June 25, 2021

Indiana’s Safe Haven Law

Criterion staff report

Indiana’s Safe Haven Law was passed in 2000, just one year after the first such law passed in Texas.

The law allows for the anonymous surrender of an infant up to 30 days old at designated locations with no worry of prosecution. Barring obvious abuse or neglect, no information is required of the parent surrendering the child.

The law was expanded in 2017 to apply to baby boxes, and again in 2018 to include baby boxes at fire stations.

The law was most recently expanded in March to allow a baby box to be installed at an Emergency Medical Station (EMS) that is staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, as well as meets other particular requirements.

The modification also allows parents to legally relinquish custody of their newborn to medical staff after the baby is delivered in a health care facility, or to call 911 and surrender their newborn to EMS staff. †

 

Related story: Safe Haven Baby Boxes save lives, but are about ‘so much more than the box’

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