NRL News

Newborn left wrapped in plastic shopping bag on London street in freezing temperatures

by | Jan 22, 2024

By Cassy Fiano-Chesser 

A newborn baby was found abandoned on the streets of London this week, wrapped only in a plastic bag. Hospital staff have named the little girl Elsa.

A good Samaritan out walking a dog found baby Elsa on the night of January 18th and alerted police. “Thinking fast, that person kept the baby girl warm until London Ambulance Service paramedics arrived and checked her over before taking her to hospital,” Chief Superintendent Simon Crick said. “I am grateful to the members of the public who stayed at the scene to speak with officers and medics – your actions contributed to saving the baby’s life.”

Crick added that they now are hoping to find the mother, and are concerned with her welfare.

“[S]he will have been through a traumatic ordeal and will be in need of immediate medical attention following the birth,” he said. “Trained medics and specialist officers are ready to support her and we urge her to get in touch by phone or walk into the nearest hospital or police station. If you are the baby’s mother please know that your daughter is well; no matter what your circumstances, please do seek help by dialing 999.”

Temperatures that night were less than 30 degrees, with snow and ice warnings. Police have confirmed that Elsa was less than one hour old. She was thankfully found unharmed, and is safe and well in the hospital.

Restaurant manager Tania Iurac lives nearby, and saw the commotion on her way home from work. She said she believes the mother wanted the baby girl to be found, by leaving her in such a public place. “The towel was by a red route clearway sign. But the baby and the plastic bag weren’t there. The towel was in a really visible area next to the main road,” she said. “It was absolutely freezing last night.”

The United Kingdom does not appear to have safe haven laws like the United States. In the U.S., each state has some form of a law allowing infants to be left safely and anonymously with first responders at locations like hospitals or fire stations. A petition was submitted to introduce safe haven laws to the UK in the 2015-2017 Parliament session, but it didn’t receive enough votes to proceed.

Editor’s note. This appeared at Live Action News and is reposted with permission.

Categories: Abandoned Infants