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Pintor Marin: NJ Advance Media Investigation Shows Need for More Safe Sleeping Awareness & Tough Questions for Child Welfare System

(TRENTON) – Assemblywoman Eliana Pintor Marin (D-Essex) released the following statement Thursday on the NJ Advance Media’s special investigation into the dangers of bed-sharing between adults and infants.
Pintor Marin has sponsored legislation (A-4648) to require state departments to provide linkages to information on “baby boxes” and safe sleep education on their websites. The bill was approved 73-1 by the Assembly in March and referred to the Senate:
“The deaths of these precious children is deeply saddening and tragic, and also very, very frustrating. This much needs to be crystal clear: parents must avoid bed-sharing.
“Even after all the tragedies, even after all the knowledge and even after all the public discussion, New Jersey still struggles with the challenges that would help prevent these babies from dying. That’s hard to understand.
“We cannot control personal behavior, but we can do more to raise awareness of safe sleep practices. That’s why I proposed my bill to promote baby boxes and safe sleeping education, and it’s why I was pleased to see the Assembly approve it six months ago. I remain hopeful it will get to the governor’s desk.
“We can also apparently do more when we know of cases of families who are not following safe sleeping habits. Tough questions once again need to be asked of our child welfare system.
“But safe sleep education and proper oversight is just one aspect. We know that unsafe sleeping often coincides with poverty and concerns such as tobacco usage. We need an all-out effort to keep these babies safe. No one should rest easy when New Jersey has nearly 60 babies die annually while sleeping. We need to do all we can to keep these precious children safe.”