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Colorado Safe Haven for Newborns is a nonprofit organization dedicated to preventing the abandonment of newborn babies by informing the community about the Safe Haven law and inspiring a parent in crisis to use it.
Our vision is to protect desperate parents, unwanted newborns and the community from the tragedy of abandoned babies through education about the Colorado Safe Haven law.
According to a 1998 survey by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 105 newborns were reported as abandoned in public places that year. However, experts estimate that at least twice as many newborns were abandoned but never discovered. Based upon recorded infant abandonment events, the most common profile for the mother is a 19-yr-old college student with no history of substance abuse or criminal activity. These desperate mothers isolate themselves, deny their pregnancies, and commit an unthinkable crime because they believe they have no alternative.
In April 2000, The Colorado General Assembly passed the Colorado Safe Haven for Newborns law. Colorado criminal law states that abandoning a baby is punishable by up to 26 years in prison. The Safe Haven law provides an affirmative defense against prosecution if a parent relinquishes the baby, unharmed, at a hospital or fire station within 72 hours after birth.
During a two-week period in July 2004, three abandoned babies were found in the Denver area. All of the babies were dead. These mothers, in crisis, were unaware of the Safe Haven law. In November 2004, a group of concerned citizens formed the Colorado Safe Haven for Newborns organization to promote public awareness of the law.
Colorado Safe Haven for Newborns wants to ensure that every newborn baby is placed in a safe environment, that parents are free from a lifetime of guilt and incarceration, and that the community is free from the emotional and financial expense wrought by the tragedy of infant abandonment. It is also gratifying to know that an unwanted baby will fulfill the hopes of a family waiting to adopt a child.
Colorado Safe Haven for Newborns is an IRS 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.