Bill could bring Safe Haven Baby Boxes to Alabama

WAFF 48's Claudia Peppenhorst reporting
Published: May. 25, 2023 at 6:44 PM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - House Bill 473 could soon bring Safe Haven Baby boxes to Alabama and give parents another choice to surrender their babies.

“This option saves lives,” said Pam Stenzell with Safe Haven Baby Boxes.

Alabama law currently states that parents have 72 hours after birth to surrender their newborn to an emergency medical service provider. However, HB473 would allow parents 45 days to anonymously surrender their baby.

Bill sponsor State Representative Donna Givens said her goal is simple.

“To just save lives. Save a baby’s life,” Rep. Givens said.

The boxes are built into an exterior wall and are temperature controlled. Parents are able to access the box and place the baby inside. Once the box is opened, 911 is immediately notified.

Stenzell said these boxes provide another option for parents if they decide they do not want their baby after birth.

“The Safe Haven surrender is a last option but we want women to choose to safely surrender rather than have their baby in a dumpster or find them in a garbage bag,” Stenzell said.

Representative Givens said that if the bill passes, she already has a private donor that has agreed to pay for 10 Safe Haven Baby Boxes and those boxes will be placed in Alabama’s 10 biggest cities.

“This offers a way out for the mother or the daddy to place the baby safely in this box anonymously, no strings attached, just place the baby there,” Rep. Givens said.

The bill has already passed in the House and now heads to the Senate floor. Representative Givens says that even with the legislative session coming to a close soon, she is confident her bill will pass.

To learn more about Safe Haven Baby Boxers, click here.

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