuse Could Help OthersCBS Boston

    […] Kerry said Friday that Brown’s willingness to share personal details about his childhood could help other victims of abuse understand that they are not alone. Read: Cape Cod Camp Reaches Out To Sen. Brown About Sex Abuse Allegations […]

  • jerry

    I do not believe the senator scott brown 1st you dont wait 40 years to tell about this and publish it in a book and then not tell who the person is on top of it i, i think he is making this up just to sell his book , This man is in the public eye has the power to do something about it early in life and SAVE other kids from the same thing that happen to him i just do not buy it , i mean you just do not keep quit for 40 years and not tell a single person and then all of a suddon your writing a book about that , if it did happen im sorry for him but then it makes me mad he could have prevented other children from the same ordeal he went through if it was true , but i find it hard to believe him because you do not 1 come out and tell this in a book and then not report this guy for what he did 2nd if it was true then maybe other kids that was in the same camp as brown might come foward and tell as well ? im sorry if it did happen to him but i think he is not telling the truth i think he is using this to sell his book which i hope is not the case .

    • john

      jerry: your no expert. I tells me you didn’t vote for Scott Brown,, so stay out of this issue.

    • karen

      i totally agree with jerry. how can you call someone a hero when the guy who mollested him is still walking the streets. he should be ashamed of himself. and so should the media for helping him to push his book.

  • Cynic

    The whole article rings so hollow….It dances around the real nature of the problem with a bunch of Public Relations Mumble -Jumble.What happens when someone recognizes reality and effectivly does somethinhg about it with out all the posturing and speachmaking? Ask the Boy Scouts.

  • HLPeary

    Brown has an obligation to name the counselor who supposedly touched him inappropriately in the boys room. Otherwise, every counselor who was working at the camp at that time has unfair aspertions cast on them. That is not fair. I understand brown wants to sell books, but making these accusations without naming the perpetrator is unfair and unethical. Name the name or share the shame, mr. Brown!

  • Cynic

    OK,problem over,Cape Cod Camp has “Reached Out”……WTH does THAT mean.

  • Sen. Brown Says He Won’t Pursue Charges In Sex Abuse « CBS Boston

    […] has confirmed Sen. Brown attended Camp Good News. Read: Statement From Camp Good […]

  • emom


  • Christopher London

    Camp Good News was one of the finest experiences of my life. I am near the same age as Scott Brown and while I have no reason to doubt his story, I also have no reason to question the sincerity and integrity of the Brooks family and the character of Jane Brooks or Steve Brooks, both of whom in my experience and memory were people of the highest character. Likewise I would never hesitate to recommend CGN for the children of friends and family.

  • Ahh ha moment

    I was a counselor at Camp Good News for 2 summers and I have to say this accusation is not a surprise. While I was working, (about 10 years ago) there were rumors about one of the staff abusing a boy. When one of my co-workers confronted staff members about the issue, they not only flatly denied it, they squashed any hope of investigating the abuse. I think it is a great camp on a great site, but there was something strange stemming from leadership even then, and now it all makes sense. A shame, because I know that 99% of the people who have been there have had great experiences, including myself.

    • FormerCGNer

      Investigating, and it sounds like we may have crossed paths at that time.

      Please email me:

  • BJ

    Amen camp good news was the best time of my life in the late 80s and never once did I get the sense of abuse of anyone . Camp good news has been around along time and will continue helping many like myself get back on the right path

  • Christopher London

    Scott Brown’s disclosure about his alleged molestation at Camp Good News, a Christian Summer Camp founded by a WW II Hero W. Wyeth Willard and his wife Grace Willard, which continues to be run under the leadership of his salt of the earth extended family is simply not credible. I attended CGN for 6 summers, my younger brother for 9 summers, and a life long personal friend attended for 13 summers, around and during the same time period of Scott Brown. My contention is that this scenario truly never happened and Mr. Brown is a flat out LIAR. And I have a very strong thesis to back it up. Mr. Brown does not want to expose, name or prosecute his offender, did not tell his wife, mother or family first, nor did he run to authorities to help reign in a predator who may still be at large but instead ran to Harper Collins to tell his “story” on the eve of his re-election campaign. He nevertheless renders a vivid descriptio­n of “hippie” who resembles a Cheech and Chong character, Grateful Dead band member, a Deadhead, or an otherwise caricature of a radical liberal, circa the first Nixon Administra­tion. Only problem is that in my recollecti­on and the recollecti­on of most folks who attended the Camp (around that time) the counselors were drawn from Midwestern and Southern Christian colleges and were relatively clean cut. Truth is that lying under oath is a crime and it is awfully difficult to prosecute imaginary people. Scott Brown, ever the Cosmopolitan figure, knows this but he has a book to sell so with Julian Kaye like swagger, the American Gigolo begins his seduction of America’s victim class. According to a recent poll 67% of Cape Cod Today readers say Scott Brown is a liar about his sexual abuse claim.

