Rights as a Childbearing Woman
September 6, 2011 by enjoybirth
It’s come to my attention more than once in the past year, in stories related to us by our instructors, that our moms, birth partners and their babies are being coerced, or even threatened into compliance with certain state medical board mandates by members of their local medical community. I’ve heard of stories where our students are ‘challenged’ by medical authorities when voicing their preferences for their own treatment during childbirth, or their baby’s treatment (or lack of treatment) during the immediate postpartum period.
This is distressing to me as a woman and as someone who is entrusted with women’s education about such matters.
Note that the items marked with a single *asterisk are LEGAL rights that are upheld by courts in the entire U.S. The items with a **double asterisk are very likely to be upheld in courts.
The “Rights of Childbearing Women” brochure
spells out birthing women’s personal LEGAL rights…that no state health department’s ‘mandates’, or individual hospital’s ‘protocols’, or any one MD’s opinions, or a midwife’s temerity can fly in the face of…not even with veiled threats to call CPS, or the police like they do in some states.
This is a powerful tool for you.
If you know your LEGAL rights, and insist on them, CPS and even the police are rendered impotent in court. The more you are educated and empowered and insist on your LEGAL rights as childbearing women and as new parents, the less likely you will have them taken from you.
State mandated protocols about what is medically ‘safe’ and ‘necessary’ have been ‘wrong’ very many times in the past, and mothers and their babies have been harmed. For that reason, it’s important that PARENTS understand that YOU have the LEGAL right to the final say about how you give birth to your baby, and the right to make all decisions in your baby’s treatment during the immediate postpartum period.