Keeping Baby Safe: Crib Safety
I have a rather unique perspective on baby safety, since I had my first three children in the 1980s and then about 20 years later I had my next 4 children, 2 sets of twins now 5 and 7. When my oldest daughter Jamie was born, who just turned 30, I had just started as host of Good Morning America and I brought her to work with me each day. That was fairly unheard of at the time. I had a nursery at the studio and I would bundle her up each morning at 4am for the ride in to the city. Awareness to use child safety seats in cars was just beginning, and diaper genies and warm wipes were not yet invented. We all looked for cribs with pull down sides and filled them with decorative bumpers and stuffed animals to be the best moms we could be. We didn't know yet about the dangers of possible suffocation in cribs and playpens, or about the need for flame retardant jammies, or the dangers of BPA in our babies bottles.
Over the next 20 years as host of Good Morning America I had to interview far too many families who sadly lost children to these kinds of safety issues. And I'm often asked what I enjoyed most about my years hosting the morning show, and I have to say it was being able to help keep Americans informed about safety issues so that they could keep their families healthy and safe.
Seven years ago I once again found myself buying cribs and strollers and decorating a nursery when my twins Kate and Max were born. I couldn't help but notice how much things had changed. And it's not just that we now have video monitors so that we can literally watch our babies sleep from our office desks, or GPS trackers that we can put in their little sneakers, but today we have an army of vigilant experts helping to ensure that we keep our children safe and healthy. And they are here with us today. Through the work of organizations like the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the American Academy of Pediatrics and groups like Keeping Babies Safe, parents today are better informed and thus more equipped to ensure their child's safety.
It's especially important to have this national discussion during economic hard times, when families are trying to make their dollars stretch and it's not uncommon to pass down older cribs and playpens to younger children. That unfortunately can be a recipe for disaster. That is why we are all here today. That is why I got involved in this public awareness campaign, to again be able to bring the latest safest information to parents across the country to keep their children safe. I want to thank the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the American Academy of Pediatrics and Keeping Babies Safe for letting me be a part of this initiative.