February 6, 2019

School Choice & Safe Havens for Infants Clear North Dakota House

Bismarck—Today, HB 1464, a bill that would require North Dakota to study the benefits of school choice for families, and HB 1285, a bill that would expand safe havens for abandoned infants, both cleared the North Dakota House by wide margins.

HB1464 is sponsored by Representative Michelle Strinden, an alumnus of our Foundation’s Statesmen Academy. Strinden’s bill cleared the House by a 73-19 margin.

A statement in response to HB 1464 passing the House from Mark Jorritsma, President & Executive Director of Family Policy Alliance of North Dakota:

“To have a future full of opportunity, students need a present full of choices. We are so thankful Representative Strinden brought forward HB 1464 so that our state can start learning about school choice programs that North Dakota children are missing out on. Every child is unique—and so are their educational needs. We hope the Senate agrees with the House and passes HB 1464 quickly.”

HB 1285, sponsored by Representative Kathy Skroch, expands North Dakota’s existing “safe haven” law. The safe haven law currently allows a parent to relinquish an infant at a hospital. HB 1285 expands safe haven locations beyond hospitals to law enforcement agencies, county social services offices, or any other location approved by a county’s board of commissioners. Importantly, the bill also requires that an infant be surrendered to a person—not left by herself. The House passed the bill unanimously (92-0).

Jorritsma’s statement in response to HB 1285 passing the House:

“Family Policy Alliance of North Dakota fully supports the House’s unanimous approval of HB 1285. Our state must ensure that abandoned infants have a safe place to receive proper care—whether or not they have access to a hospital.”

Both bills now head to the Senate, where Family Policy Alliance of North Dakota will continue to advocate for their passage.


For questions or to schedule an interview with Mark Jorritsma, please contact:  Media@FamilyPolicyAlliance.com.

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