Black Lives Matter: Put an End to State-Sponsored and Police ViolenceA Statement from the American College of Nurse-MidwivesSilver Spring, MD (June 2, 2020)
— The American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM) mourns the devastating and heartbreaking death of George Floyd and stands in solidarity with those calling for policies and strategies to dismantle systematic racism in a criminal justice system that enables senseless violence towards Black Americans. The deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and so many others before them are a haunting reminder of the prejudice and discrimination that remains deeply entrenched in our nation today. Black lives matter. As Americans we must all stand together to end state-sponsored violence and police brutality.
The convergence of a global pandemic disproportionately killing Black Americans and the preying on Black individuals by law enforcement are current examples of prejudice and social inequalities that shape much of American life. There are also racial disparities that affect our educational institutions, employment, and community services, among others. We are all “created equal.” We must all hold ourselves accountable and fervently defend these basic human rights. Racism is a public health crisis.
Midwives are committed to providing the highest levels of compassionate care to another human soul. Recognizing the structural forces that perpetuate racism and race-based disparities in health care, specifically as they relate to maternal health, members of ACNM are working to eliminate inequities in reproductive health and to improve positive health outcomes for Black, Brown, Indigenous, and all people of color.
ACNM is committing to the work of dismantling structural racism by recognizing and addressing historical and current racism within midwifery education, clinical practice, and institutions including ACNM. We stand accountable for the pain that has occurred as a result of racism in our organization. We are all having different experiences of the same reality, and we call on our organization and its members to prioritize supporting our friends, families, students, colleagues, communities, each other, and most especially, people who do not have the privilege of looking away from the fear, the trauma, and the grief.
We stand in solidarity with all organizations working to end oppression and racism.