In Kern County, 63 babies have been safely surrendered since 2006
Last week, the Taft City Council joined the the Kern County Board of Supervisors and other Kern County to proclaim February as “Safely Surrendered Baby Awareness Month."
Representatives of the Kern County Department of Human Services were present at the Civic Center as for the presentation Safely Surrendered Baby Awareness month
The Safely Surrendered Baby Coalition leads the effort of educating Kern County residents about this law. This group, led by the Kern County Department of Human Services, is comprised of dedicated individuals representing the Department of Human Services, First 5 Kern, Kern County and Bakersfield City Fire Departments, local and regional hospitals, Kern County Public Health, Clinica Sierra Vista, and Bakersfield Pregnancy Center.
63 babies have been safely surrendered in Kern County since we began tracking those babies in 2006, including 6 in 2017.
For most people, the birth of a child is a happy occasion celebrated with family and friends. But for some women, childbirth becomes a crisis - and the decisions made following an infant’s birth can be a matter of life or death for the child. The Safely Surrendered Baby Law responds to the situation of newborn infant deaths due to abandonment in unsafe locations. First signed into law in January 2001, the Safely Surrendered Baby Law became permanent in January 2006. The law’s intent is to save the lives of newborn infants at risk of abandonment by encouraging parents or persons with lawful custody to safely surrender the infant within 72 hours of birth, with no questions asked. The law exists so that these infants will not be harmed because the mother abandons them, or fails to provide them with care, sometimes leaving them to die.