Birth Equity Nassau April Newsletter

Birth Equity Breakfast Attendees

Hello Birth Justice Warriors and Advocates!

April 29, 2019

Black Maternal Health Week is a Wrap!

Black Maternal Health Week 2019 was celebrated in style in Nassau County! The Second Annual Birth Equity Breakfast event, chaired by Birth Justice Warriors co-founders  Dr. Martine Hackett and Dr. Nellie Taylor-Walthrust, had representation from various birth organizations across New York City and Long Island, as well as state legislature. Assemblywoman Michaelle Solages  was on hand to remind all in attendance about the importance of involving the government when advocating to make injustice invisible, as is the mission of the Birth Justice Warriors. Thank you Assemblywoman Solages for supporting birth workers and black women in Nassau County!
Hakima Tafunzi Payne, or Mama Hakima as she is fondly known, is the Executive Director and founder of Uzazi Village in Kansas City, MO. Mama Hakima extolled the attendees on the importance of freeing ourselves from the expectations and stereotypes placed on us by the world and being our authentic, unapologetic black selves as we spread the message of equity for all in childbirth.
The event wrapped up with a look back at some of the accomplishments of the Birth Justice Warriors as we celebrated our first birthday and a charge to continue the fight to make injustice visible in Nassau County, in New York State and nationwide.

Cross-section of Death by Delivery Screening Attendees

L-R: Joann Smith, Executive Director and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Nassau County,  Martine Hackett, Rewa Thompson, Sharelle Allen and Takiya Ballard

On April 4, 2016, Planned Parenthood of Nassau County hosted and co-sponsored with the Birth Justice Warriors and Hofstra University’s National Public Health Week, a screening and panel discussion of the short film, Death by Delivery . This film, which highlighted the battle that it takes to birth while black in the United States was very well received by an enraptured and moved audience of over 70 concerned citizens.
The panel discussion after brought the issue local to Nassau County and focused on what needs to change to improve the startling statistics that is the reality of Black mothers and babies in the county. The take home message from this event came as a consensus from panelists; Takiya Ballard of Sakina Midwifery, Sharelle Allen of Strong Youth and Rewa Thompson of Planned Parenthood and it was this, “Listen to Black Women”. 

Nassau County Legislator Kevan Abrahams at the Hofstra National Public Health Week Health Fair

•   There will be a new Birth Justice Warriors training on July 18 and 19. Applications will go live in the first week of May. Apply here
• The Birth Justice Warriors will be a part of the Long Island Women’s Diversity Summit on May 4th. To get tickets to this wonderful event that features speakers of color in different fields on Long Island, here
•  Assemblywoman Michaelle Solages and Dr. Martine Hackett had a chat about the work of the Birth Justice Warriors. Full interview here
• The Long Island Herald also highlighted the importance work of the Birth Justice Warriors in Nassau County. Read the full article here
•   Conversation Cafe trainings are ongoing. If you would like a Conversation Cafe hosted in your community, please contact Te-Ana.

Spread the word!

Our fabulous logo is an award winner created by Jim Wagner of Certainly Studio in NYC 

The Birth Equity Nassau Newsletter is written by Tari Ajeh, MPH and edited by Martine Hackett, PhD, MPH.

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