For those of you who didn’t know, Hospitality Health ER in Longview and Tyler serve as safe havens for parents to leave their newborns. Infant abandonment may sound like something that only happens in a movie or TV show, like Popeye or This is Us. But it happens more than you think. In fact, there were 22 babies abandoned in Texas alone in 2016. What’s worse is that these 22 babies were not dropped off at a safe haven. Perhaps the parents didn’t know they had other options.
A Safe and Legal Option for the Community: Hospitality Health ER in Longview and Tyler
After a newborn girl was abandoned inside a north Austin dumpster, Hospitality Health ER and other local organizations are reminding surrounding communities about safe and legal options to drop off newborns. The Texas Safe Haven Law or Baby Moses Law protects parents who are unable to care for their baby as long as the infant is no more than 60 days old and dropped off unharmed at a designated safe place. Even the parents’ identities are protected. Designated safe places include hospitals, freestanding emergency medical care facilities, fire stations, or emergency medical services (EMS) stations.
Jill Shipp and Dr. Jeffrey Beers of Hospitality Health ER in Longview and Tyler are focused on educating their local communities about these options available for the scared or struggling parent:
“We want parents to know that it’s better to leave their baby where they can get medical treatment and expert care if needed,” said Dr. Beers, “And they don’t have to worry about getting in trouble with the law as long as the baby is not harmed.”
We encourage you to inform your community and circles that this option exists—you can potentially save a life.