The Big Push for Midwives

Here is the main website for “The Big Push“; and here is a good summary article of the future that midwives and midwifery face. If you’re on FaceBook, you can “join the cause” and “join the cause” from The Big Push website. [And if you have FaceBook, you can also become a fan of Permission to Mother, by Dr. Denise Punger. If you like attachment parenting, cloth diapering, breastfeeding, etc., this will be right up your alley.]

In the article, some of the interesting factoids are that currently exactly half of the states have legalized Certified Professional Midwives (the main midwives that home births; although some CNMs do, and probably many more would except they would lose their bread-and-butter hospital positions if they did [and I’m not blaming them for doing so — I understand they need to eat, too!]), with a few states having upcoming legislation that if passed would legalize CPMs in those states. North Carolina, Idaho, and Illinois all have measures that may be brought up — and the latter two have altered previously failed bills to change wording so that organizations that previously opposed the measures now approve them or at least have dropped their opposition.

One problem is that many times CNMs and their organizations stand opposed to CPMs and legalizing CPMs. This article shows it, by a statement by ACNM President Melissa Avery, in speaking for her organization, which agrees that home birth should be allowed, but only if attended by CNMs or someone with equivalent training.

Recently on another blog, a CNM bemoaned the lack of unity among midwives, and said that many home-birthers view CNMs as “the enemy” or “medwives” unless they personally attend home-births. I responded, asking for her further thoughts on the statement, which she gave here. She says that if a woman came to her wishing to change care to a home-birthing CPM, she would be personally supportive of it. [“May her tribe increase!”]

Still, in view of the statement by the ACNM president, as well as the opposition from other CNMs or nursing groups I’ve heard of when CPM legislation is up in some states (which this article mentions as well), it is not surprising that many if not most home-birthing advocates view CNMs as supportive only of hospital birth and/or nurse-midwife only attended home birth.

I, too, wish for more unity among midwives and midwifery advocates. Here’s hoping!

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