The Racine Fire Department is encouraging all citizens of the City of Racine to familiarize themselves with Newborn Safe Haven laws (Wis. Admin. Code § DCF 39.10). According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) the highest risk for infant homicide is on the day of birth.
Newborn Safe Haven laws were created to prevent harm.
According to the National Safe Haven Alliance, 4,422 babies have been “saved to date” in the US. In all 50 states and Puerto Rico, there are enacted Safe Haven laws to address infant abandonment and endangerment.
This legislation allows people to utilize a safe haven site without receiving prosecution. This law offers protection for both infants and parents.
The law allows birth parents to leave their newborn child, anonymously and without fear of prosecution, so long as the baby is unharmed and under 72 hours old.
Designated safe havens
Designated safe havens are hospitals, law enforcement agencies and fire stations. Staff must be on-site at the time an infant is left.
They may leave them with a police officer, 911 emergency medical staff person or hospital staff members.
Knowing your rights
Parents do not have to provide their name and address to the professional accepting the baby, unless:
- The baby has been harmed
- You are being forced by someone to give up the baby
- The baby is more than 3 days old
Learn more about Safe Haven laws
Further resources and education tools provided by the Racine Police Department are:
Stay up to date with emergency, crime and police encounters. The Racine County Eye and Kenosha Lens is your source for local news that serves our diverse communities. Subscribe today and never miss a beat. Visit our Police & Fire section to read more.