Families Rally for Alaska Midwifery: A Stand Against Government Overreach in Birth Choices

Alaskan Families Rally for Midwifery

In a surprising move, Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy has issued executive orders to eliminate various boards across the state, including the Board of Certified Direct-Entry Midwives. This decision has sparked concern among many Alaskan families who rely on midwives for quality prenatal care and safe birthing options. As someone born at a home birth with a midwife in Fairbanks and seeing the uncaring and mechanical nature of hospitals, like Death Valley in the Matsu, I find it disheartening to see the governor undermining the very professionals who provide crucial support to families during this special time.

The Board of Certified Direct-Entry Midwives consists of five members, including certified direct-entry midwives, a certified nurse midwife, an obstetrician, and a public member. These board members are appointed by the governor and confirmed by the legislature to regulate and monitor midwives, ensuring that they adhere to national standards set by the North American Registry of Midwives. The board has also been working with State Rep. Jamie Allard on HB 175, a bill aimed at aligning Alaska’s midwifery regulations with national standards and state regulations.

Alaska’s Midwifery Battle: A Fight for Freedom and Tradition

The governor’s executive order claims that the elimination of the Board of Midwives is in the best interest of efficient administration and transfers its powers to the Department of Commerce, Community & Economic Development. However, it is unclear how a state administrator would be able to provide the same level of expertise and oversight as the specialized board. The board’s cumulative knowledge and experience in the field of midwifery are invaluable in ensuring the safety and quality of care for Alaskan families.

The Midwives Association of Alaska (MAA) has voiced their opposition to the elimination of the Board of Midwives, expressing their surprise and requesting transparency and reconsideration from the Dunleavy Administration. They argue that the board’s expenses are outweighed by the cost savings they bring to the state through the care provided by certified direct-entry midwives. According to the Alaska Vital Statistics Annual Report 2022, the cost savings to the state from the care of certified direct-entry midwives is approximately 192 times the cost of administering the board.

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Alaska has developed a unique niche for midwives in its healthcare system, with Alaskans being four times more likely to choose a birth setting supported by midwives compared to the national average. Numerous studies have shown positive outcomes associated with licensed midwives’ care, including lower intervention rates, lower cesarean rates, higher rates of breastfeeding initiation and continuation, and greater client satisfaction with the birthing experience.

Government Overreach in Birth Choices

It is essential for Alaskans to take action to preserve their medical freedom and the freedom of choice for their families. We must make it clear to Governor Dunleavy that direct government control over birthing options is not acceptable to Alaskans who value personal freedoms and autonomy. This is not only a pro-life issue but also an issue of respecting the rights of Alaskan women to choose the care that is best for them and their families.

Even if the governor does not reverse his decision, the executive order can only stand if it is ratified by the state legislature. Alaskans must reach out to their local senators and representatives and urge them to vote against EO 130. It is crucial to make our voices heard and protect the self-regulation of the Board of Certified Direct-Entry Midwives.

To contact Governor Dunleavy, call (907) 465-3500 or send a message through the provided link. To reach your local representatives, visit the given website and enter your address to find their contact information.

"The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me." - Psalm 28:7

Let us act today to ensure that government control does not encroach on the birthing options of Alaskan mothers and families. Our voices matter, and together we can make a difference.

FAQs:

Q: What is the role of the Board of Certified Direct-Entry Midwives?
The board is responsible for regulating and monitoring midwives in Alaska, ensuring that they adhere to national standards and state regulations. Their expertise and oversight contribute to the safety and quality of care provided by midwives.

Q: Why is the elimination of the Board of Midwives concerning?
Without the specialized knowledge and experience of the board members, it is unclear how the Department of Commerce, Community & Economic Development can provide the same level of oversight and regulation. This raises concerns about the quality and safety of midwifery care in Alaska.

 

Q: How can I voice my opposition to EO 130?
You can contact Governor Dunleavy by phone or through the provided link to express your concerns. Additionally, reach out to your local senators and representatives, urging them to vote against the executive order. Your voice can make a difference in protecting medical freedom and the rights of Alaskan families.

Key Takeaway: Alaskan families must take action to preserve their medical freedom and the choice of midwifery care. Governor Dunleavy’s decision to eliminate the Board of Midwives undermines the expertise and self-regulation of certified direct-entry midwives. Contacting the governor and local representatives, and urging them to vote against EO 130, can help protect the rights of Alaskan women and their families.

Remember to check back for updates on this ongoing story.

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