Newborn Safely Surrendered at Norwalk Hospital

A newborn boy has been surrendered at a Norwalk hospital as part of the Safe Surrender program, Los Angeles County Supervisor Don Knabe announced this morning.

The baby boy was safely surrendered yesterday at Coast Plaza Doctor’s Hospital in Norwalk. An unidentified woman brought the baby to the emergency room, saying the baby was born at home and that his mother had asked the woman to surrender him to the hospital. This incident is the third Safe Surrender in Los Angeles County in 2006. The first two surrenders occurred on the same day last month when two newborns were dropped off at hospitals in Long Beach and Glendora.

The Safe Surrender Program in Los Angeles County was initiated by Supervisor Knabe and approved unanimously by the Board of Supervisors in June of 2002. It allows someone to surrender an infant that is no more than three days old, as long as the infant shows no signs of abuse.

The first year the program went into effect, no surrenders were reported in Los Angeles County. That same year, 11 newborns were discovered abandoned and deceased. By 2005, the number of Safe Surrenders climbed to 8 cases and the number of abandoned deceased infants dropped to 4. The newborn handed over at the Norwalk hospital yesterday is the 39 th safely surrendered baby since the program started.

This case could have ended in tragedy, but because of the Safe Surrender program, this baby boy has a long life ahead of him, said Supervisor Knabe. I am happy this mother made the right choice for her baby.