An unwanted pregnancy can be a traumatic experience. You may have overwhelming feelings of isolation, fear, or shame that could lead to irrational thoughts or acts, such as unsafely abandoning your baby.
If you live in Illinois and cannot care for your newborn (30 days old or younger) you are allowed to legally and anonymously relinquish the unharmed infant to designated safe havens locations.
Safe Haven locations include:
• Emergency care facilities
• Fire stations
• Police stations – including those on college campuses
Babies must be handed to a person at a Safe Haven location, but you will not be asked your name or other identifying information. No one will try to stop you or follow you.
The personnel on staff at the Safe Haven will give you an information packet which outlines how this process works and your rights as a parent. Although it is not required, you may anonymously provide medical information, so your baby will grow up with a medical history.
If you would like to talk to someone about dropping off your baby at a Safe Haven location please call our 24/7 hotline – 888-510-BABY (2229). All calls to the Save Abandoned Babies Foundation are completely confidential. We are here to help and support you, not judge you. If after reading all of this, you’d like to contact and adoption agency, please click here.
Once your baby has been safely relinquished:
As of 2017, 120 newborns have safely taken to Safe Havens. They have been adopted into loving families and are leading happy, healthy lives. To learn more about some of these families, please click here.
If you take your baby to an Illinois hospital, you will be offered medical care and counseling services. Hospitals have staff members trained to help you cope and make sure you understand your rights and your options. If you do not want these services, you may simply walk away. You can also find more information about the physical and emotional changes that occur after giving birth in this brochure. It is also available in Spanish and Polish.
Although they vary by state, every state has a Safe Haven law. Information about laws in other states can be found by clicking here.
When you bring your newborn baby to a Safe Haven you will be offered forms to fill out. If you wish, you may download them here and bring them with you when you relinquish your newborn.
Every child deserves a safe, loving and permanent home. You can help provide this by planning to have your baby adopted, even before giving birth. Any of the adoption agencies listed here would be happy to help you make an adoption plan for your child. Agency staff carefully interview and check the backgrounds of prospective adoptive parents to make sure that they: