PushSummit 2019


This is no spider web. Though with Halloween coming, you may have done a double take. Nope, this is the PushWeb of Pushers (illustrated with PushPins, no less!), who are weaving and wending their way to PushSummit 2019 just a short time away. While it's been a few years since the last convening of the PushStates, with so much going on across the PushNation, it's natural we knit up again, and this time, ON HALLOWEEN!! Can you come?

The all-day workshop is from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, October 31 in Austin, TX, and it is offered as a full-day, pre-conference session of the #MANA2019 Conference.

#EEEK! Thursday, October 10 is the last day to get the special room rate and reduced resort fee at the Hyatt Regency Lost Pines Resort & Spa! If you're coming, book your room here using the special code: "G-MANA."

Some of the incredible experts coming to co-lead the day:

BRIELLE EPSTEIN, CPM, LM, Owner of Birthwise Birth and Family Center, former Chapter Leader of ICAN of Austin a chapter of the International Cesarean Awareness Network, Legislative Chair of the Association of Texas Midwives, and a Midwife Adviser and former Board Member of Texans for Midwifery

"What happens after licensure? Does being legal make us immune to attack? Can laws and rules that seem positive come back to bite us? What is our biggest enemy? ACOG, you think? Nope. It's complacency. When we get comfortable, even in states like Texas with a long history of legal midwifery, we can get blindsided.

"We are at risk ALL of the time:

  • Attacks on VBAC are increasing
  • Attacks on breech are increasing
  • We face forced collaborative agreements
  • We face forced liability insurance without input
  • We face new education requirements

"Learn from long-time legal states how to prevent dangerous laws and rules. Learn how to build strong professional and consumer groups and how to keep them alive and avoid complacency. Work together to develop strong strategies to fight off attacks. Learn how to use the research to your advantage. Come to Austin and join us at PushSummit on October 31!"



"This is not easy work. It's tireless and thankless. It's maddening and heartbreaking. It's pulling back the layers and experiencing the dark underbelly of politics and influence. This is not work that you want to attempt to accomplish on your own. This isn't work that you want to undertake without guidance, support, and counsel from those who have been in the trenches.

"The Big Push community is a bright flashlight as you navigate the dark maze of politics, powerful lobbyists, media, and grassroots mobilization. The collective wisdom and experience of The Big Push membership fills your toolbox with the support, ideas, and motivation you need to accomplish what may initially feel unattainable.

"From the very first PushSummit in 2007 in Chicago, I knew that we were onto something. By compiling our resources and experiences from states all across the country, we have collectively pushed the legalization of CPMs nationwide. We've made good progress towards that end, and Alabama bears witness to this successful model.

"Join us at the upcoming PushSummit, so we can listen to your stories, hold space for your experiences, and give you a hand as you do the hard work to make your state the next to legalize CPMs or make your law/ rules/ regs better!"


IDA DARRAGH, CPM, LM, Executive Director of the NARM Board

"I want to encourage everyone interested in midwifery legislation to attend PushSummit 2019. We have so much collective information and experience in this area, and the best way to move forward in your state is to be a part of this discussion. Whether you are just getting started, have been at it for a while, or are just thinking about the future, you need to be involved in this workshop.

"It has been my privilege for many years to advise and support local legislative work related to the Certified Professional Midwife (CPM) credential. Whether responding on an e-list, testifying in person, or reviewing drafts of legislation, I have been involved with almost all legislation that has passed (and some that has not!) during the past 20 years. I am looking forward to being a part of the upcoming PushSummit and seeing all the incredible midwives, consumers, and advocates who will be there!"


Should you go to PushSummit 2019?

  • Are you/ your colleagues working toward licensure for CPMs in your state? Are you planning to?
  • Are you in one of the 35 states that already license CPMs but are still facing hostile rules and regulations, bad governing boards, or a sunset review on the horizon?
  • Are you concerned about the future of VBAC / HBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean / home birth after cesarean) and limitations / restrictions on Medicaid in your state for CPM coverage?
  • Are you frustrated by lack of consensus and infighting within your local birth community?
  • Are you facing legislative roadblocks, back-door dealings, and insider politics at your state capitol that prevent you from advancing?

Did you answer YES to any of these? Then PushSummit 2019 is worth your time. Share your insight, wisdom, and experience. Learn from veteran birth activists who’ve been there – or are still there – in the trenches.


PushSummit 2019 gathers change agents within the birth community, who are pushing for legal CPM practice in every US State and territory. As more people mobilize around a community continuum of care for maternity care that includes CPMs, PushState leadership is deeply focused on empowering their community members to take action toward change.

Come to PushSummit 2019 to benefit your state coalition of midwives and consumers who comprise your campaign. Get help as you increasingly organize, facilitate, and support large numbers of families, educators, and practitioners to implement action plans, programs, events, and collaborative advocacy efforts. Work together to remove the reasons why CPMs are not available for any family in your state. Topics include how to:

  • Use story to promote CPMs, the Midwives Model of Care, and community birth
  • Leverage your situation, whether you are in an illegal or legal PushState
  • Advance proactive, powerful public education, advocacy, and legislative campaigns
  • Build strong relationships with local news media and social media influencers

Midwives Chapters, Consumer Activist Groups, Birth Networks, Birth Rights Orgs: If you are working to improve birth and expand access to CPMs, you can benefit greatly from PushSummit 2019! Please send a representative (or 5!) and advance your state with a Big Push!


PushSummit 2019 Organizer + Superhero, 
PushGirl Friday of The Big Push for Midwives



Groups in every state working to improve birth can benefit from sending a representative to PushSummit 2019, not only to learn but to share, but but but ... if you just. cannot. come. in the flesh. to the October 31 workshop in Austin, Texas, and if you wish to join the dialogue virtually, send an email to inquire about participating via GoToMeeting. (Virtual spots by GoToMeeting are limited and may require non-attending Pushers to gather together in one location in their PushState, as possible ... not such a bad thing, really!) Also, for fairness sake, registration for the PushSummit is still a thing with the GoToMeeting option.

(Please try to make it if you can!! All of us have valuable information to share. Every time we leave our virtual worlds to spend face-time together, it makes our community stronger. Hope to see you there. Please forward widely!)

Can't participate in PushSummit 2019 but sincerely wish to support increased access to CPMs, home birth, or birth center birth options? Your tax-deductible gift helps the Big Push for Midwives Campaign play its important part to maintain the momentum of the national CPM movement in 2019 and beyond through its license-first approach.

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The Big Push for Midwives is fiscally sponsored by Sustainable Markets Foundation, a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. The Big Push works to increase access to Certified Professional Midwives (CPMs), the only U.S. healthcare providers with required training in out-of-hospital maternity care. If you haven’t already, please sign-up for PushAlerts here.







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  • Steff Hedenkamp
    published this page in What We Do 2019-11-30 10:54:31 -0500
  • Steff Hedenkamp
    published this page in What We Do 2019-10-10 10:59:46 -0400

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