After reading the article on the front page of Firehouse.com (http://www.firehouse.com/news/2001/3/27_baby.html) and hearing about proposed legislation in my home state of Maryland, I was curious about other states and cities that have a program that allows parents to drop off newborn babies at fire stations if they feel they cannot provide for the child. Are these programs working? Has anyone out there heard of a child dropped off at a fire station?
I also share Chief Georgevich and Inspector Bowers' opinions about the possible hazards. Not only may a child be left at a fire station that was unattended, but what happens when a child is dropped off? Does that piece of apparatus have to go out of service until a Social Services worker arrives to take custody? Is a medic unit going to be required to transport the child to the hospital? While I, too, think that anything that protects an innocent life is a good idea, I must wonder about the affect on the community should a 911 call be received requiring the response of that unit.
Peace and stay safe.
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Thread: Babies and Fire Stations
03-27-2001, 04:47 PM #1wannabe-EMTFirehouse.com Guest
Babies and Fire Stations
03-27-2001, 05:54 PM #2pfr172Firehouse.com Guest
In Texas, a mother can take their newborn child to either a fire station or an ER. They have to make sure that the paramedics recieve the child and not just drop it by the door. Then then paramedics will take the child to the ER.
03-27-2001, 06:16 PM #3Eng522ineFirehouse.com Guest
I will say this much, on paper it seems to be a great idea ... on paper. In a perfect world nobody would ever need to call the fire department and there would be thousands of firefighters, EMT's, and paramedics sitting around waiting for a baby to get dropped off but, as we know this is FAR from a perfect world. Maybe instead of taking entire crews out of service they should start putting "Night Drop-off Cribs" at hospitals? Personally, I feel the fire service, in general, has enough problems and issues related to performing our core job, that taking on a project like this is all but begging for a problem. Are you going to have fire or ambulance crews sitting around drawing straws to see who baby-sits and who gets to go to the call on apparatus without a full crew? Or maybe we should just start installing baby seats in the engines! Or God-forbid the distraught desperate mother drops her newborn off at a volunteer firehouse in the middle of a cold night, thinking that there was someone inside! IF... IF there was a clear concise plan that didn't compromise the safety of the community, the firefighters, or the babies ... it MIGHT be worth considering.
03-27-2001, 06:26 PM #4buddygammsFirehouse.com Guest
Here in Denver you can drop off a new born at a fire house or at a hospital. But it is the same as in Texas, you must give it to someone and not just leave it where someone will find it. It does work, but there are still mothers that just leave their babies where ever they feel like it. I just feel that it gives someone a chance and an option.
03-27-2001, 07:54 PM #5BFD847Firehouse.com Guest
Thats some unbelievable commitment from Eng522ine.
I don't think this particular law is in effect in MO. But we are a designated Safeplace at our departmetn. This is a place that a child of any age can come if there is any fear or threat to them for any reason. At this time one unit does go out of service to await an offical safeplace person to come and get the child. There is no talking or counseling the child. Only a phone call and make sure that are safe until someone picks them up. I believe that it does not matter how many duties we pick up there is nothing better than making sure a child is safe and cared for.
03-27-2001, 08:09 PM #6Dalmatian90Firehouse.com Guest
Oh Good Grief Folks,
Just how often are you going to be out of service for baby-drop offs?
If laws like this are implemented, it should be that they have to *hand* the baby to someone, not just leave at an unoccupied location (or even one where it is occupied but the crew is asleep for the night...)
Just treat it as a medical call at your station. Put the kid in your ambulance, or go unavailable and wait for one you call...then truck 'em to the ER and let social services handle it from there. No more impact on the community than any other medical call!
03-27-2001, 10:59 PM #7LtStickFirehouse.com Guest
Eng522ine brings up an interesting point. It wouldn't be a good idea to drop off a baby at a volunteer station if no one there. It would defeat the purpose of taking the child to a safe place. I know the Volunteer Station I run with hardly ever is a crew at the station after 10 or 11 pm unless there's something going on that would require a crew to man the station over night. So in this case this would be a bad idea. Just my two cents
03-28-2001, 01:58 AM #8cpr4uFirehouse.com Guest
How about controlling the problem instead of giving into the problem. Obviously the problem is a lack of protection or abstinance. How about instead of dropping your kid off at the Fire house, go to the Fire house for a condom. Or better yet, for every 10 gallons of gas you purchase you get a condom with it. I think you ought to educate and discipline the people instead of lightening thier burden and consequences.
03-28-2001, 06:20 AM #9FiyahFirehouse.com Guest
They advertise this in Texas, but they do not advocate that someone has to be there. There was a rash of abandoned babies all over Harris county. That was one of our concerns that they will drop these babies off at vol. fire stations where no one would be there.
03-28-2001, 09:00 AM #10FireRebelFirehouse.com Guest
I agree with you CPR4U...We are just enabling the problem...education, education....We in this country believe in second chances, rehabilitation, and forgiveness, which is all good, but when is it enough. Give me a break I find it sickening what some of these "people" decide to do with their "problems" by just dropping it in the corner of some cold dark alley, and now we as Emergency care providers, educators are now just to turn are backs and say ok...Give me a break...
[This message has been edited by FireRebel (edited 03-28-2001).]
03-28-2001, 07:04 PM #11Althea ForhanFirehouse.com Guest
If it keeps the mother from sticking it in a dumpster, I'm all for it.
03-29-2001, 12:59 AM #12cpr4uFirehouse.com Guest
Each person should be screened before they are issued a breeding permit. That would solve it all. Where I am at they have not addressed this issue. We do not have a problem with this right now. However there is a local high school here that is Nationally ranked in teen pregnancy. That just makes me SICK!
03-29-2001, 01:46 AM #13Eng522ineFirehouse.com Guest
cpr4u... "excuse me sir, but do you have a permit for those testicles?"
hehehehe.... sorry... I just couldn't resist!
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