On 5/11/17 Arizona’s Governor Ducey has signed into law a Good Samaritan Law (HB 2494) which empowers citizens to assist in removing a child or pet that has been left in an unattended vehicle with the hopes that their efforts will save their lives.
Arizona now joins 20 other states in which there is active legislation in support of assisting a child or pet in an unattended vehicle. Existing states are: Alabama, California, Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Nebraska, Nevada, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Washington, and Wisconsin.
This is only one part of what is needed to eliminate situations where a caregiver has left behind a child or pet in a car, regardless of the outside temperatures. As it has been shown and proven that over time regardless if left behind in a car in Hot, Warm, or Cold temperatures a life can be lost.
In the United States, as of this writing, we have lost 6 children and a Canine Officer. In all cases the temperatures were less than 90 degrees. In fact, of the 6 children, 5 of them occurred in states where there is an established Good Samaritan Law. The same was true for the Canine Officer. What this demonstrates that though the law has good intentions it is not fool proof.
As shown in the image, Todays Solution, it will take an attack from all fronts to end this problem.
There are technologies and solutions/tips today that can be installed a car and new ones being developed within new cars and car seats. Yet each require the purchase of such and maintenance by a caregiver, as well needing the ability to move these solutions with the child or pets as they are moved between cars of the caregivers (Parents, Grandparents, Siblings, Babysitter, etc).
As reported by US Department of Transportation, National Highway Safety Administration in a July 2015 report:
Functional Assessment of Unattended Child Reminder Systems:
“Some of the products evaluated required more user interaction than others. Some required user actions that, if not completed, would lead to the system not functioning properly.”
So we need to continually help (REMIND) all caregivers during their busy lives that they might have had a child or pet with them. As unbelievable as this may be we hear of 37 children dying each year and an unknown number or pets. This is not just an Arizona issue or a United States problem. It is happening all over the world and it happens to all demographics. We hear stories of Fire and Police officials, Mom’s, Dad’s Grandparents, etc.
So what else can be done? Again it will take all fronts to eliminate this problem, yet an area that is not getting the attention required is that of Awareness, in a strategic way. Today many companies and organizations that are working to solve this problem, including BabySavTM a 501(c)3 organization, expect the caregiver to take some responsibility and invest in a solution. Yet BabySav recognizes in most cases this will not happen, at least not in large enough numbers to make a significant difference. This is why the focus needs to be on where caregivers are going once they exit the vehicle: to stores, offices, etc. The more locations that these stickers are placed, the more the emphasis there will be on awareness, which can help to eliminate this situation.
BabySav is working with retailers and businesses across the country to establish new precedents and have this iconic and trademark sticker placed on the entrances to buildings and offices, on shopping carts, and eventually as push notifications so that they are seen every day. Much like a stop sign, BabySav labels will become a subconscious awareness creating a response to not forget, for any reason.
Until caregivers accept that it could happen to them we need to be solving this from a different perspective, which is what BabySav is focused on.
As stated previously we need solutions from all fronts to give full coverage and protection. As mentioned above, there are gaps in each. BabySav is the one solution that will help fill those gaps while complimenting each of the other sectors to help solve the solution as a whole.
There is NO reason we should lose another child or pet due to our busy lives or distractions. These children are the future and need to have the opportunity to demonstrate what they can bring to this world.