Friday, August 31, 2007

Kudos to Indiana and North Carolina!

Did you know...
Indiana has a law that requires that licensed child care providers recieve certification that they have completed a training course on safe sleeping practices.

and North Carolina has a law that requires child care facilities to develop a safe sleep policy that requires caregivers to place children on their backs when sleeping in order to reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome.

But She Probably Feels Really Bad...

Someone kindly reminded me yesterday that the daycare lady probably feels really bad. I'm sure she feels terrible. But, feeling really bad after the fact doesn't prevent terrible things from happening. However, feeling really informed and maybe even scared you might get in trouble does prevent terrible things from happening.

My point is this:
If someone who is given the responsibility of caring for an infant knows that putting that infant on his tummy for a nap could result in getting charged with child endangerment, or even attempted murder, she wouldn't do it. Because it IS that big of a deal.

So my goal is this:
Strengthen the law regarding infant sleep placement, and establish harsher penalties in order to deter people from doing it. By strengthening the law and having harsher penalties we will be informing people. Because in turn, it will get news and other media coverage. This needs to become information that the common person knows. A drunk driver who crashes his car into someone and kills them can't just tell the judge he didn't know he wasn't supposed to do that.

Consider this:
Drunk driving wasn't always against the law
We didn't always have to wear seat belts
Children weren't always required to be in a car seat
Doctors used to tell pregnant mothers to smoke and have a glass of wine to relax

We can make a difference! It will just take time, persistence, and maybe a little humility.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Write to Congress!

Your personal story and plea for support makes an enormous difference with Congress! Please write your two Senators and your Representative urging them to do the following:

· Encourage NICHD to continue to fund the SIDS research plan. This plan looks at the continuum of sudden death in early life that encompasses the last weeks of gestation (stillbirths) and the first year of life (SIDS).

· Establish a House committee with overseeing child-care issues.

· Establish regulations to adequately limit the number of children allowed in a day-care facility.

· Establish standard criteria for penalizing providers when there has been a violation.

· Strengthen penalties that are too weak to deter providers from breaking the law.

· Provide funding for demonstration projects for the CDC Sudden Infant Death Scene Protocol in rural, urban, and suburban settings to provide a nation-wide protocol for dealing with infant death scenes.

Furthermore, telephone calls and personal visits to your local or Washington, DC Congressional offices are also important and have tremendous impact on legislators. Legislators are always interested in responding to constituent concerns. Let them know that you are concerned about SIDS and child care and want to secure their commitment.

Click here to find your congressional officials

For further assistance, please call Sara Arnold at the First Candle/SIDS Alliance Washington, DC office at 202-544-7499 or

Who can help you in Missouri:
Pamela Speer
Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services Section of Child Care Regulation

Rep. Jeanette Mott Oxford

The Back to Sleep Campaign

Did you know...
It was thirteen years ago that the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) released its first policy statement on reducing the risk of SIDS. The statement recommended that all healthy infants be placed on their backs to sleep in order to reduce the risks of SIDS. Shortly thereafter, the NICHD joined with the AAP, the SIDS Alliance (now First Candle/ SIDS Alliance), the Association of SIDS and Infant Mortality Programs, and the Maternal and Child Health Bureau of HRSA to launch the Back to Sleep campaign to help inform all parents and infant care givers about the importance of back sleeping. Since then, the percentage of infants placed on their backs to sleep has increased dramatically, and the rates of SIDS have declined by more than 50 percent.

See the chart

View the source

Welcome & Background

Welcome to my blog, Keep Our Babies Safe. This blog was created in an effort to let me spend my energy creating something good from something that was tragic. In June, my 3 months and 2 day old nephew died while at daycare. He was put down for a nap on his tummy in a pack and play and he suffocated. In effort to respect the privacy of his parents, I will not give my nephew's name, or the names of the people who were in charge of the daycare he was at. (Unless they want me to, and in that case I'll scream it at the top of my lungs, because he matters, and the daycare providers need to be made an example out of - not being vengeful, but we need to change the way things are handled, NOW.)

The means by which my nephew died were completely avoidable. No one should ever put a baby down for a nap on their tummy. No one person should ever be left incharge of the care of 10 children. And, no one should learn these things AFTER a tragedy has occured.

This blog will stress the importance of building awareness, give ways you can help, and share information to make sure this doesn't happen again.

Most people can only speak of angels, we had the chance to hold one.
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