Newborn Baby Found in Fire Station’s “Baby Box”

Category: Human Interest


Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. notification / ˌnoʊ tə fɪˈkeɪ ʃən / (n) – anything that provides official information

    I received a notification via e-mail about the results of the exam.

  2. paternal instinct / pəˈtɜr nl ˈɪn stɪŋkt / (n) – the tendency or desire to think or act in a fatherly manner

    Most men in my family have strong paternal instincts.

  3. prosecute / ˈprɒs ɪˌkyut / (v) – to take legal action against someone

    The person who started the fire was prosecuted.

  4. undergo / ˌʌn dərˈgoʊ / (v) – to experience or go through something

    The baby needs to undergo heart surgery.

  5. custody / ˈkʌs tə di / (n) – the right to take a child under one’s care

    The police placed the homeless child under the custody of the organization.


Read the text below.

A newborn baby was found inside a box at a fire department in Indiana, United States.

One night in April, veteran firefighter Lieutenant /luˈtɛn ənt/ Chuck Kohler was heading to the grocery when he received an alarm from the Coolspring Township Volunteer Fire Department through his pager. The alarm turned out to be a notification that there was a baby inside the station’s “baby box.”

Upon arriving at the station, Kohler heard the cries of a baby. As a father, Kohler explained that his paternal instincts pushed him to check if the baby was free from injuries.

Indiana has an existing law that allows a person to leave a baby at medical facilities, police stations, and fire stations without being prosecuted. The Indiana Safe Haven Law also does not require parents to provide any personal information as long as the baby shows no signs of abuse.

Once found, the babies left in the box will undergo medical examinations and necessary treatments. After that, they will be placed under the custody of the Indiana Department of Child Services.

The “baby box” at the fire department was installed two years ago by an organization called Safe Haven Baby Boxes. Aside from having heating and cooling units that help babies adjust to extreme weather conditions, the box can also send a call to 911 when it is opened.

It was in November 2017 when this box was first used. At that time, someone left a newborn baby girl. She was named Baby Hope by the firefighters who found her.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

• Do you agree that parents who leave their babies should not be prosecuted? Why or why not?
• Do you think that a law similar to the Indiana Safe Haven Law can be implemented in your country? Why or why not?

Discussion B

• In your country, at what age is it ideal to become a parent? Explain.
• Do you think being a parent is difficult? Why or why not?