Bill Could Keep Names of Parents Who Surrender Newborns Secret

Apr 25, 2017

Bill protects privacy of parents who surrender newborn. 

Legislation up for a vote in Michigan would protect the confidentiality of parents who give up their newborn by leaving the child at a hospital or with emergency responders.

The Safe Delivery of Newborns Law, enacted in 2000, allows parents to surrender a newborn who is no more than 72 hours old.

The bill scheduled for House approval Tuesday would keep intact birth certificate requirements if a birth occurs in an institution. But if a newborn is surrendered under the baby drop-off law, parents would be listed as "unknown" and the child as "Baby Doe."

Supporters say the legislation would guarantee anonymity to parents and stop them from leaving newborns in public restrooms and dumpsters.

The law has led to 175 newborns being surrendered.