MomsRising’s Tina Sherman: Congress Must Pass a Budget that Prioritizes the Health of Mothers and Babies
“America’s moms are looking to Congress to pass a budget that includes long overdue investments that will alleviate our country’s maternal health crisis, which is affecting communities of color the most. It is unacceptable that the United States has the highest rate of maternal deaths during labor and delivery of any developed nation, and that Black women’s maternal mortality rate is four times that of white women. There is no reason why -- in the richest country in the entire world -- systemic disparities and implicit bias in the health care system continue to take such a terrible toll. Congress must address this crisis with the urgency it deserves.
“It is also shameful and unjust that due to systemic barriers, fewer than half of women in the United States are still breastfeeding at six months postpartum, which research shows boosts maternal and infant health. Lack of paid leave, workplace accommodations, and lactation support prevent many women, especially women of color, from reaching their breastfeeding goals. Today we kick off Black Breastfeeding Week coupled with National Breastfeeding Month, and moms are crying out for change. The time for action is now.
“Congress must make the health of moms and infants a top priority in the next budget. That means making the investments in the Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act, which would address every dimension of our maternal health crisis. We must also build the care infrastructure moms need to meet their breastfeeding goals, including paid family and medical leave. MomsRising will not stop fighting until Congress makes the investments we need to prioritize the health of mothers and babies.”