DECIDE WHAT IS IMPORTANT TO YOU
Inform yourself (using more than one source) – read, discuss and research areas that are important to you.
Determine what feels right for you.
Ask for what you want and keep asking. If you meet resistance, there are organisations that may be able to help you – see the key groups here -if there isn’t a link for one in your country, please let us know and we will add one
SPEAK UP. COMMUNICATION WITH THOSE AROUND YOU IS VITAL IN AFFECTING CHANGE AND INFLUENCING SOCIAL ATTITUDES TO BIRTH.
Tell others about your positive birth experiences or recommend Birth Stories and other positive birth films to your friends.
Use Facebook and other social media to pass messages, stories and events about your chosen area, share the Face of Birth facebook page and other birth organisations with your friends.
The Face of Birth, Birth Stories and Meet The Experts are excellent resources. Share these DVDs with others by organising a screening in your area. Let’s get a screening in every city of the world to spread the word about the power of choice.
Start your own petition to gain the support of the community.
Develop local groups to share stories, support each other.
Ask to meet with management of your local maternity unit and ask how you can be involved as consumers in supporting change
SPEAK TOGETHER AND SPEAK OUT: – COMMUNICATING WITH A CLEAR VOICE TO THOSE IN POSITIONS OF INFLUENCE IS VITAL TO CREATE CHANGE.
Join with others to lobby for maternity reform. There are many organisations working to improve choices for women in childbirth. They need your support. Each organisation has its own focus. Find the one that best represents your point of view and offer your support. Some groups are listed here – . – if there isn’t a link for one in your country, please let us know what you would like to add’
Ask to meet with the management of your local maternity unit and ask how you can be involved as a consumer in supporting change.
Form consumer support groups to support your local services (sometimes these run out of our hospitals) or set up independent consumer support groups for birth in a certain area. For example mums@ryde in NSW have kept a Ryde midwifery unit open for women to have a birth in a small non interventionist environment.
TALK TO THE MEDIA
Write to your local newspaper, Write letters to the editor every time there is a maternity related issue in the paper. Contact local journalists to report on events you organise.
TALK TO THE POLITICIANS
Ann Catchlove, President of the Maternity Coalition has written a guide to writing political letters. Click below to download it.
Download Guide to Political Writing (53 KB)
Write to your local member of parliament (both state and federal) about maternity issues in your area. Write to the Federal Health Minister about the issues that are important to you.
Keep on keeping on.
Lobby groups will not stop trying to change things to suit them, and they have huge resources. If you want things to change it is up to you to persist until you succeed.