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New Diversification and Inclusion Report Released

Dear ACNM member,

With the ACNM 60th Annual Meeting & Exhibition just around the corner, I am looking forward to being in the company of so many amazing midwives and to the rich conversations we have when we are gathered.

So much has happened in the last year, both within ACNM and in the larger US culture, with regards to race and equity. At ACNM we have been actively exploring how to become a more multicultural organization since the formation of our Diversification and Inclusion Task Force in 2012. Since we were last together in Denver, tragic events in Ferguson, Baltimore, and all-too-many other cities have sparked important conversations about the meaning of race and place, and their impact on the health of women and families. These events make the conversation within our professional community all the more important. How does our work as individual midwives and as a community fit within this larger cultural context?

In 2014, ACNM conducted a diversity and inclusion assessment, which included personal interviews, focus groups, and a survey of our members, conducted by ACNM's Diversification and Inclusion consultant Jodi DeLibertis, of Greater Good Consulting. The results of this assessment have been compiled in a new report, "Shifting the Frame: A Report on Diversity and Inclusion in ACNM." This report, which also includes a letter of reflection from the ACNM Board of Directors, and other resources are available on our new Diversification and Inclusion web page.

"Shifting the Frame," and the ongoing conversations of this initiative, have given me a clearer picture of who we are as an association. I hope you'll take some time to read the report and join the conversation about who we are now and who we want to be in the future. To do so, join a discussion online on ACNM's Town Hall listserv. Or, for those of you attending the ACNM 60th Annual Meeting, please consider:

Friday, June 26, 12-6pm: If I Hadn't Believed It, I Wouldn't Have Seen It: Culture, privilege, and organizational transformation. Free Half-day Workshop with Jodi DeLibertis

Saturday, June 26 - Tuesday, June 30: Exhibit Hall hours. ACNM Member Resource Center in the Exhibit Hall. Talk with Task Force members about the report, share personal experiences, distribute call for papers for special issue Journal of Midwifery & Women's Health November/December 2016 issue on matters of diversification and inclusion.

Monday, June 29, 9:30-11:30am: Opening Business Meeting. ACNM CEO Lorrie Kaplan will discuss the new Strategic Plan, in which Diversification and Inclusion is identified as a Core Commitment.

Monday, June 29, 1-2pm: Education Session: ACNM 2014 Diversification and Inclusion Task Force: Member Survey Results and Lessons Learned (includes a review of next steps under our strategic plan).

Monday, June 29, 2:30-3:30pm: Open Forum on Diversification and Inclusion, facilitated conversations about diversification and inclusion as they apply to multiple arenas.

Tuesday, June 30, 8:30-9:30am: Premier Session: Bending the Arc Towards Justice: From Health Disparities to Health Equity, by Vernellia Randall, BSN, MSN, JD; Sinsi Hernandez-Cancio, JD; and Jodi DeLibertis, Principal, Greater Good Consulting.

This assessment process has reminded me of midwifery's core values and practices relating to person-centeredness, patience, deep listening, and holistic thinking. These values are essential to conversations that promote healing, learning, and growth. I'm confident that these are the same values that will enable ACNM to become a truly multicultural association. And I can't think of a better place to have this important, and in-person discussion than at the ACNM 60th Annual Meeting.

I look forward to seeing you at the meeting, or hearing from you on our Town Hall listserv.

Warm regards,

Ginger Breedlove, CNM, PhD, ARNP, FACNM
President, American College of Nurse-Midwives

American College of Nurse-Midwives
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