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50th baby saved thanks to ‘safe haven’ boxes in U.S.

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ACI Prensa Staff, Jun 28, 2024 / 08:00 am (CNA).

The Safe Haven Baby Box organization is celebrating saving a baby who was safely dropped off last week at a fire station in Kentucky.

With the rescue of this baby, the U.S.-based pro-life organization counts a total of 50 newborns saved since the first safe haven box was installed in 2015. This is the first time that this particular box, which was just installed on April 4, has been used.

The Kentucky Safe Infants Act allows parents to drop off newborns under 30 days old at a police station, fire station, hospital, or place of worship that has a baby box without fear of being criminally prosecuted.

The device resembles a safe that, once closed, cannot be opened from the outside, but only from the inside wall of the building and by medical personnel. The box is monitored 24 hours a day and has temperature control and an alarm.

When a child is placed inside, a silent alarm is activated and emergency personnel respond within minutes. The baby receives medical care and is then put up for adoption. To date, these boxes are available in 17 states.

The 50th baby

Montgomery County, Kentucky, Fire Capt. Zachary Adams reported that on June 17, “we were honored and blessed to have a baby surrendered” at their station. “The baby boy was surrendered and appeared to be in good health and was transported to our local hospital,” he said.

“We want to thank Gateway Right to Life for making this possible and Montgomery County Kiwanis for 100% funding of this project! There aren’t words to express how happy we are to be part of this opportunity! Words can’t describe it. We weren’t expecting this. I truthfully thought the box would never be used,” Adams said.

Safe haven baby boxes are designed to help parents in a crisis situation give up their children anonymously if they wish, in accordance with their state’s safe haven laws.

The organization’s founder, Monica Kelsey, noted that these boxes are a “last resort” option for mothers and offer an alternative to child abandonment.

“Thank you for keeping your child safe, for entrusting the Montgomery County Fire Department to take it from here. Your baby is healthy, your baby is safe,” Kelsey told the unknown mother during a press conference, according to the pro-life site Live Action.

She also encouraged the mother to call her organization if she needs help, resources, or just someone to talk to.

Kelsey reiterated her thanks and noted that the baby would soon be placed for adoption. According to WKYT, the parent of the baby has 30 days to reverse his or her decision to surrender the child.

“Our program offers hope to mothers in crisis. We are so grateful this mother trusted us to protect her infant as well as her identity. It is a selfless act and we are proud of the birth mother,” she said.

This story was first published by ACI Prensa, CNA’s Spanish-language news partner. It has been translated and adapted by CNA.


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