The Journal Gazette
Wednesday, January 31, 2018 4:50 pm

Inspector: Baby box safe to use


An Allen County Building Department inspection this afternoon found a "baby box" at a fire station in Woodburn won't have to be removed.

A baby box allows a person to surrender a baby for care within 30 days of his or her birth and maintain anonymity. Proponents say the boxes can save infants' lives by giving desperate parents an alternative to placing a newborn in the trash or another unsafe place. 

John Caywood, building department commissioner, said the box did not have the required permits when it was installed. But he said it complied with appropriate county building code rules.

"It's safe to use," he said.

The inspection was prompted by an anonymous telephone complaint last week that was followed up this morning with a written complaint from Michael and Jean Morrisey of Massachusetts.

They have been campaigning for some time against the boxes and Monica Kelsey of Woodburn, founder of Safe Haven Baby Boxes, a nonprofit organization instrumental in the fire station installation.

Morrisey in July was banned by an Allen County civil court injunction from contacting Kelsey, her family or the organization after she claimed his conduct defamed her and caused her to "live in in fear."

For more on this story, read Thursday's print edition of The Journal Gazette or return to after 1 a.m. Thursday.

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