Just when it looked like the legislative season might come to a well-deserved end, except for a couple of bills that don’t seem to be going much of anywhere, along comes Wisconsin.
According to today’s WISPolitics, Rep Ellen Schutt (R-Clinton) and Joan Ballweg (R-Markesan) have introduced LRB-2961/1. The bill is not yet online, but according to the article, it amends the state’s Safe Haven law to permit municipalities to install Safe Haven Baby Boxes (again, quaintly referred to as “newborn safety devices”)” in hospitals, fire stations, and law enforcement agency buildings. It does not expand the current 72-hour age frame.
This is not the first baby box incursion in the state. As early as 2019 talk circulated about getting boxes there, but nothing came of it.
Wisconsin is limited Home Rule and Dillon Rule State, though, and In April the Chippewa Falls City Council voted 4-1 to permit the installation of a box in the city provided sponsors could be found. Alder. Chuck Hull voted against the measure, calling it “a feelgood thing”, with a lot of questions about non-existent safety standards as well as lack of assistance for mothers.
Hull said he believes putting a baby into someone’s arms when relinquishing the child is safer than relying on technology. He also said that when a child is dropped into a Safe Haven baby box instead of handed over to a first responder, the person who is dropping the child off loses an opportunity to get help from social services.
“It’s not that I’m against it. It’s just I think it’s kind of a ‘feel good’ thing right now because we really don’t know what would be on the other side of it even though we passed an ordinance. How do you make sure it’s safe?” he said.
Hull said he thinks the answer is educating would-be parents, not installing a baby device.
Wisconsin Doesn’t Need More Adoption Secrets!
Coinicidently, two companion bills to restore the right of all Wisconsin-born adoptees at the age of 18 to obtain their Original Birth Certificates without conditions or restrictions are currently running in the legislature. AB13 is in the House Children and Families Committee and S15 is n the Senate Mental Health, Substance Prevention, Children and Families Committee.
Let’s stop the War on Adoptees in Wisconsin. The Baby Box Bill is ripe for killing before it starts. Conctct Rep Schutt and Sen Ballweg, and especially your own Rep or Senator if you are in Wisconsin, and ask them to stop the insantity now. Tell them why adoptee rights are good; and baby boxes are bad. Meow!
“Newborn Safety Devices” my foot! Tell lawmakers that Safe Haven Baby Boxes are anti-adoptee, anti-family, and bad. Wisconsin doesn’t need any more adoption secrets or secret adoptees. Tell them to kill baby box bills. If they don’t, they will have to deal with me… Angelika, the Personal Assistant Cat