A Safe Alternative for Your Child
Heather Miller at WGNO reports that a Baton Rouge mother who said she was no longer able to care for her infant gave her baby to an employee at a Baton Rouge-area fire station yesterday under the state’s Safe Haven law.
The state Department of Child and Family Services said in a news release that fire department personnel took the baby to Woman’s Hospital in Baton Rouge. The baby was in good health (WGNO).
Louisiana’s Safe Haven law allows children up to 60 days old to be relinquished to an employee at a designated emergency care facility. These include any licensed hospital, public health unit, emergency medical service provider, medical clinic, fire or police station, pregnancy crisis center or child advocacy center (WGNO).
Since 2004, 44 infants have been relinquished in Louisiana using the Safe Haven law, most recently an infant in the Covington area last October (WGNO).
“This mother made a very difficult decision today and I commend her for it,” said DCFS Secretary Marketa Garner Walters. “Instead of abandoning her baby, she placed the child in the arms of someone who will ensure his safety. This underscores the importance of Louisiana’s Safe Haven law. It saves lives” (WGNO).
The baby will be placed with a foster family.
Louisiana’s Department of Children & Family Services offers an alternative if you are no longer to care for your child and are considering abandoning it. Louisiana’s Safe Haven Law provides a safe place for your child. If you are unable to care for your baby and the baby’s well-being is in danger, you can bring the newborn up to 60 days old to an emergency designated facility or Safe Haven site. By leaving the baby in the care of an employee at a Safe Haven facility, parents can give up custody of the newborn with no questions asked (DCFS).
Parents who would like to give up custody of their child, but whose child is not in immediate danger of harm, are encouraged to use a planned, permanent adoption through an adoption agency that accounts for medical and genetic history (DCFS).
According to the Department of Children & Family Services, the baby will be brought to the nearest medical facility for a health assessment and to receive any necessary medical care.
DCFS will find a family to care for the baby, and will begin proceedings to obtain custody of the child and safely and legally place the baby in a permanent adoptive family.
If you or a family member are facing legal difficulties, please call us at 504-522-7260. We offer free initial consultations with our clients in mind.