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Oxford Baby Box project

Published: May. 3, 2022 at 9:24 PM CDT
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OXFORD, Ala. (WBRC) - Safe Haven Baby Boxes are used to prevent the illegal abandonment of a newborn and offer a safe place for a mother-in-crisis to leave her infant.

Madison Scott, a senior at Oxford High School is working to bring this option to Calhoun County.

Alabama’s Safe Haven law allows parents to surrender their babies to a fire station or local hospital.

The Safe Haven Baby Box is installed into the wall of a fire station and it locks from the outside after a baby is placed inside. Once it closes, a series of alarms let first responders know to check the box.

According to the organization, 18 babies have been surrendered inside the Baby Boxes since the first one was installed in 2016. Safe Haven Baby Boxes are currently available in Indiana, Ohio, Arkansas, Florida, Kentucky and New Mexico.

Now, Scott is working to add Alabama to the list. After learning more than 10,000 babies are abandoned each year she wanted to provide a safer option for parents in distress.

Scott dedicated her Girl Scout Gold Award to saving the lives of neglected and abused babies. Now a project has become a mission. She spent over 80 hours researching and meeting with leaders in Oxford to bring the state’s first Safe Haven Baby Box.

Last week, she found out she had earned the Gold Award which is the highest honor for a Girls Scout. She will continue to work with leaders in Oxford to determine a timeline and location for the baby box.

If you need help finding a Safe Haven location or to speak to a licensed counselor, call the National Safe Haven crisis hotline at 1-866-99BABY1.

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