Georgia’s Safe Haven Law spotlighted after baby found in the woods

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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Medical professionals are reaching out to the community to remind everyone there is a Safe Haven Law in Georgia.

That is after disturbing video was released this week by the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office which showed officers finding a newborn baby in a plastic bag in the woods. The infant, now called Baby India, is being cared for by Social Services.

“The law was created to prevent babies from being dropped on the door step or dumpsters babies is how they used to call it,” says Meredith Scaccia who is the Director of Women’s and Children’s Services at St. Joseph’s Candler.

Scaccia says when the video was release this week “a lot of people may have thought how could anyone do that but I kind of went the other way and felt very sorry that perhaps this mom didn’t know about the law and didn’t know there were places that were safe and that she could turn to.”

The Safe Haven Law says that any woman who briings an infant to a designated “safe” place which includes medical facilities like Candler and public facilities like police or fire stations will not be prosecuted.

“Moms may have a reason. We don’t know that reason. We’re not here to judge that reason,” says Scaccia. “There may be moms who just are not financially able to care for a baby. There may be moms who are in a battered situation there or who were were raped or treated badly or who have mental issues.

“So the law is really there to be able to support those moms, and support the baby, and make sure that we don’t have babies left in the woods.”

Scaccia hopes the information helps another mom out there right now who may be struggling.

“We would hope that by sharing that information that we don’t have any more moms dispose of their infants in any manner and be able to get them to the right location that’s safe for the baby,” she said.

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