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My e-mail to the Nebraska Legislators, explaining some of the problems with passing LB 1


Please see these two action alerts on what can still be done about the Nebraska dump law, there is still time to demand nothing short of a full repeal/age it down to Zero!


This is just a quick post, adding a copy of my letter to the Nebraska legislators that was e-mailed out yesterday to the site.

Dear Senator,

I am writing to encourage you to support nothing short of full and permanent repeal of Nebraska’s legalized child abandonment law.

In practice, due to the constrains of the special session the most expedient way to effect an end to child dumping in Nebraska would be to age the so called “Safe Haven” law down to Zero point Zero (0.0).

The 30 days and under “solution” is anything but.

It will still fail to address:

  • the ways the Nebraska “safe haven” law circumvents the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA)
  • the child’s lifelong needs, such as need for medical, social, genetic, and cultural history
  • how the “safe haven” law can be used to cover crimes such as rape and incest
  • women’s medical needs, as the law encourages hidden pregnancies and secret births far from medical care
  • out of state child dumping, as Nebraska’s date will be higher than some other states, out of state abandonments could still be a factor
  • and numerous other concerns

Even as the Unicam has been in the Special Session this week, another 15 year old-girl was dumped Tuesday, and a second girl, whose parent attempted to “safe haven” her is still on the run, having fled the hospital rather than endure legalized abandonment.

The Nebraska DHHS figures place the latest girl left as number 36, but my co-author and I on our blog concerning the Nebraska legalized abandonment cases, Children of Corn (, have discovered at least 12 other “unofficial” cases of attempted use of the “safe haven” law via media reports, putting a more realistic total at closer to 48 kids who have in some way interacted with the “safe haven” process.

You can find a copy of our statistics and child by child timeline of the Nebraska abandonments here, (


Regrettably, all LB 1 (with the 30 day cut off date) will do is create a second set of kids abandoned, when in so many ways, Nebraska has yet to even begin to deal with the long term needs of the first set of kids abandoned under the legalized abandonment law.

Any date set, be it 3 days or 30, or even 3 years is still an arbitrary date. There will always be kids on each side of that arbitrarily chosen and artificially created line.

This goes against the very spirit of the motto emblazoned upon the Nebraska State seal, “Equality Before the Law.”

Legalized child abandonment creates a class of people receiving inequitable treatment, with lifelong effects.

Speaking as an adopted adult myself, please hear me when I say that events early in a child’s life, whether they can personally remember them or not, still affect that person in a lifelong manner.

As my adoption records are sealed, I have no way of personally knowing the circumstances surrounding my first days. I have no way to know whether I was abandoned at the hospital where I was born or not as a court order unsealing my records would be required for me to find out. From what I have been told, I was in foster care for a time before my adoption. I know firsthand that going through life with question marks where other people usually have answers can at times be difficult. Knowing that those question marks are not a byproduct of natural process, but are rather the result of a state created process, and having concrete measurable ways in which my treatment under law is different from that of my peers, and of family members has led me to one very simple conclusion, being treated differently under law merely based upon accident of birth is a form of injustice.

If LB 1 passes, some kids are going to be on one side of an artificially constructed line, and others are going to be on another. The creation of the line itself is the problem, it is an arbitrary construction. Governor Heineman has in some ways placed before you an impossible task: deciding which kids it’s ok to abandon and which kids it’s not ok to abandon.

The answer from the kid’s point of view is that it’s NEVER ok to abandon.

The legalized abandonment law does harm
. Harm that is pushed down upon some of the most vulnerable and youngest citizens, those least able to speak out in defense of their own rights and long term interests.

Please, before it is too late for yet another set of Nebraska’s children, reconsider.

Work to age the law down to zero point zero (0.0)
such that child abandonment is no longer enabled and encouraged by Nebraska state law.

Work to fully REPEAL any law that even pretends dumping children could ever be a “good thing”.

Kids are counting on you to get this right.

Thank you for your time and consideration,

Lauren Sabina Kneisly
co-author of Children of the Corn (

[personal contact information removed]

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