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VT - Activist will walk for infant protection

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  • VT - Activist will walk for infant protection

    VERMONT
    http://www.rutlandherald.com/apps/pb...1014/NEWS/4101
    40373&SearchID=73186968299014

    Activist will walk for infant protection

    October 14, 2004

    By DANIEL BARLOW Southern Vermont Bureau
    HINESBURG — A former Woodstock resident plans to walk more than 34 miles from
    his home to Montpelier today and Friday to bring attention to the lack of "safe
    haven" laws in Vermont.

    Rocky Harlow, a theatrical light equipment salesman born in Woodstock and now
    living in Hinesburg, hopes to highlight the state's lack of laws
    decriminalizing newborn abandonment.

    Vermont is one of four states in the country without such a law, which many
    believe saves the lives of unwanted infants by creating an alternative to
    abandoning them outside.

    Harlow said he has tried contacting numerous Vermont legislators to sponsor a
    bill in the House or Senate; his effort resulted in many promises, but no
    action. He hopes that his walk, which will end Friday with a press conference
    at the office of Secretary of State Deb Markowitz, will prompt a legislator to
    take up the issue.

    "It's almost as if they are waiting for a body to show up first," Harlow said,
    referring to the low number of child abandonment cases in Vermont. "I thought
    the Vermont Legislature was really forward-thinking and proactive."

    Texas, which sees approximately 33 abandoned babies each year, was the first
    state to pass a safe haven law in 1999. Beside Vermont, neither Nebraska,
    Alaska nor Hawaii have passed safe haven laws.

    Under these laws, a mother who has an unwanted child can hand the infant over
    to a law enforcement agency without any questions; typically, supporters of
    these laws say, these children would be left for dead in trash cans, bathrooms
    or the woods.

    Harlow said he got involved in the movement five years ago after reading about
    a teenage mother who abandoned her baby in a trash can after giving birth at
    her prom. This incident coincided with the birth of Harlow's second child.

    "It would just tear me up to hear about those stories," he said.

    Harlow will be joined on the walk by his father, Bud Harlow, his younger
    sister, Heather Harlow, both of Woodstock, and two safe haven advocates from
    California.

    Harlow said he plans to walk for about eight hours today, covering
    approximately 20 miles, and then spend the night at the state park in
    Waterbury. He will complete his trip Friday and meet with Markowitz, who
    discovered an abandoned baby girl during a walk in 1991.

    Offering support such as water and food during this walk will be Michael and
    Jean Morrisey, two advocates of safe haven laws from Lexington, Mass. In that
    state, a safe haven law will become active Oct. 29.

    "A lot of laws passed are because of cause and effect," said Michael Morrisey,
    who became involved in the movement three years ago after he and his wife
    handled the burial of an abandoned newborn in Boston.

    "A lot of lawmakers probably say this isn't happening in Vermont, why should we
    pass this law?"

    But it has occurred in Vermont, he explained. In the late 1990s, for example, a
    Green Mountain College student abandoned her infant in Poultney. The child
    survived.

    Harlow said he is cautiously optimistic that the publicity will get a
    legislator to support his initiative.

    "It's extremely frustrating that our state legislators are determined not to
    take action," he said. "This is an issue they have continually ignored."

    Contact Daniel Barlow at [email protected].

  • #2
    VT - Activist will walk for infant protection

    These are sme of the saddest phrases in the English language
    "newborn abandonment". "unwanted infants" "unwanted child"
    We seem to have a fair number of out of state folks coming here to show
    us how to do things. I guess I shouldn't complain, after watching the floods
    of out of staters that came during the "civil union" issue this is nothing.
    and two safe haven advocates from California Michael and Jean Morrisey, two advocates of safe haven laws from Lexington, Mass.
    Sadly I will be out of town when Mr Barlow makes his entry into the
    city. Perhaps some good will come of it. I will keep a check on the session
    when it opens later this winter.

    Raymond




    Comment


    • #3
      VT - Activist will walk for infant protection


      "sylak" <[email protected]> wrote in message
      news:[email protected]
      These are sme of the saddest phrases in the English language
      "newborn abandonment". "unwanted infants" "unwanted child"
      We seem to have a fair number of out of state folks coming here to show us how to do things. I guess I shouldn't complain, after watching the floods of out of staters that came during the "civil union" issue this is nothing.
      and two safe haven advocates from California Michael and Jean Morrisey, two advocates of safe haven laws from Lexington, Mass.
      Sadly I will be out of town when Mr Barlow makes his entry into the city. Perhaps some good will come of it. I will keep a check on the session when it opens later this winter. Raymond
      You have to accept the fact that these people, like all good
      fundamentalists, have no concept of boundaries. The world is their
      playground.

      Marley

      Comment


      • #4
        VT - Activist will walk for infant protection

        >
        "sylak" <[email protected]> wrote in messagenews:[email protected]
        These are sme of the saddest phrases in the English language
        "newborn abandonment". "unwanted infants" "unwanted child"
        We seem to have a fair number of out of state folks coming here to show us how to do things. I guess I shouldn't complain, after watching the floods of out of staters that came during the "civil union" issue this is nothing.
        and two safe haven advocates from California Michael and Jean Morrisey, two advocates of safe haven laws from Lexington, Mass.
        Sadly I will be out of town when Mr Barlow makes his entry into the city. Perhaps some good will come of it. I will keep a check on the session when it opens later this winter. Raymond
        You have to accept the fact that these people, like all goodfundamentalists, have no concept of boundaries. The world is theirplayground.
        Litterbox may be more apt.


        J.


        Marley



        Reply to jmhjmd at aol.


        Comment

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