A coup has been scored for women's rights in British Columbia, Canada! At Gloria Lemay's injunction hearing on Feb. 2 in Vancouver, Canada, it was ruled that Gloria can lawfully attend births and receive payment for her services. Now British Columbia women can freely choose their birth attendant, and know their choice is protected by precedent of law. A robust RIGHT ON for Gloria, and for the free-thinking, birth-loving women of BC!
For those of you who have been following my court activities with the B.C. College of Midwives, the hearing went very well. At 9:00 a.m. we had a drum circle on the front steps of the B. C. Law Courts building. Little girls were wearing signs saying "Keep Your Laws Off My Body," "My Mom Had an Illegal Home Birth," etc. We went into court at 10 a.m.
My lawyer told the judge that women have struggled in Canada to be allowed access to birth control, to be allowed to decide whether or not to keep a pregnancy and they should be allowed to decide with whom they will give birth in the privacy of their own home should they choose to have that baby. The judge agreed. He has granted an injunction to the College of Midwives preventing me from holding myself out to be a registrant of the College. This is something I have *never* done nor would ever do, so it's fine with me. He also said anyone can go to a birth and help out for a fee.
The lawyer for the College of Midwives at one point inadvertently referred to me as Ms. Midwife--shows how easy it is to slip and use that forbidden word. No costs were levied. I am permitted to be a midwifery teacher. I am one happy "private birth attendant."
Our context for this whole exercise was "integrity." It really paid off and I'm really proud of my lawyers and myself. Thanks for all the prayers, moral support and financial contributions. I'm so grateful to not be in debt at the end of all of this. I think it will now open up the possibility of more women in the province returning to their jobs as birth attendants.
My heart fills with love and gratitude for all the support. T H A N K Y O U!
Reprinted from Midwifery Today E-News (Vol 2 Issue 5, Feb 4, 2000)
To subscribe to the E-News write: email@example.com
For all other matters contact Midwifery Today:
PO Box 2672-940, Eugene OR 97402
541-344-7438, firstname.lastname@example.org, Midwifery Today