Safe Pregnancy and Birth for All: Addressing Racism in Reproductive Healthcare

Most maternal deaths are entirely preventable, yet today still almost 800 women die a day globally from complications related to pregnancy and childbirth. Despite global gains, recent research from UNFPA highlights that maternal mortality has in fact risen in the Americas by about 15% and birthing people of African descent are notably overrepresented.

Taking a reproductive justice approach, this virtual panel will explore the causes and consequences of these racial disparities in reproductive healthcare, identifying effective strategies to eradicate inequalities and ensure quality healthcare for all.

ūüďÜ January 29, 2024 at 12:00-1:00pm ET¬†

ūüĆź Simultaneous French interpretation will be available.¬†

ūüĒó Register here.¬†

On behalf of Action Canada for Sexual Health and the United Nations Population Fund, we are excited to have you join this discussion. 


Althea Jones, President-Elect of Association of Ontario Midwives and ED of Ancestral Midwives 

Althea Jones is a registered midwife with 10 years of experience and the driving force behind Ancestral Hands Midwives, a non-profit led by Black midwives that addresses reproductive health disparities. The midwives serve Black communities by providing respectful, racially concordant care. Jones envisions a future where there are more Black health-care providers, where Black communities have access to safe, quality, racially concordant care, and where Black midwives continue to lead in reproductive health care. 

Mohini Datta-Ray, Executive Director of Planned Parenthood Toronto 

Mohini became ED at PPT in 2021. Her past roles include ED North York Women’s Shelter, one of Toronto’s oldest shelters for survivors of gender-based violence , Director, Provincial Women and HIV/AIDS Initiative; Toronto Women and HIV/AIDS Coordinator at the AIDS Committee of Toronto; and Prevention Education Coordinator at the Alliance for South Asian AIDS Prevention. Mohini’s past work has seen her lead HIV community development, prevention education, youth-focused sex education and healthy relationship projects with a number of communities impacted by racism and poverty in Toronto and Ontario. 

Anna Balagtas, Co-Founder, Pocket Doula 

Anna (she/they) is a first-generation queer, non-binary Filipina settler on the ancestral lands of the Attawandaron/Chonnonton, the Anishinaabe, and Haudenosaunee peoples and the treaty lands and territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit (Guelph, ON). Anna is a radical doula, reproductive justice advocate, educator, and communications creative with their practice rooted in queer decolonial carework and the prioritization of QTBIPGM wellness, equity, and abundance. In 2020, Anna founded Pocket Doula, a landing space for folks to learn more about reproductive justice and birthwork in the Canadian context. In 2021, they became the Executive Director of Cornerstone Birthwork Canada in which they develop training and curriculum focused on full spectrum birthwork.  

Patricia Da Silva, Programme Adviser for UNFPA's Initiative for People of African Descent   

Moderated by Carly Weeks, Globe & Mail. 

Poster for webinar "Safe Pregnancy and Birth for All: Addressing Racism in Reproductive Healthcare"
Posted on 2023-12-20
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