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Michigan Legislature passes bills creating 'baby boxes' for safe surrendering of newborns

Posted at 10:12 AM, Dec 21, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-21 10:12:05-05

A package of bills allowing specialized "baby boxes" for safe surrendering of newborns is heading to Governor Snyder's desk.

The bills passed with bipartisan votes in both the Michigan House and Senate. They modify the existing Safe Delivery of Newborns Law to allow the baby boxes and increase the current age of surrender from 72 hours to 30 days after birth.

The baby boxes will be climate-controlled, lock upon closing and trigger an alarm when a newborn is placed in them.

Michigan’s Safe Delivery law currently allows anonymous surrender of a newborn baby to an emergency service provider. The baby is then placed for adoption. A parent may change his/her mind and request that the infant be returned within 28 days of surrender.

Indiana, Ohio, and Pennsylvania have laws allowing similar baby boxes.