TODAY is the day, Massachusetts!!!
The midwifery bill URGENTLY needs you!
Please call your own legislator NOW, letting him/her know that having good birth options is important to you. Please ask them to call Chairman Dempsey and ask him to release our bill—HB 4253—An Act Relative to Certified Professional Midwives—today.
We only have HOURS left to get the bill out of committee.
Every call makes a big difference.
If you have more time, please call the following Ways and Means committee members (list with numbers follows at the end of this message), asking them to release the bill ASAP so it can go to the House floor for a vote. We can still get the bill out but need your help now, more than ever.
With your help, we can do this. Thank you!
Find your own rep’s contact info here:
Ways and Means Committee members:
Please call and ask them to release the bill for a vote!
- Stephen Kulik 617-722-2380
- Martha M. Walz 617-722-2380
- Angelo M. Scaccia 617-722-2060
- Gloria L. Fox 617-722-2060
- Thomas M. Petrolati 617-722-2255
- Robert M. Koczera 617-722-2582
- Christine E. Canavan 617-722-2575
- Timothy J. Toomey Jr 617-722-2380
- Benjamin Swan 617-722-2680
- Colleen M. Garry 617-722-2380
- Geraldine Creedon 617-722-2305
- Kevin J. Murphy 617-722-2877
- David B. Sullivan 617-722-2070
- Ruth B. Balser 617-722-2396
- John P. Fresolo 617-722-2017
- Walter F. Timilty 617-722-2230
- Thomas M. Stanley 617-722-2230
- William Smitty Pignatelli 617-722-2582
- Joyce A. Spiliotis 617-722-2430
- Carl M. Sciortino, Jr 617-722-2013
- Angelo J. Puppolo, Jr. 617-722-2090
- Michael D. Brady 617-722-2230
- James J. Dwyer 617-722-2220
- Ann-Margaret Ferrante 617-722-2210
- Timothy R. Madden 617-722-2810
- Viriato Manuel deMacedo 617-722-2100
- Daniel K. Webster 617-722-2487
- Geoffrey G. Diehl 617-722-2810
- Angelo D'Emilia 617-722-2810
- Shaunna O'Connell 617-722-2305
- Donald H. Wong 617-722-2488
617-254-6175 617-901-2777 - c
Contact for information and questions:
- Miriam Khalsa (Mass Midwives Alliance)
508-655-7885 ([email protected].com)
- Audra Karp (Mass Midwives Alliance)
617-522-8383 ([email protected])
- Ann Sweeney (Mass Friends of Midwives)
617-254-6175/617-901-2777 ([email protected])
- Krina Patel (The Suffolk Group)
617-303-4570 ([email protected])
Stephen Kulik 617-722-2380
Martha M. Walz 617-722-2380
If you care about mothers and babies, the Commonwealth needs your help TODAY to PASS HB 4253—An Act Relative to Certified Professional Midwives. We have just a few days left to pass this important legislation that will regulate Certified Professional Midwives. Currently, there is no state oversight, which means:
- ANYONE—even an 18 year old car mechanic—can hang out a shingle and practice as a midwife and
- Hairdressers must be licensed to practice in Massachusetts but midwives do not. Should a “cut and color” be regulated and have professional practice requirements while MA midwives currently have none?
How to help?
CALL your own STATE REPRESENTATIVEYou can find contact information for your representative at the following link: http://wheredoivotema.com/bal/myelectioninfo.php
- GIVE them an update on the bill, HB 4253—An Act Relative to Certified Professional Midwives—and let them know the bill is now with the House Ways and Means committee
- ASK them to contact Chairman Dempsey's office (617-722-2990) (representing Haverill and Chair, House Ways & Means Committee) to REQUEST that HB 4253 BE RELEASED TO THE HOUSE FLOOR FOR A VOTE ASAP
- ASK them to then support the bill when it reaches the House Floor
- URGE them to tell their colleagues to support the bill on the House Floor
Want to do more?
