Friday, May 11, 2007

Calling all Illinois Home Birth Supporters

News just in regarding the CPM legislation that passed the Senate 51-7 last month in Illinois:

The bill (which would license Certified Professional Midwives in Illinois) is currently in the House Registration and Regulation committee and seems in danger of being killed. If any of my readers are from Illinois, please get your pens out ASAP! If you don't live in IL, but have friends or family who do, please ask them to participate. Instructions below:
Dear Homebirth and Midwifery Supporters:

We have gotten the news that the House Registration and Regulation committee
intends to kill our bill unless we take additional action. We are considering another amendment, but in the mean time, we need EVERYONE to write a letter to the individuals on the Reg and Reg committee, even if their own Rep is not on that committee. We must produce a packet of letter for each committee member, just bursting with letters from you - the midwives, doctors, doulas, childbirth educators and families who are effected by the homebirth crisis.

This should be a very simple letter to produce. You can recycle a previously sent letter and just change the date and add a few lines as listed below, or you can start fresh. If starting fresh, please pick up pen and paper, and then read the rest of this email. You'll be done before you know it! These letters should be addressed to “Dear Committee Member:” In the following sentence or two, identify yourself as a homebirth consumer or supporter.

Next, unless your Rep IS a committee member, indicate that you are not one of their constituents, but that it is your understanding that they represent the interests of all the people, the whole state, when working in committee.

Express your deep desire to see that your own state Representative is allowed to vote on this matter. Ask the Committee members to PLEASE allow Senate Bill 385, the Midwifery Licensure Act, Senator Haine's bill, to get to the floor so that your Rep can weigh in. If your Rep is a committee member, remind them there are many families in addition to you, many of whom are not their constituents, but are depending upon them to help make homebirth birth safer for them. Give some sort of plea to help the families who choose homebirth have a chance to have a safer experience, or access to all safe maternity care options, or something similar.

Sign off and send via email to
If you have a fax machine, please fax to 630.369.2456. Please do not use a cover sheet. If you have no fax, please drop a signed copy in the mail to Coalition for Illinois Midwifery, 901 E. Krage Drive, Addison, IL 60101 PLEASE DON'T DELAY! DO THIS TODAY OR TOMORROW AT LATEST.

We will take all these letters and distribute them in a packet to the Reg and Reg committee members early next week. WE STILL HAVE A CHANCE TO GET OUT OF THIS BILL OUT OF COMMITTEE WITH YOUR HELP!!! PLEASE HELP US, please write and help us show the State Medical Society just how strong we are!

Thank you,
Rachel Dolan Wickersham, CD, LCCE
President, Coalition for Illinois Midwifery


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