Community-based doulas play an important role in helping decrease maternal and infant mortality rates and increase breastfeeding rates. These women are trained to provide peer support to other women in their communities throughout pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding and early parenting.
Too often, organizing work done by incarcerated women goes wholly unrecognized. In her book, “Resistance Behind Bars: The Struggles of Incarcerated Women,” Victoria Law focuses on the many forms of activism happening inside of women’s prisons, most of which never reach the dominant media. In the following interview, Law shares ways in which individual acts of resistance are building toward a transformational new reality.
Shafia Monroe speaks wit’ the Block Report about how to stay healthy during pregnancy and the need for more Black midwives and doulas in the nation. Blacks have by far the highest infant mortality rates, with 17 of every 1,000 Black babies dying in their first year, compared with 3-4 in other communities. Learn more and meet keynoter Erykah Badu – who herself is a doula – at the ninth annual International Black Midwives and Healers Conference Oct. 9-11 in Portland, Oregon.
Despite being prisoners of the state of Mississippi, we have the right to receive prompt medical treatment, clean clothes to wear, a clean and safe living environment and access to our families. The Mississippi Department of Corrections may not care about my health, but my health is important to me and my family. When I came into this system I was healthy and I plan to leave healthy! I will not give up until I receive the medical care I deserve.
“Florida’s infant mortality rate is at an all-time low,” reports the Tampa Tribune. So is Cuba’s, according to Prensa Latina. In Miami, the infant mortality rate dropped from 6.4 out of every 1,000 live births in 2011 to 6 in 2013. “State health officials credit improved prenatal and infant health care for the good news,” says the Tribune. By that measure, Cuba’s prenatal and infant health care must be much better than Miami’s, where 34 percent of the population is Cuban.