The undersigned black women make the following claims and demands of Mercy Health.
As black women and Missourians who organize to dismantle reproductive oppression, we write to express our outrage and demand accountability for the disrespect and unethical treatment of Missouri’s first black Certified Professional Midwife by Mercy Birthing Center Midwifery Care.
Brittany “Tru” Kellman, founder and executive director of Jamaa Birth Village in Ferguson, has been providing care and building a community to improve pregnancy outcomes in the St. Louis area since 2015. Tru centers black women and women of color in her practice, thus providing a path to healthy birth from within our community. She provides training and support, critical care and advice, and the cultural understanding that comes from her being a black woman and mother.
Jamaa Birth Village is a success story, and that has prompted many established groups and organizations to reach out with offers of support or opportunities to collaborate. Such was the case with Elizabeth Cook, CNM, and director of Mercy Birthing Center Midwifery Care.