Issues

Chicago police investigating after ‘human fetus’ was found on sidewalk

Chicago police in the city’s Galewood neighborhood are investigating after a “human fetus” was reportedly found on a sidewalk on Saturday.

According to ABC 7, police were called to the 6400 block of W. Bloomingdale Ave at about 1:35 in the afternoon local time after the child was found. Police covered the baby with a blanket as they investigated the scene. While no other information about the child or circumstances is available at this time, this particular detail seems to indicate that the child was likely found deceased.

Every state has a Safe Haven Law allowing parents to anonymously place a newborn child with employees at designated safe locations, no questions asked. In Illinois, that law allows parents to surrender a baby aged newborn to 30 days post-birth at safe haven locations including hospitals, emergency care facilities, police stations, and staffed fire stations.

Due to the long waiting list of parents wishing to adopt a newborn, children who are relinguised under the Safe Haven Law are likely to find an adoptive family within 45 days.

“Abandonments are happening everywhere, but people are not aware of it because it’s not happening in their backyard,” said Monica Kelsey, a retired firefighter and medic who became the founder of Safe Haven Baby Boxes after learning at age 37 that she was abandoned two hours after her birth. “The fact that we have a safe haven law out there, that’s great that we’re saving infants, but for the ones we’re not saving, we need to figure out why.”

According to the National Safe Haven Alliance (NSHA), since the first Safe Haven law went into effect 4,653 babies have been saved. The NSHA website allows parents to search for a safe haven location in their area or call or text the 24/7 crisis hotline for help at 1-888-510-BABY.

NSHA also runs the Keeping Mothers and Infants Together Fund to help new mothers with temporary, short-term support.

Editor’s Note: This article will be updated as more information becomes available.

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