Safe Motherhood Quilt Project Display and Rally
HARRISBURG (April 17, 2012) – The Safe Motherhood Quilt Project will be on display on Friday, May 11th, from 9a.m. to 3p.m., with a press conference starting at 11a.m., in the Capitol Rotunda, Harrisburg. Internationally renowned midwife, author, and creator of The Safe Motherhood Quilt Project, Ina May Gaskin, will be speaking. Amnesty International, the Greater Harrisburg Area Birth Circle, the International Cesarean Awareness Network (ICAN Harrisburg), and other organizations will be represented.
The Safe Motherhood Quilt Project is a national initiative honoring women who have died of pregnancy-related causes since 1982. The quilt project draws public attention to the United States’ rising maternal death rates, as well as the gross underreporting of maternal deaths.
The United States ranks behind at least 39 other nations in maternal mortality rates according to a recent study published in The Lancet. In 2008, the United States reported 17 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births, up from 7.5 per 100,000 in 1982. African American women in the United States have 4 times the risk of dying from childbirth or childbirth related complications. Hispanic women in the United States, similarly, are 1.6 times more likely than non-Hispanic white women to die from pregnancy-related causes.
Following the display, the quilt will be moved to Dixon University on Front Street in Harrisburg from 5pm-9pm, for a fundraising cocktail reception, with noted speakers, book signing with Ina May Gaskin, musical entertainment, and silent auction. The Greater Harrisburg Area Birth Circle will be presenting the Laura Keaveny Safe Motherhood Award to a local and national mothers’ advocate.