The Kansas City Police Department is host to the launch of an awareness campaign to help fight the abandonment of newborn babies. Members of the Kansas City area health care community, law enforcement, fire departments and child advocacy groups are working together to promote Safe Haven For Newborns (view flyers). The newly formed coaltion brings awareness to the public about state laws that allow a healthy and unharmed newborn baby (age specifications determined by state) to be left in the hands of staff at a fire station, ambulance station, police station or hospital without fear of prosecution.
Debby Howland of the Kansas City Child Abuse Roundtable Coalition says the campaign is aimed at letting people know they have an alternative to abandoning a baby or keeping it in an abusive home.
Audio: Debby Howland on Public Awareness
Audio: Debby Howland on Missouri’s Law
Howland says part of the coalition’s goal is to ensure that all workers at Safe Haven locations understand the law no matter whether it’s an urban or rural area. A parent may need assistance in any area of the state and the law covers all of them.
Audio: Debby Howland on State Wide Effort
The Kansas City Child Abuse Roundtable Coalition is using Florida as an example how to run a successful program. In the last 10 years that Florida law has been in place, there have been 148 babies saved by the Safe Haven law there. For specific information on the laws in Missouri view the Safe Place for Newborns Act or dial either 2-1-1 or 866-320-5764.