  • Christopher London

    Fascinating, it was just reported that Internet Serial Pedophile Predator Ed Foulk got 248 year sentence, as he should have. BUT, a sitting Massachusetts U.S. Senator who alleges that was repeatedly sexually molested/abused at the hands of a Christian Camp Counselor does not want to subject this imaginary figure to prosecution because “Against All Odds” he made it to the U.S. Senate, got a Book Deal from Harper Collins and is now gaining public sympathy from America’s victim class, including many of his former political adversaries. Why spare anyone else the risk of harm at the hands of this Pedophile Predator when Scott Brown got all of the mileage he needed to out of this already?

  • Carolyn Seward

    I think Senator Brown is lying about this. He is using it to sell his book. He likes sensationalism. If it were true, he would want to expose the person and because he doesn’t – because he knows he’s lying – he says he doesn’t want to name names. I see this man as a real poseur – as he was campaigning, he wore the Carhartt jacket and drove a truck to SEEM like a regular guy. He’s all about putting on an act to gain an audience and interest and this allegation of sexual abuse is no different. He thinks if he says this abuse happened to him, he will get sympathy votes. Poor pathetic man. He poses for Playgirl in the 80’s to get noticed. He touts the accomplishments of his American Idol contestant daughter. Anything to get noticed. He comes off as smarmy and a liar. Gross! I’m embarrassed that he is a representative from my state. He’s all smoke and mirrors – no substance beneath the surface. But shame on you for making up this story about abuse and maligning a well-intentioned Christian summer camp for youngsters. I hope your political career suffers from this mis-step of yours and that people will wake up and see you for who your really are – an opportunist who will stop at nothing to get ahead.

    • mc

      you’re a dope. grow a heart.

  • Cape Camp Where Scott Brown Alleges Abuse Target Of Probe « CBS Boston

    […] (AP) — Prosecutors are taking a deeper look into a Cape Cod summer camp where U.S. Sen. Scott Brown says he was sexually abused as a child after another former camper came forward to say he was abused […]

  • Criminal Investigation At Cape Camp Linked To Scott Brown Sexual Abuse « CBS Boston

    […] (CBS) – Back in February, Senator Scott Brown revealed in his autobiography that he was sexually abused by a camp counselor on the Cape when he was 10 years […]

  • Person Commits Suicide At Cape Camp Linked To Scott Brown Abuse « CBS Boston

    […] has never confirmed the name of the camp, but Camp Good News has confirmed Brown was there when he was 10 years old. The camp also sent a letter of apology to […]

  • mc

    13 more come out accusing the camp, obviously they were covering their butts by “reaching out” to him.

    and obviously that letter to the parents is a big joke.

  • Joe Blow

    Reading this article and some of the comments is certainly a good insight into the mindset that has allowed Camp Good News to get away with a history of hypocrisy, incompetence, dishonesty, laziness, sexual impropriety, sexual abuse and arrogance for decades. Now that a SECOND person has committed suicide, there can be no doubt that there are serious problems and inconsistencies in the Camp Leadership.
    The first suicide (in my memory) was the suicide of Stewart Brooks (younger brother of the above mentioned Dr. Stephen Brooks) who also drove off camp in his own car to the Sandwich Beach, poured gasoline on himself and lit the match at the height of the 1985 Summer Camp Season.
    Even the most ardent defenders of the Camp seem unwilling or too stupid to remember the event and are at an utter loss to explain what would drive the innermost members of the camp (Chuck DeVita was a Camp Director for years despite being named as the “Janitor” by the Brooks family AFTER the suicide) to leave the camp (which is run by doctors) and go off and kill themselves in particularly disturbing fashions.
    Here is an explanation to consider (which is also true). The Camp Leadership has always been fake, hypocritical, incompetent, dishonest, lazy, sexually permissive and abusive of the children entrusted to their care and arrogant and contemptuous of those who in good faith tried to point out these errors in good faith for decades. The Camp has traded on the Founder’s service as a United States Marine Chaplain who served honorably and on the Camp’s false advertising of itself as a “Christian Institution”. The only reason the camp has survived so long without an earlier or worse disaster (DeVita as the Camp’s Riflery Instructor for years could have gone a “B” Movie shooting and killing spree during a Camp Season) is that as an advertised Christian camp, numerous young actual dedicated Christians came and worked hard for free (further enriching the Willards and the Brooks) and essentially “carried” the camp for decades.

  • dripable

    Your unquestionably correct with this one.

blog comments powered by Disqus
Taz Show
Download Weather App

Listen Live