PLEASE reach out to Massachusetts HOUSE LEADERSHIP(see listing at the end of this message), letting them know:
- This bill is important to you
- That this bill is being supported by House leaders
Also, we will be at the State House on Wednesday and Thursday afternoons this week (7/25 and 7/26). Please join us! Drop a quick email to Ann Sweeney at [email protected], and we’ll let you know where to rendezvous with us.
Text of the bill can be found on the State House website: http://www.malegislature.gov/Bills/187/House/H04253 Please help us in spreading the word and passing this legislation into law! Keep the calls coming!!! We need EVERYONE to call to get this done! Make a difference! Make it count.
Here is how you do more:
CALL more Massachusetts HOUSE LEADERSHIP
- Rep. Haddad—very supportive—617-722-2600
- Speaker DeLeo—he is aware of the bill—seems to understand need for it—617-722-2500
- Rep. Reinstein—very supportive and a co sponsor—617-722-2180
- Rep. Moran (Boston and Brookline)—supportive and a co-sponsor— 617-722-2006
- Rep. Story (Amherst)—very supportive—617-722-2012
- Rep. Donato—seems supportive—617-722-2040
- Rep. Mariano—has always supported licensure bills—617-722-2300
- Rep. Jones—aide seems supportive—617-722-2100
- Rep. Rushing—617-722-2783
- Rep. Bradley—617-722-2520
Credit: Elinor Carucci/Redux, for The New York Times
"[Ina May] Gaskin says that because midwife-assisted home birth is illegal in many states, many women are de facto coerced into surgery or other interventions they don’t need. For Gaskin, choice in birth remains a realm of reproductive freedom that mainstream feminism, until recently, has foolishly ignored; women should seek not just the freedom to decide whether or not to have a baby but also how to have it. Here, Gaskin assists Jane Montanaro during labor, March 27."
- See the entire New York Times slide show here.
- Read the related New York Times article "Mommy Wars: The Prequel" here.
- Learn about the state of reproductive freedom birth options across the U.S. here.
- Join the movement today and help support efforts in your state here.
- Appreciate the amazing Ina May Gaskin even more here.
Shannon Earle holds her new baby Kiera Breen Earle, moments after she was born at their home. (Amanda Steen / NPR)
PushNews from The Big Push for Midwives Campaign
CONTACT: Katherine Prown, (414) 550-8025, [email protected]
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: January 26, 2012
CDC Finds Continued Increase in Home Births - Report Highlights Disparities in Access for Women of Color
WASHINGTON, D.C. (January 26, 2012)—A report released by the CDC today found a 29 percent increase in home births from 2004 to 2009. The rate of home births among non-Hispanic white women underwent a dramatic increase, while the rate for women of color decreased or remained stagnant, a trend that reflects racial and ethnic disparities in other areas of maternity care throughout the U.S.
"Unfortunately, the women who could most benefit from out-of-hospital midwifery care are those who are least likely to have access to Certified Professional Midwives with the specialized training needed to provide it," said Susan Jenkins, Legal Counsel for The Big Push for Midwives Campaign. "The CDC report and other research shows that babies born to women cared for by Certified Professional Midwives are far less likely to be preterm or low birth weight, two of the primary contributing factors not only to infant mortality, but to racial and ethnic disparities in birth outcomes."
Barriers to out-of-hospital maternity care include laws in 23 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico that prohibit Certified Professional Midwives from practicing, as well as laws or policies in all but 11 of the remaining states that deny Medicaid coverage for home births managed by Certified Professional Midwives.
"As we work to address disparities by increasing the cultural proficiency of midwives practicing in out-of-hospital settings and diversifying the midwifery work force, we also need to change laws nationwide so that all women have access to out-of-hospital maternity care with Certified Professional Midwives," said Jenkins. The Big Push for Midwives Campaign represents tens of thousands of grassroots advocates in the U.S. who support expanding access to Certified Professional Midwives and out-of-hospital maternity care. The mission of The Big Push for Midwives is to educate state and national policymakers and the general public about the reduced costs and improved outcomes associated with out-of-hospital maternity care and to advocate for expanding access to the services of Certified Professional Midwives, who are specially trained to provide it.
