By Ann Tatko-Peterson
Wednesday, November 19th, 2008 at 2:07 pm in Health & Safety.
Nebraska is on the verge of approving a 30-day age limit in the state’s safe-haven law. The limit became necessary after dozens of parents and relatives started dropping off tweens and teens at hospitals. Safe-haven laws were designed to protect newborns from being discarded in trash bins and the like, but Nebraska failed to cap the age of these children and since then, 35 — some from out-of-state — have been abandoned under the law.
Child experts are worried about the emotional effect this will have on children aware of what’s happening. Clearly, that’s an issue. So is being left in homes where the parents and guardians don’t want them. The possibility for abuse and neglect is alarming. At least legislators seem to be aware of this and plan to address improving resources for trouble, older youths in a legislative session in January.