I mentioned a bit about the news that a key group of midwives of color, who were previously involved with the Inner Council at the Midwives Alliance of North America, resigned early this week.
More has been released regarding their resignation, so I wanted to post additional information here.
I realized shortly after posting that I in fact do know quite a few of the midwives who resigned–I just hadn’t been in contact with them lately, and did not know they were so active in MANA. Jessica Roach sent me their letter of resignation, which is also posted on this blog.
The first part is a letter from MANA, seemingly in response to the resignation of the midwives of color. What follows is the resignation letter.
Again, because I am not involved in MANA, I don’t want to comment on the situation specifically, except perhaps to say that I feel much solidarity with the women who have resigned. Claudia Booker, Jennie Joseph and Michelle Peixinho I know to be really incredible midwives and passionate leaders–I trust their opinions and experiences.
Again, for me, the bottom line is this: we can no longer ignore the disproportionately high negative maternal and infant health outcomes faced by communities of color.
And it’s going to be damn hard to address those disparities if we can’t even address racism in our own organizations–especially if that racism means that providers of color choose to leave or are pushed out.
The needs of communities of color in maternity care can no longer be the topic of an interest group, or a caucus, or a breakout session. It has to be THE FOCUS. And my guess is that if we address the needs of communities of color, we’ll probably change maternity care in ways that benefit everyone.
Jessica Roach also wrote a follow-up letter about the resignation that Claudia posted on her facebook page–I’ll share it at the Radical Doula facebook page.