Legislators Change Baby Moses Law

By: Toni Harrison
By: Toni Harrison

The Baby Moses Law is not new to Texas but as of September first, it will be changing.

"The change that has come about from the Baby Moses Law is that when a child is left at a secure location, CPS is no longer mandated to search for the identity of that parent," said Lori Conerly with Child Protective Services.

The law was made to protect mothers from criminal prosecution if they leave their babies at state-designated safe locations, like hospitals and fire stations.

"According to the Baby Moses Law if a child were dropped off at a fire station of course our first concern would be both the heath and welfare of that child," said Mike Donoho, Bryan Fire Chief.

But according to Conerly, some parents felt the law did not give them complete protection from prosecution once their identity was discovered.

And that barrier could eventually jeopardize the life of a child.

"Whatever barriers we can remove to make sure a child is safe and secure, that's what we want to do," said Conerly.

In any Baby Moses case the safety of the child is most important, and authorities are making it clear that that is their first priority.

"They didn't want anything to get in the way of a parent bringing that child to safety," said Conerly.

Child Protective Services has always made an effort to find parents in Baby Moses situations. Saying that it was necessary to know the child's medical history.

But even though CPS will no longer search for a baby's mother, it will check the state's paternity registry to find if there is a father trying to claim that child.

"We are still mandated to check the paternity registry to see if there is any father that is searching or looking for their child, we want the total focus to be on the safety of the child." said Conerly.

Legislators amended the law this year after a woman who abandoned her child at a fire station was identified when she appeared in court.

"The goal is still the same, to maintain the safety of the child," said Conerly.

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