Ald. Mark Borkowski
Press Release

Supervisor Mark Borkowski Decries Infant Co-Sleeping Deaths

Criticizes Ad Campaign, Says Co-Sleeping Deaths Are Preventable and a Matter of Common Sense

By - Sep 24th, 2013 01:53 pm

Milwaukee County Supervisor Mark Borkowski said today that a public service announcement advertising campaign on deadly co-sleeping with infants has not had the desired effect in preventing infant deaths, and he suggested local and state officials take more aggressive action to halt them.

“Our community has now reached double figures in infants who have died in co-sleeping incidents,” he said. “Milwaukee gun deaths have stolen the attention from this tragedy, yet infants continue to die in bed while co-sleeping with their parents and other relatives.

“It’s time we did something more than advertise about the issue; it’s time we do something concrete to get the message out to parents about the dangers of co-sleeping. We are now at 10 deaths and counting. When will state and local officials respond with more effective measures?”

Borkowski said legislators should consider such measures as felony manslaughter charges against parents who cause the death of a child through co-sleeping, or removing any other children from the home. He also said that mandating parenting classes should be considered and added that felony drug charges should be issued against parents who use drugs and cause death by co-sleeping.

“I am not familiar with a culture that encourages bonding with a child by getting stoned, falling asleep with their baby and ultimately smothering it,” Borkowski said. “Obviously, you cannot legislate against stupidity. But are we as a community going to continue to stand by and watch the infant mortality tally from co-sleeping go up without doing something?”

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