First Safe Haven Baby Box approved in Long Beach
Safe Haven Baby Boxes have been a topic in the court room since the beginning of this month and we finally have a verdict after it was put off the first time.
The Long Beach Board of Aldermen this week approved an ordinance to allow a Safe Haven Baby Box. It will be the first of its kind in Mississippi. Organizer Caitlin Kelley said, “All along, I knew it would be a wonderful city for this to be in. To watch a city council come together the way they came together unanimously voted, saw a need, saw a mission that they could stand behind. To stand behind one of our countries most vulnerable population was amazing to watch. I think they took a really bold statement forefront in the state of Mississippi to say ‘yes, we will raise awareness here. Let’s start here. Let’s move forward.’”
Mayor George Bass is happy to work with Kelley and other officials to get the box installed as quickly as possible. “Right now, we’re looking at Central Fire Station. There’s someone there 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Whether the fire crew is still on a call, there are still folks there that can hear the alarm and know what’s going on and be able to react to it. Now in the future, if we have a bigger call, we got two more fire stations we will certainly be putting those there.”
The next step after the city ordinance is passed on October 4th is to begin to raise funds for the program. “Once the funding is in, whatever we raise above and beyond everything over that will go to billboards, marketing campaigns, and advertising around the whole Coast.”
Kelley doesn’t plan to stop in Long Beach and will try to be advocate for baby boxes in every city along the Coast.