Nebraska lawmakers will return to Lincoln on November 14th for a special session to deal with the “safe haven” law. Governor Dave Heineman made the call today and will ask legislators to change the law to allow the drop off of infants up to three days old. The way the law reads now, any children up to 18 years can be dropped off without fear of prosecution for abandonment.
State Senator Cap Dierks of Ewing says he agrees with the Governor’s action. He says, “It’s apparent we need to do something. I really felt we might be able to wait until the session starts in January but it seems to be getting more onerous all the time and there are some suspicions that around Christmastime, it’s going to be difficult, so it’s probably just as well we get started on it.”
Dierks says the original bill would not have led to these problems. Amendments were tacked on and he says the age was changed to get action on the bill. Dierks says he thinks an age limit of three days should be adequate, but adds, any other side issues dealing with juvenile concerns will have to wait for the regular session in January.
Nearly two dozen children have been abandoned in Nebraska since mid-September, some from states as far away as Georgia. Many of the children have been in their teens.
Thanks to Jerry Oster, WNAX, Yankton