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Thread: Nebraska's Safe Haven Law

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    Nebraska's Safe Haven Law

    I feel like there might have been a thread on this sometime back, but didn't see it in a search. And since it's in the news again...

    Neb. parents rush to leave kids before law changes

    LINCOLN, Neb. – The mother was running out of more than patience when she abandoned her 18-year-old daughter at a hospital over the weekend under Nebraska's safe-haven law. She was also running out of time: She knew that state lawmakers would soon meet in a special session to amend the ill-fated law so that it would apply to newborns only.

    "Where am I going to get help if they change the law?" said the mother, who lives in Lincoln and asked to not be identified by name to protect her adopted child.

    To the state's surprise and embarrassment, more than half of the 31 children legally abandoned under the safe-haven law since it took effect in mid-July have been teenagers.

    But state officials may have inadvertently made things worse with their hesitant response to the problem: The number of drop-offs has almost tripled to about three a week since Gov. Dave Heineman announced on Oct. 29 that lawmakers would rewrite the law.

    With legislators set to convene on Friday, weary parents like the Lincoln mother have been racing to drop off their children while they still can.

    The safe-haven law was intended to save "Dumpster babies" by allowing desperate young mothers to abandon their newborns at a hospital without fear of prosecution. But lawmakers could not agree on an age limit, and the law as passed uses only the word "child."

    All states have safe-haven laws, but in every state but Nebraska, the law applies to infants only.
    Full text of article here: Neb. parents rush to leave kids before law changes - Yahoo! News

    Seems to me like a good idea - a law intended to help children whose parents would sooner leave them in a backalley or garbage can than attempt to take care of them - completely undone by semantics. While part of me does genuinely feel sympathy for parents of children/teens who are unmanageable and destined to be nothing more than delinquents and drains on society, another part of me can't help but think that anyone who would interpret a law of this type, even with the vague term "child", to mean 15+ year olds wasn't too keen on parenting to begin with. And even the most badly behaved teenager has to feel rejected when his/her parents do something like this, which certainly isn't going to help shape him/her into a quality individual.

    So what do you think?
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    Re: Nebraska's Safe Haven Law

    It is really sad that a law made to save newborn babies is being used to get out of parenting teens at a time they need those parents the most. It is normal for teens to rebel as they try to find themselves as they approach adulthood. Unless the teen needs medical help that the family can't provide, there is no reason for a teen to be abandoned just because they are having a difficult time.

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    Re: Nebraska's Safe Haven Law

    While the idea of saving a newborn is a rather noble one, even if the means of getting said newborn could be controversial, trying to interpret the term "child" as anything above the age of 12 is ridiculous.

    There is a big difference between an abandoned newborn and an abandoned teenager. The teen has ways of finding where the parents went to, and can also survive on their own for a short period of time if need be.

    But the child is not at fault. If the parent is stupid enough to try to abandon a late teenager, then, as Gren said, the parents really don;t know how to parent.
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    Re: Nebraska's Safe Haven Law

    It's a stupid law that needs to be editted immediately. I don't know why it's taking so long, people have left their 15, 16 year old children at public places, which I find ridiculous to begin with. How can anyone's kid really be that bad? It gives bad parents an option of dumping their kids good or bad onto the streets, they need to be held accountable for that kind of neglect. The state of the Nebraska will bring you in, sure, but that doesn't mean shit, they won't treat the child any better, they'll just give them the bare essentials and kick them out when they're 18. No teen should have to go through that.

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    Re: Nebraska's Safe Haven Law

    How can anyone's kid really be that bad?
    I don't know.... I've seen it. Reeaallly intolerable kids\teens for whatever reason. I've also seen confused and drained parents who've tried desperately to figure out where they went wrong.
    However, a parent who would abandon a child? Is not a good parent! Facilitate the child if need be. There are youth mental health\correctional facilities in nebraska arent there? I don't see why parents can't see to it that their child is being saught after and HELPED.

    As a mother, I think to EVER think of your child as a hopeless drain on society.... is putrid. Even if my child ended up to be on death row, for mass murder. I would like to hope maybe, in their cell, that they may be learnig. Feeling remorse. I would at least have hope for them, for their soul, for sanity in their last moments. Even if I can't save them or change them. I think I will always hope. How you can lose hope in someone you love, esspecially a young someone.... is beyond me.
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    Re: Nebraska's Safe Haven Law

    The mother was running out of more than patience when she abandoned her 18-year-old daughter at a hospital over the weekend under Nebraska's safe-haven law.
    How in the hell does anyone abandon an 18-year-old? Is this girl a retard? Also the law say CHILD, when your 18 your an adult. So how would she be covered under this law? I guess some ppl just shouldn't re-produce.

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    Re: Nebraska's Safe Haven Law

    Quote Originally Posted by Miroku4444 View Post
    How in the hell does anyone abandon an 18-year-old? Is this girl a retard? Also the law say CHILD, when your 18 your an adult. So how would she be covered under this law? I guess some ppl just shouldn't re-produce.
    She wasn't covered under the law, they made her take her daughter back when she tried to leave her. Sorry, the article was pretty long so I didn't post the whole thing. But the mother did claim the girl had mental problems, and that she had exhausted all other avenues for help with her. I think the woman adopted the girl too, it says the girl had "psychological scars from being abused and left alone with her dead biological mother for a week." So this so-called mother adopts a child with obvious psychological issues, and now that she's decided that she can't handle her, wants to dump her on the state under a law that even by the loosest interpretation would not include 18 year olds. A real winner, this one.
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    Re: Nebraska's Safe Haven Law

    Its sad but true, if this law had been mis-written and passed back when I was 17, I'd bet my father would have tried to convince me to go with him to Nebraska for a "corn picking" vacation.

    (Every joke has some truth)

    Anyway, as for the law, it is a good idea as gren said if these people care no more than to have the child and throw it in the garbage/back alley. However, that's as far as it goes. If your teen is too unruly for you to handle, there is the clean way to abandon them without stigma, military school. XD

    I think this law should should stay as is but come with a balancer though, unless the child is a new born, before you give up a child to the state you have to pay out of your own pocket to get yourself "fixed". Get those tubes on the slides tied, and take those bullets out of the gun, you should also resign any chance you have in the future of adopting or inheriting children.
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