As of today, the Landmark fire hall has a safe site for any mother wanting to surrender their newborn child.
After months of preparation, the Executive Director for Life Culture Canada, Susan Penner, is happy to announce that the Hope's Cradle site is now open.
This is the first safe surrender site in all of Manitoba, and it is a necessary resource for those with no other options.
“Any mom who would use this is in a really desperate circumstance, so it provides an option for her to be anonymous and for her to surrender the baby safely.”
She says it might even be a temporary option for some mothers.
“Let's say a woman is being trafficked and she's pregnant. Those situations can be really scary, so she might bring her baby here temporarily,” she says. “If she's in a difficult circumstance or if she's just in a position where she just feels she has no other options, then at least she knows the baby will be safe.”
This safe site allows for newborns to be dropped off at a safe place where they will be cared for, instead of someplace where nobody will find them.
“Obviously this is a much safer option than a baby being abandoned in a dumpster or wherever else it might be abandoned. This is best because the baby stays alive.”
The person who drops off the baby stays anonymous, even to the firefighters, as there is a camera that looks down on the bassinet, but you can't actually see the person who's dropping the baby off.
Along with the bassinet, there is an envelope for the mom that contains a package of resources.
The mother also has the opportunity to fill out medical information and write a letter to the baby that she can mail in at a later date.
Penner says that around 30 seconds after a baby is dropped off, the RM of Taché fire department is notified.
"And then through the camera you can immediately see if there's a baby in there, to which the RM would go respond and also contact EMS.”
From there, the baby is brought to the hospital and CFS is notified. CFS then takes the baby and hopefully the baby is placed in a permanent home.