Indiana police officer Bruce Faltynski and his wife Shelby were already in the process of adopting their oldest daughter Kaia from foster care when they got a call about a tiny infant that needed a set of parents. At only one day old, baby Myah had been left in a Safe Haven baby box.
Though adoption wasn’t new to Shelby Faltynski, a “baby box” certainly was. She told Fox News that she knew “nothing” about Safe Haven Baby Boxes until she received the call from the Department of Child Services. But now, she is certainly glad to know what they are and that they exist.
Indiana’s “Safe Haven Law” allows anyone to place a child in one of these boxes with zero penalty as long as the child is no older than 30 days. The Baby Box website says all the boxes are installed “in an exterior wall of a designated fire station or hospital.” They are also temperature-controlled and monitored so a child can be placed there safely and removed quickly. An interior door on the other side of the box allows medical professionals to access the baby so he or she can be removed and cared for.
There are Safe Haven boxes in ten states, with most being in Indiana. The Safe Haven website says that since the law went into effect and the boxes were placed, not a single abandoned infant has died in Indiana. This is definitely a great accomplishment for Safe Haven’s stated mission: to prevent illegal abandonment of newborns by raising awareness, offering a 24-hour hotline for mothers in crisis and offering the Safe Haven Baby Boxes as a last resort option for women who want to maintain complete anonymity.
In baby Myah’s case, being placed in the box so soon after birth may have saved her life. After she was retrieved from the Safe Haven box, doctors determined that she had suffered a stroke and placed her in the NICU.
The Faltynski’s are grateful to Myah’s birth mom for surrendering her child to a safe place. They are also grateful that thanks to daughter Kaia, they were already certified foster and adoptive parents and ready to welcome Myah into their home.