May 30, 2012

Childbirth as a Human Rights Issue.

Photo: University of Salford

Expressed in an important film.

The film by One World Birth looks at human rights as it pertains to women and childbirth.

And the imprisonment of Agnes Gereb, the Hungarian midwife. She has over three thousand births under her belt, yet because homebirth is illegal in Hungary she sits imprisoned in her own home.

But the film also goes beyond Agnes’s plight. It looks at birth throughout the Western world.

This is an issue close to my own heart. As a childbirth educator, I see women every day who feel like they’ve been steamrolled by the system. Women who feel like everything during their birth was done to them and not for them.

I see women who are told they are not “allowed” to eat food as they labor; not “allowed” to walk or get out of bed during labor (as routine procedure); not “allowed” to have the support team they need; women who’s concerns are brushed off; women who have been told they are inadequate and are not “allowed” to try to labor at all; women who have been sent for c-section because they are laboring too long…

This is way beyond feminism, or civil rights—these are human rights. Compassion begins at birth.

“Birth isn’t something we suffer, but something we actively do and exult in.”

~Sheila Kitzinger


One World Birth needs to raise money for this film. If you are interested in helping, please click here.

Also check out what Lamaze International is up to with their new campaign, Push for Your Baby. Makes me proud to be part of the Lamaze organization.

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Editor: Lynn Hasselberger

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