Worrying Rates of Maternal Mortality for Women of Color


Maternal mortality in America is at an all-time high, as mothers die in childbirth at rates higher than in any other developed country. And African-American women are three to four times more at risk than white women. Factors such as socioeconomic status and education influence these statistics, but after Serena Williams and Beyoncè’s disclosure of their struggles during pregnancy, the issue of racism emerges more clearly. The institutionalized discrimination against women of color produces environments where they are not taken seriously, not heard, and their pain is dismissed. On top of the fact that many hospitals are still unprepared for maternal emergencies, a lack of maternity leave forces new mothers to rush their prenatal and postpartum care. These maternal deaths are preventable and usually caused by treatable conditions. The issue shines a light on the effects of a lacking, discriminatory healthcare system on women of color in America.  

For Further Reading:

Here you can read the investigation conducted by NPR and ProPublica on maternal mortality in the United States.


Discussion Question:

Why do you think it seems like maternal mortality isn’t a priority for our government and our healthcare system?


Action Item:

Sign this petition and tell Congress to end preventable maternal deaths in America.



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