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Protecting human rights in childbirth

Registered Charity Number 1151152

A great launch party

It’s been a week since our launch and we’ve hardly had time to take breath, or write a post about it! Here’s a summary and some photos.

Last Thursday, more than 120 key figures from the maternity services, including representatives from the Royal College of Midwives, Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists and the Royal College of Physicians, gathered at Matrix Chambers to officially launch Birthrights.

Birthrights founder, Elizabeth Prochaska, spoke about why childbirth is one of the ultimate feminist issues of our times, saying that women’s ability to make decisions must be trusted. She told the stories of vulnerable women who had experienced mistreatment in pregnancy and childbirth and she explained why her own, empowering birth experience led her to establish Birthrights. You can read her speech here.

We were very happy that Beverley Turner, writer and TV presenter who has spoken about her positive childbirth experiences joined the crowd. She said – “Birthrights is hugely exciting – a long overdue resource for women. There are far too many instances of women being misunderstood, misled or mistreated at a time when they may feel at their most vulnerable. Birthrights offers women information, support or simply the inspiration to assert their human rights. If the volume of chatter at the launch party is anything to go by, they’ll become a voice to be reckoned with!”

Obstetrician Amali Lokugamage, author of The Heart in the Womb, was one of the many health professionals who attended. She spoke to us the next day – “The Birthrights launch was very successful & busy … there seems to be so much interest in the issues of childbirth human rights at the moment. It seems to be reaching into some untapped streams of feminism concerning reproductive human rights. Respectful care of women and autonomy underlies this movement”.

Have a look at a selection of photos from the launch, taken by the very talented Simon Goldsworthy:

Elizabeth Prochaska, speaking at the Birthrights launch party
Elizabeth Prochaska, speaking at the Birthrights launch party
Lesley Page, President of the Royal College of Midwives at the Birthrights launch party
Lesley Page, President of the Royal College of Midwives at the Birthrights launch party
Professor Paul Lewis, midwife and board member of the Royal College of Midwives and Obi Omadi, Lead Professional at the Health Visitors Association
Professor Paul Lewis, midwife and board member of the Royal College of Midwives and Obi Omadi, Lead Professional at the Health Visitors Association
Rebecca Schiller and Elizabeth Prochaska, Co-Chairs of Birthrights
Rebecca Schiller and Elizabeth Prochaska, Co-Chairs of Birthrights
Beverley Beech, Chair of the Association for Improvements in Maternity Services
Beverley Beech, Chair of the Association for Improvements in Maternity Services
Annie Francis, director of Neighbourhood Midwives
Annie Francis, director of Neighbourhood Midwives

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