Ar. — In Arkansas, an amendment to a bill, which would expand the list of places people are allowed to leave unwanted babies, recently cleared a legislative panel.
The Safe Haven Act of 2001 already allows any parent to leave their infant at law enforcement agencies or medical providers within the first 30 days of the infant’s life without prosecution.
But Senate Bill 1-68 would amend that law to add fire stations that are manned 24 hours a day to the locations where babies can be given up.
It would also allow the use of a baby box.
The box would include an alarm system that notifies authorities if a baby is placed inside.
Sponsor of the bill Senator Cecile Bledsoe says the goal is to save more lives.
“The assumption is that we get the word out that we have the babies safe haven boxes that more women will be surrendering their babies instead of just like I said leaving them out, or putting them on a doorstep,” Bledsoe said.
Bledsoe says several babies have been abandoned in Arkansas.
The proposal is headed to the full Senate for a vote