Monday, April 4, 2011

Coming Soon: a National Coalition of Student Midwives

I could easily write two dozen posts processing and responding to what I heard at the "Gentle Birth is a Human Rights Issue" conference of Midwifery Today. Unfortunately, though it would be really useful for me personally and possibly useful for other folks if I did that, I likely won't be able to spare that kind of time for a while.

I will pass along this bit of news, however, because it is oh-so-relevant and plus very cutting edge! I'm sure we'll all be hearing more about this, but one of the things that came out of this conference was the push to start a National Coalition for/of Student Midwives (don't quote me on the name, it may morph as it takes shape but that's what was being tossed around this weekend) which will draft a Bill of Rights for student midwives and act as a protective body that holds proctors and educational programs to a standard that respects the rights of student/apprentice midwives.

Many students experience various forms of abuse at the hands of their preceptors and as of now have no way to raise their hand for help without putting themselves in an even worse position with their preceptors. This new body will provide protection and anonymity for those students, as well as a clear set of standards and rights.

I'm curious to hear what more comes of it and will share any information as it comes my way. This national coalition is the inspiration of Elizabeth Davis in response to the reports she has heard from many students and their expressed inability to stand up for themselves without putting themselves in the line of further fire.


  1. WOO-HOO!!! I was only able to attend the two days of pre-conference modules so i missed the larger discussion but i am SO excited to hear this. I have been thinking of a post in this direction off and on the last couple of days and i am really looking forward to hearing more about this. PLEASE tell everything you know!!!

  2. Oh great, what did you attend? Do please feel encouraged to share any pearls you gleaned, as well. I think doing so solidifies our learning and also enriches the discourse for everyone. Conferences a great for disseminating different ways of looking at things and new research and approaches, so its up to those of us who attend them to be mindful bearers of the information for others who don't. (Saying that for myself as much as for you!)