Baby Karl’s story in Us Weekly (excerpt below) is a tragic one that seems to be all too common. His mom, Amber Scorah, dropped her sweet boy off at day care and never saw him alive again.
In “Wake the Baby,” we shared baby Shepard’s tragic story. His mom, Ali Dodd, has now become an outspoken advocate for sleep safety and has successfully changed laws in her state to help hold day care providers accountable.
By the time 11-week old Shepard died, authorities say his childcare providers should have known better. Just two weeks before he was found dead in his car seat by a day care teacher, the Oklahoma Department of Human Services cited Shepard’s in-home day care for allowing infants to sleep in car seats in spite of regulations that prohibit it due to the risk of SIDS.
However, authorities say Shepard was put to sleep in an unbuckled car seat and placed alone in a room anyway. While the medical examiner ruled the death “unexplained,” authorities believe Shepard died of ‘positional asphyxiation,’ likely slumped into a position in the unbuckled car seat that compromised his breathing.
Now, Amber and Ali are teaming up to tackle the issue, this time fighting for paid time off for all new parents.
Read more about their mission in their Change.org petition here:
CHANGE.ORG: Paid Family Leave For All In Your First 100 Days
Under ordinary circumstances, two mothers as different as we are would never have met. One of us is from Oklahoma and is a registered Republican. The other is an unmarried liberal who lives in Brooklyn.
But tragedy has a way of bringing people together. Last year, we both lost our babies, infant sons who died at daycare, after we’d left them in childcare to return to work.
Neither of us wanted to leave our babies when we did, at mere weeks old, not yet. But neither of us had the luxury of choice. Our respective employers would not grant us any more time for parental leave, and we couldn’t afford to quit our jobs.
Read more about Amber & Baby Karl’s story here in Us Weekly:
Meanwhile, Scorah and Ali Dodd — an Oklahoma mom who lost her son on his first day of daycare — are campaigning for parental leave in the United States. “Neither of us had wanted to leave our babies yet, but we had no choice as our families needed income, and we both feel that if we had longer with our babies, things might have turned out differently,” says Scorah.
According to Scorah, one in four American mothers has to return to work within two weeks of giving birth, while 87 percent of Americans have no access to paid leave through their employers. “Yet paid leave has been proven to reduce infant death and have long-lasting positive effects on children,” she says.
Scorah encourages everyone who agrees that American babies need time with their parents at the beginning of their lives to add their names to this petition.