CARMEL, Ind. — Over the last week two babies have been surrendered at Safe Haven Baby Boxes in Indiana, the latest one at Carmel Fire Department Station #45.
Fire department officials said that a baby boy was dropped off Tuesday morning, and that firefighters got to the box less than a minute after the alarm went off.
“A big smile on my face to hear that the system worked flawlessly,” said Carmel Fire Chief David Haboush
The baby is now at the hospital being checked out. Haboush added that he is nice and healthy thanks to the courage of his mother.
The Safe Haven Baby Box was installed at Carmel’s Station #45 in December of 2018 and this marks the first time a child has been surrendered at the location.
“We dedicated the box because it was late December and cold. I remember exactly what I said that day, ‘while we hope that we never have to use this box, we are glad that it is there as a safe alternative for mothers who are in crisis.’ And that exactly played out yesterday through this box,” said Haboush. “While we are excited the box was used as an alternative we realize there is a family and a mother in crisis. And we are proud that that mother was able to utilize this box in a safe manner to get care for this little baby boy.”
Carmel Fire Department Division Chief of Community Relations John Moriarty went over how firefighters handle a baby when surrendered to Station #45’s Safe Haven Baby Box in the video below.
There are multiple alarms once a child is placed in the box and it alerts dispatch right away. It will send emergency responders to the box even if no one is at the fire station. There’s also a backup generator if the power goes out.
This makes 17 babies that have been placed in Safe Haven Baby Boxes across the U.S. since 2016, with more than a hundred women having surrendered babies to workers at Safe Haven sites.
Just last year, Indiana added on to its Safe Haven laws. Parents in crisis can now remain anonymous while calling 911 to give up custody of a baby. They just have to safely wait for help to come.
Firefighters test the baby boxes on a weekly basis to ensure they are properly working.
There are more than 100 Safe Haven Baby Boxes across the state of Indiana.