Guide for California S Safe Surrender Law

Guide for California S Safe Surrender Law


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What is the “Safe Surrender” law?

It’s a law that allows a distressed parent to “safely” surrender their baby confidentially without fear of arrest orprosecution for abandonment.

How does this law work?

A distressed parent who is unable or unwilling to care for their newborn baby can legally, confidentially, and safelysurrender their baby within 3 days of birth. The baby must be taken to any hospital emergency room or fire station and left withan employee there. A bracelet will be placed on the baby for identification. A matching bracelet will be given to theparent. The bracelet will help connect the parent to the baby if the parent wants the baby back.

Where can a parent surrender their baby?

A baby may be “safely” surrendered at any hospital emergency department orfire station.

Does a parent have to give information to the people taking the baby?

Nothing is required. However, hospital personnel will attempt to give the parent a medical informationquestionnaire that is designed to gather family medical history. This could be very useful in caring for the child, butit is the parent’s choice to complete it.

What happens to the baby after it’s “safely” surrendered?

The baby will be examined and given medical treatment, if needed. Then the child will be placed in a foster or pre-adoptivehome.

Can a parent change their mind after surrendering their baby?

Under the law, a parent has at least 14 days to claim the baby. The parent(s) may take the bracelet back to thehospital. Hospital personnel will provide information about the baby.

Can a mother seek medical attention?

If the mother does have medical complications after the surrender of her child, she should return to the samehospital E.R. department to be examined.

Approx. how many babies have been “safely” surrendered since the law went into effect in 2001?

More than 300 babies have been “safely” surrendered in the state of California.

Why does California have a “Safe - Surrender” law?

The purpose of the “Safe Surrender” law is to protect newborn babies from being hurt or killed because they wereabandoned or thrown-away.

Garden of Angels Inc. ~ Safe Surrender for Newborns

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