Social Justice

Why do more women and infants of color in the U.S. die than their white counterparts? Six different midwives address the critical issue of health disparities in the US and describe how midwifery care improves birth outcomes for women and babies in vulnerable communities by providing safe, supportive and culturally sensitive care.

Racial Disparities in Birth Outcomes

Racial Disparities in Birth Outcomes and Racial Discrimination as an Independent Risk Factor Affecting Maternal, Infant, and Child Health   An Executive Summary of Existing Research

Despite widespread calls to reduce the infant mortality, preterm birth, and low birthweight rates in the United States racial disparities in birth outcomes persist, with African-American infants remaining the most vulnerable. In 2013, the rate of preterm birth for African-American infants was nearly double that for white infants. Known medical, genetic, and/or sociodemographic factors alone do not account for these disparities, leading researchers to examine race and the experience of racial discrimination as independent risk factors for affecting maternal, infant, and child health

Social Justice, Birth Justice & Midwifery

There are several categories of human rights that are integral to social justice work:

Health Disparities & Equity

In order to have an effective, equitable and sustainable healthcare system for all Americans we must first evaluate how healthcare policies actually work and how we wish them to work differently.

Saving our Babies

Black women experience greater exposure to violence, systemic racism, and micro-aggression. During these experiences cotisol and other stress hormone levels remain elevated. This contributes to preterm birth, low birth weight, and infant mortality.

Use of Inclusive Language

In December 2014, the Midwives Alliance Core Competencies were revised using gender inclusive language in order to better reflect the diversity of midwives and the clients they serve.

 

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