Fire Station’s Baby Box Saves Newborn in Arkansas

A newborn infant, less than 24 hours old, was safely surrendered at a Safe Haven Baby Box located at Fire Station 3 in Benton, Arkansas, on May 9, according to the Benton Fire Department.

In all 50 states, Safe Haven Laws allow parents who may not be able to care for their child to safely place him or her in the care of those at a fire station, hospital, or police station with 24-7 employees within a certain amount of time after birth.

Arkansas state law additionally offers parents the option to place their child in a designated safety device, also known as “baby boxes,” where emergency responders or nursing staff can receive the infant. When a child is placed inside the box, an alarm is triggered, alerting emergency responders for immediate assistance.

Matt Thibault, spokesperson for the City of Benton, provided details of the incident, stating, “The alarm sounded on the Safe Haven Baby Box located outside the building. First responders investigated and found that a newborn baby, less than 24 hours old, had been placed inside the box.”

After being brought to Arkansas Children’s Hospital and checked out by medical professionals, public officials took the baby into custody.

Safe Haven Baby Box is an organization that offers temperature-controlled monitored boxes where parents can anonymously surrender their infants in a safe manner.

Benton Fire Chief Russ Evans expressed his gratitude and admiration for the parent who made this decision. He stated, “The baby was healthy and well cared for, obviously loved. It is my understanding that the mother traveled from out of state to surrender her baby as her state does not offer this anonymous and safe option.”

Evans also addressed the mother directly, saying, “To the mother, thank you for your decision and for allowing the Benton Fire Department to be a part of your journey. Please know your child is healthy and stunningly handsome. God bless you.”

Monica Kelsey, CEO and Founder of the Safe Haven Baby Box Organization, commended the parent’s courageous choice. She expressed her gratitude, stating, “I am so thankful this parent chose a safe option for their child. We may never know the reason they used this baby box, but we do know how much they loved their baby.”

Safe Haven Laws have saved over 4,500 infant lives nationwide over the past two decades, providing a crucial avenue for parents who may find themselves in difficult situations and in need of a safe and anonymous option to ensure their child’s well-being.

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