Protecting human rights in childbirth

Recruiting new Legal Officer

Birthrights is the UK’s only organisation dedicated to improving women’s experience of pregnancy and childbirth by promoting respect for human rights. The Legal Officer is a new and critical role at Birthrights to manage our advisory and legal work, including running the advice service, overseeing strategic litigation and providing legal policy input with core stakeholders. This … Read more

New research: Disabled women need to be heard and respected as experts about their bodies

Research published today and commissioned by Birthrights shows that disabled women are generally not receiving the individualised care and support they that they need to make choices about their maternity care. Today’s publication includes and builds on the survey research published in 2016 which found that more than a quarter of disabled women asked felt … Read more

#Metoo shows we need trauma-informed maternity care

The outpouring of posts from survivors of sexual violence, assault and abuse as part of the grassroots #MeToo campaign underlines what many of us working in maternity care believe strongly. A significant number of women accessing important services in pregnancy and birth will have experienced trauma in their lives. And sadly, many of these individuals … Read more

How should Health Care Professionals handle a maternal request for caesarean?

It‘s been unusually noisy in the maternity world over the summer, as media reports have reignited discussion about what a “safe” birth looks like. At Birthrights we believe that the need to listen to women is the mast that all those who care about the safety of women and babies during birth, can cling to when the seas of … Read more

Do I have a right to a c-section? Update on Oxford University Hospitals

On 24th May we launched a campaign to engage with Trusts who state that they do not offer maternal request caesarean sections, thereby denying women the individual respect and consideration they are entitled to. The first Trust we wrote to was Oxford University Hospitals whose policy on offering planned caesarean sections is stated in this … Read more

Birthrights on Mumsnet

We’re really pleased to announce that we have not only updated our own set of factsheets, but have partnered with Mumsnet, to update our answers to their most frequently asked questions about rights relating to pregnancy and birth. You can find Mumsnet users’ questions and our answers here. Ranging from common concerns about the right to an epidural … Read more

Rapid Resolution and Redress scheme – consultation now open

A Rapid Resolution and Redress scheme was one of the key recommendations coming out of the Better Births report. This month the Department of Health has launched a consultation on this proposal. Currently families whose children have suffered severe injury due to negligent maternity care have to wait an average of 11.5 agonising years to … Read more

A view from India: Human Rights in Childbirth

Today is Human Rights Day 2016. Every year on the 10 December we commemorate the day on which, in 1948, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. So on this day, when we think about how we can stand up for human rights both here in the UK, and all over the world, … Read more

Maternity Care Failing Some Disabled Women

Research published today (15/09/16) by Bournemouth University and commissioned by Birthrights highlights how maternity care may not be meeting the needs of some pregnant disabled women. A survey of women with physical or sensory impairment or long term health conditions highlighted how  – despite most women rating the support they received from maternity health carers positively – … Read more

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