Mayor Barrett spreads safe-sleep message
Tom Murray and The WTMJ News Team
Photo: Video by tmj4.com
MILWAUKEE - The mayor and health commissioner are spreading a message about infant-safe sleeping.
When putting nine-month-old Jayde to bed, Devona Wright-Cottrell understands safe sleeping.
"She should be in a crib or pack and play, somewhere firm and comfortable in her own space," Wright Cottrell says.
Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett and Health Commissioner Bevan Baker visited Devona's church Sunday for what the mayor calls Safe Sleep Sabbath. It's a call to put infants in their own cribs or Pack n' Plays without suffocation hazards like blankets or toys.
From the pulpit, the mayor says too many babies die from unsafe sleep.
"Making sure that people understand if they love their baby, the safest place for the baby to be is in their own crib lying on their back," Barrett says.
The Health Department warns against co-sleeping, advising parents that babies should sleep nearby. But, not in the same bed as their parents.
The city estimates unsafe sleeping is to blame for about one of every five infant deaths in Milwaukee.
"It's really saddening to me as the mother of a nine-month-old," Wright Cottrell says.
The mayor is hoping those who heard him speak Sunday will share the message with others who may not be in church.
If you don't have a safe place for your baby to sleep, you might be eligible for a free Pack n' Play. You can call the Milwaukee Cribs For Kids program at 414-286-8620.