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DCF Highlights Baby Safe Havens Day in Connecticut


DCF Highlights 'Baby Safe Havens Day' in Connecticut
No Blame, No Shame, No Questions Asked; 57 Newborns Placed for Adoption Since 2001

(Hartford) - Department of Children and Families (DCF) Commissioner Jodi Hill-Lilly reminded residents of the state's Safe Havens Act for Newborns which gives birth parents in distress an alternative solution to one that may be unsafe or harmful to their infant child. 
Observed annually during Child Abuse Prevention Month, April 4 is officially recognized as Safe Havens Awareness Day in Connecticut.  
Passed in 2000, the law allows a parent, who does not believe they can care for their newborn, to voluntarily give up custody of an infant age 30 days or younger to the staff of an emergency room and remain anonymous. DCF will then place the baby in a pre-approved adoptive home. 

"We know it takes a lot of courage for a parent who is struggling to seek help," said Commissioner Hill-Lilly. "If you are a parent of a newborn and feel like you have nowhere to turn, please know that Safe Havens allows you to seek that help without any stigma attached. No Blame, No Shame and No Questions Asked."
Adoptive parents of "Adam" said, "When we were chosen to be Adam's adoptive parents, our hearts filled with joy and excitement. As lucky parents of a Safe Havens baby, we want to tell you that you don't have to be ashamed or scared of using the Safe Havens Law. This law will protect your baby, and he or she will be loved, safe and well cared for."

Each year, DCF educates the public on an ongoing basis about the existence of the Safe Haven law because every year there emerges a new group of parents who may not have been exposed to earlier messages about the law. Since 2001, a total of 57 babies have been given up to hospitals around Connecticut through the Safe Havens Act. That number includes two newborns in 2024. 


Commissioner Hill-Lilly stated, "We are asking everyone – our media partners, hospital personnel, and all community members – to help spread the word that this alternative exists, and it saves lives."

Here is how Connecticut’s Safe Havens Act works:
•         The law enables a parent to bring an infant 30 days or younger to a hospital emergency room and avoid prosecution for abandonment.
•         The law states that parents who do not harm their newborn cannot be criminally charged with abandonment if they bring their baby to a safe place.
•         A nurse will ask the parent for their name and for medical information on the infant and parent. The parent does not have to provide that information.
•         DCF will obtain custody and place the baby with a family who is already licensed and intends to adopt the baby. In one instance, a Safe Haven baby was placed into a permanent home of a relative.
•         DCF will provide support to the baby’s new family while terminating the biological parent’s parental rights so that the adoption can become final.
•         Connecticut law requires that a child can only be placed by DCF with a person licensed to provide foster or adoptive care.
Interested in becoming a foster or adoptive parent? Please contact 1-888-KID-HERO and visit CT Fosters: Foster Care & Adoption Services.
Learn more about Connecticut's Safe Havens Act for Newborns.