The purpose of the event, according to the ABC website, is to raise awareness about what the group says is the need to change Alabama law and allow Certified Professional Midwives (CPMs), who are trained to provide out-of-hospital maternity care, to practice legally in the state.
“Families in Tennessee and Florida have been benefiting from the services of CPMs for years,” according to midwifery consumer and activist Susan Petrus, who says that she was forced to leave the state in order to deliver her last baby under the care of a CPM. “It is high time that Alabama families had the same opportunities.”
Certified Nurse Midwives (CNMs) are able to practice legally in all 50 states, including Alabama, according to the ABC. However, they can practice only in the hospital. The group says that families in the state who choose to give birth outside of the hospital, in some cases for religious or financial reasons, have no access to legally practicing CPMs.
In addition to the walk in Birmingham, the ABC is hosting walks in several other Alabama cities on Saturday, including Huntsville, Dothan, and Cullman. Those attending the Birmingham walk are encouraged to come to breakfast at Rojo at 8 a.m. For more information, contact (205) 902-8362 or visit www.alabamabirthcoalition.org