CSHB 322(HES): "An Act relating to infants who are safely surrendered by a parent shortly after birth."

00 CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 322(HES) 01 "An Act relating to infants who are safely surrendered by a parent shortly after birth." 02 BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF ALASKA: 03 * Section 1. The uncodified law of the State of Alaska is amended by adding a new section 04 to read: 05 SHORT TITLE. This Act may be known as the Safe Surrender of Infants Act. 06 * Sec. 2. AS 11.81 is amended by adding a new section to read: 07 Article 4A. Prohibition on Prosecution. 08 Sec. 11.81.500. No prosecution for safe surrender of infant. A parent may 09 not be criminally prosecuted for surrendering a child of the parent in the manner 10 described in AS 47.10.013(c) if the child is an infant who is less than eight days of 11 age. 12 * Sec. 3. AS 47.10.013 is amended by adding new subsections to read: 13 (c) A parent may not be criminally prosecuted for surrendering an infant in the 14 manner described in this subsection although surrendering the infant in the manner 15 described in this subsection constitutes abandonment for purposes of this chapter. An

01 infant's parent is considered to have abandoned the infant safely, and, notwithstanding 02 AS 25.20.030 and AS 47.10.120, the parent's legal duty to support the infant is 03 extinguished if 04 (1) the parent, without expressing an intent to return for the infant, 05 leaves the infant in the physical custody of a person who the parent reasonably 06 believes is a peace officer, a physician or hospital employee in a hospital or hospital 07 emergency room, or a volunteer with or employee of a fire station or emergency 08 medical service who is performing activities within the scope of the volunteer's or 09 employee's fire services or emergency medical services duties; and 10 (2) there is no evidence at the time of abandonment that the infant has 11 been physically injured. 12 (d) A person to whom an infant is abandoned safely within the meaning of (c) 13 of this section shall 14 (1) act appropriately to care for the infant; 15 (2) inform the parent that the parent may, but is not required to, answer 16 any questions regarding the name or identity of the infant or the parents of the infant 17 unless the parent chooses to contact the department under (3) of this subsection; 18 (3) ask the parent if the parent wishes to relinquish the parent's 19 parental rights and release the infant for adoption; if the answer is affirmative, the 20 person shall contact the department so that the parent can discuss that option with the 21 department. 22 (e) A hospital, hospital emergency room, fire station, emergency medical 23 service, or employees or volunteers of these entities, are not liable for civil damages 24 for failure to discharge the duties listed in (d) of this section. 25 (f) A record regarding the surrender of an infant under (c) of this section is 26 confidential and not subject to public inspection or copying under AS 40.25.100 - 27 40.25.220. 28 * Sec. 4. AS 47.10.086(a) is amended to read: 29 (a) Except as provided in (b), (c), and (g) [(b) AND (c)] of this section, the 30 department shall make timely, reasonable efforts to provide family support services to 31 the child and to the parents or guardian of the child that are designed to prevent out-of-

01 home placement of the child or to enable the safe return of the child to the family 02 home, when appropriate, if the child is in an out-of-home placement. The department's 03 duty to make reasonable efforts under this subsection includes the duty to 04 (1) identify family support services that will assist the parent or 05 guardian in remedying the conduct or conditions in the home that made the child a 06 child in need of aid; 07 (2) actively offer the parent or guardian, and refer the parent or 08 guardian to, the services identified under (1) of this subsection; the department shall 09 refer the parent or guardian to community-based family support services whenever 10 community-based services are available and desired by the parent or guardian; and 11 (3) document the department's actions that are taken under (1) and (2) 12 of this subsection. 13 * Sec. 5. AS 47.10.086 is amended by adding a new subsection to read: 14 (g) The department is not required to make reasonable efforts of the type 15 described in (a) of this section if the department took emergency custody of an infant 16 under AS 47.10.142 after the infant was abandoned safely within the meaning of 17 AS 47.10.013(c). 18 * Sec. 6. AS 47.10.990 is amended by adding a new paragraph to read: 19 (32) "infant" means a child who is less than eight days of age.