About the Baby Safe Surrender Program

Some parents of newborns can find themselves in difficult circumstances. Sadly, babies are sometimes harmed or abandoned by parents who feel that they’re not ready or able to raise a child, or don’t know there are other options. Many of these mothers or fathers are afraid and don’t know where to turn for help.

This is why California has a Safely Surrendered Baby Law, which gives parents or guardians the choice to legally and safely surrender their baby at any hospital or fire station in Los Angeles County, no questions asked.

What is the Safely Surrendered Baby Law? [+][-]
The state of California passed the Safely Surrendered Baby Law to give parents or guardians the choice to legally and safely leave a baby three days old or younger with an employee at any Los Angeles County hospital or fire station, no questions asked. The parent or guardian may surrender the baby without fear of arrest or prosecution for child abandonment.If you have questions about the law or how to safely surrender a baby, please see the Frequently Asked Questions. For more information about the law itself, please see the legislation passed on August 1, 2003 which strengthened the existing Safely Surrendered Baby Law.
How many babies have been safely surrendered in Los Angeles County? [+][-]
As of 2014, there have been 142 babies safely surrendered in Los Angeles County. These children were welcomed into loving homes and are being raised by devoted families.
Year Safe
Surrenders
Abandonments
1999 0 6 (6 of whom died)
2000 0 3 (3 of whom died)
2001 0 14 (11 of whom died)
2002 10 13 (8 of whom died)
2003 8 8 (7 of whom died)
2004 10 8 (7 of whom died)
2005 8 4 (4 of whom died)
2006 11 7 (5 of whom died)
2007 15 3 (3 of whom died)
2008 7 7 (2 of whom died)
2009 7 3 (2 of whom died)
2010 7 3 (3 of whom died)
2011 5 1 (1 of whom died)
2012 12 2 (2 of whom died)
2013 6 1 (1 of whom died)
2014 11 2
2015 18 4

 

More Information

For more information about the children that have been surrendered since the Safely Surrendered Baby law was passed, please see the most recent report from the Inter-Agency Council on Child Abuse and Neglect.

Please click here to view or print the Baby Safe Surrender brochures, posters, logos and additional materials in the Campaign Materials section.

About the Safe Haven Task Force [+][-]
In 2002, a task force was created under the guidance of the Children’s Planning Council to address newborn abandonment and to develop a strategic plan to prevent this tragedy.Los Angeles County has worked hard to ensure that the Safely Surrendered Baby Law prevents babies from being abandoned. We’re happy to report that this law is doing exactly what it was designed to do: save the lives of innocent babies.
How Can I Get More Information? [+][-]
For more information on Los Angeles County’s Baby Safe Surrender program, contact Cathy Walsh of ICAN by calling (626) 258-2059, or email her at walshca@dcfs.lacounty.gov