Local MP Bell Ribeiro-Addy will tomorrow (14 September) open a special debate at the Houses of Parliament in London to mark Black Maternal Health Awareness Week.
The “Westminster Hall” debate she has obtained begins at 9:30am.
This week has also seen the launch of an all-party parliamentary group on Black maternal health, which is chaired by Ribeiro-Addy, the Labour MP for Streatham.
In April this year, she raised her own moving experience of stillbirth during parliament’s first ever debate on Black maternal health.
She called on the government not only to respect and care for Black women but to set binding targets to address the issues that means Black women are four times more likely to die during pregnancy and childbirth than white ones.
She today repeated this call and accused the government of refusing to listen to campaigners on the issue.
“The colour of a mother’s skin should have absolutely no impact on her health or her baby’s,” she said.
I’m really dismayed by the government’s lack of a specific plan to deal with the fact that Black women are four times more likely to die in childbirth or the other disparities we face.
“It shows they’re still not listening,” Ribeiro-Addy said.
“Black Maternal Health Awareness Week is a reminder that this problem isn’t just going to go away.
“We need to see binding commitments from the government to ensure that every woman is respected, protected and listened to during one of the most vulnerable periods of her life.”