- Are you working toward licensure for Certified Professional Midwives in your state? Are you planning to?
- Are you concerned about the future of VBAC and HBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean and home birth after cesarean)?
- Have you been frustrated by lack of consensus and infighting within your local birth community?
- Have legislative road blocks, back-door dealings, and insider politics at the state capitol prevented your bill from advancing?
If the answer to any of these questions is YES, then please join us at the PushSummit, on August 6 in Cary, NC, to learn from veteran birth activists who’ve been there in the trenches and will share their insight, wisdom, experience, and not-so-dirty tricks!
Discounted student rates are available.
The Summit’s PushUniversity is a unique opportunity for people who want to become agents of change to learn from the birth community’s experts on everything from effective organizing tactics, to grassroots mobilization, to utilizing the media—as well as the many resources available via The Big Push for Midwives—to promote positive messages about midwifery and out-of-hospital birth and to build effective legislative campaigns that expand access to the full range of birth options for families nationwide. Groups in every state that are working to improve birth can benefit from sending a representative to the Summit, not only to learn but to share. All of us have valuable information to share, and every time we leave our virtual worlds to spend face-time together, it makes our community stronger. Hope to see you there, and please share this link widely! http://bit.ly/PushSummit2011
The Summit will take place alongside the MANA Region 3 conference, which has secured a special rate of $115 per room. Rooms can be booked at http://ncmidwife.org/MANARegion3Conf/?page_id=17
Please check your calendars and make plans to attend!
The Big Push for Midwives Campaign is pushing hard to ensure that Certified Professional Midwives are legally authorized to practice in all 50 states, D.C., Puerto Rico, and Guam.
And we're proud to push hard, since our opponents, ACOG and OBGYN PAC, are working so fiercely together, raising and spending money big hand over closed fist on ads, telemarketing calls, and direct contributions to legislators' campaign chests, all to protect the specific interests of its member OB/GYNs.
In 2010, ACOG's PAC raised nearly $900K and spent more than $680K of it (a 10-fold increase over what they raised for their honeypot just 8 years ago), and it's interesting to consider ACOG boasts that its PAC can raise as much as $30,000 in a single month and that hundreds of OBs from across the country donate to the PAC at the President's Club level of $5,000 each.
No wonder then that they achieved a 60% increase in the number of physicians elected to Congress in 2010, and no surprise that these OB-legislators have hit Capitol Hill pre-programmed with the messages put forth by recently-stepped-down ACOG President Richard N. Waldman, MD, whose focus for the 112th Congress was on "keeping our specialty safe from those would transform it," in other words, from those who advocate for access to midwives and out-of-hospital maternity care.
Heck, if you can't beat the high-quality, low-cost competition that Certified Professional Midwives bring to the maternity-care marketplace, just make your focus the absolute elimination of these nationally certified providers of out-of-hospital maternity care. (For those of you watching gobsmacked from home, you may not realize that working behind the scene, ACOG's lobbyists have already systematically stripped CPMs out of various Health Care bills – with nary an objection from the other maternity-care groups around the table that ACOG has already pushed down into submission.)
Give Hope to Mothers and Families
Please make a recurring monthly donation of $10 dollars to the Big Push for Midwives Campaign for the U.S. States and Territories that are pushing together for a nation of CPM birth options.
Goliath is well-financed, and the Big Push for Midwives Campaign needs your support this month and every month so that we may continue to provide vital "labor" support (in the form of legal counsel, media and general advocacy support, education and outreach) to the courageous mothers and families who sacrifice so much in order to push the CPM birth options movement ahead.
PLEASE DONATE TODAY.