Rep. Bennett Wins Unanimous Approval of SIDS Education Enhancement

Rep. Bennett and Judy Jo Arbour present their SIDS education enhancement
 to the House Human Services Committee

New parents in Illinois will be ensured to leave the hospital with good, updated information on how to protect their newborn from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) under legislation guided through the House Human Services Committee Wednesday by State Representative Tom Bennett. Bennett (R-Gibson City) won unanimous committee approval of House Bill 1407, ensuring that the materials on SIDS prevention new parents receive at the hospital will include information developed by the American Academy of Pediatrics or a statewide or nationally recognized SIDS or medical association.

“As we continue to learn more about SIDS, prevention information continues to evolve as well. It’s crucial that new parents leave the hospital armed with the best, most reliable information available on how they can protect their child from SIDS,” Representative Bennett said.

Judy Jo Arbour, Vice President and Co-Founder of the Because of Cody SIDS education organization based in Bourbonnais, lost a grandson to SIDS. She stressed to Human Services Committee members that receiving good SIDS prevention information and following its recommendations saves lives.

“SIDS cannot be completely prevented, but parent can greatly reduce the risk by following safe sleep steps,” Arbour said. “The ‘Back to Sleep’ education campaign has helped reduce SIDS-related deaths by 50% over the past several years.”

The updated SIDS prevention campaign is called “Safe Sleep”. Steps include:
• Sleep baby on their back
• Alone in the crib
• Firm mattress
• Ensure baby’s room has good air circulation

• Smoking should be avoided
• Leave pillows, quilts toys and bumper pads out of the crib
• Educators recommend putting baby’s feet at the foot of the crib
• Experts recommend giving babies a pacifier while sleeping for the first year
• Protect baby from becoming overheated

Having cleared committee by unanimous vote, Rep. Bennett’s House Bill 1407 now advances to the floor for consideration by the full House.