Here in Tennessee, Certified Professional Midwives practice legally and with an impressive amount of autonomy.
That will change if we do not fight.
Our midwifery council is governed by the board of osteopaths, and it appears that they may be seeking greater regulations concerning practice guidelines, so prosecution of midwives is more clear cut. As it stands, CPM's must have a "collaborative" relationship with a doctor, but the doctor has no liability, or say in who can see a midwife. These new regulations, among other things, will demand that midwives have ob/gyn backup, which will not happen as long as ACOG speaks out against homebirth. Without backup, a CPM will be practicing illegally. If that wasn't enough to suppress homebirth, it is also left up to doctors to decide who is considered a low-risk candidate for midwifery care. As you can imagine, that is never going to happen.
To fight this, we are forming the Tennessee Birth Coalition, a non-profit lobbying group for birthing rights. We need volunteers, exposure, and donations. We are in the organizing phase, so it is a bit hectic and there are a few women/families, doing A LOT of work. We need help.
First of all, join the Tennessee Birth Coalition Yahoo Group. This is a good way to keep up and get involved.
Second, if you know someone on any level of government that may lend us support, contact me with their information and I will get it to the appropriate people.
Share this on Facebook and forward it to anyone and everyone on your email list.
If you are outside of Chattanooga, help us get a group started in your area. If you have received or are receiving midwifery care outside of Chattanooga, make sure your midwife is aware and involved. Let her know you are concerned.
I am the head of the fund-raising committee. If you have any ideas for fundraisers, would like to offer something at your business, etc., or would like to make a donation (however small, we need it all!), PLEASE contact me.
Or if you would just like to make me a batch of oatstraw infusion, lol! I know the nutritive herbs are going to be my greatest allies right now.
My contact info: email@example.com
If you are a homebirther or a friend of midwifery, THIS IS THE TIME FOR ACTION! We can not let politics force midwifery underground!
Mothers and babies have a RIGHT to safe birth!
These are pictures of my most recent homebirth (tipi-birth, actually), August 2008
Thankful am I, for the loving care of midwives!