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Updated: Oct 11, 2020




We are thrilled to inform everyone that SB 1237 was voted on in the Assembly and the Senate on 8/31 and it passed both houses. Thank you to each and every one of you who supported this process. We can all take a deep breath for the moment!! One final step is a signature from the Governor which usually occurs within 30 days of passage. Most bills go into effect on January 1st of the following year.

One immediate and hugely impactful change will be that small business owner CNMs in the community setting will no longer need a supervisory agreement with an MD. It took us 4 bills and 5 years to get here, but WE DID IT!! Your CNMA leadership team knows there is a lot of work to do in the implementation of this legislation and we will work with the BRN and other stakeholders to ensure they understand all the important nuances of CNM practice in CA. Please join us for our Virtual Annual Meeting on 9/26 so we can share more information about this process and celebrate the passing of the bill with all of you!!!

Kathleen Belzer, CNMA President

Holly Smith, CNMA HP Chair

Paris Maloof-Bury, CNMA President Elect

Liz Donnelly, CNMA HP Vice Chair


Annual Meeting Update

Please Note Change of Annual Meeting Date:

September 26, 2020, 10:00 AM - 12:30 PM

!!Mark Your Calendars!!

Registration to Follow Soon

This change was made because Rosh Hashanah is Sept 19th

Our CNMA Annual Meeting will be held virtually this year. We look forward to celebrating the passage of SB1237 (fingers crossed), and doing a deep dive into what the Justice and Equity in Maternity Care Act will mean for midwives in California. We will also be offering an educational component, complete with 1 CEU focused on antiracism in midwifery. We look forward to seeing you there!


Membership Update

Join CNMA today! Being a member has many benefits including access to your local chapter meetings, CEU materials, reduced rates to annual meetings, and most importantly, an entire state-wide group of volunteer midwives working hard every day to improve the lives of all CA midwives and advocate for our profession and our clients! Your dues will directly fund our legislative efforts, specifically the passing of our bill SB 1237 to remove physician supervision, as well as anti-racism efforts to reduce disparities within our communities. Visit to join today!!

CNMA recognizes that engagement by and leadership from midwives of color is integral to the development and advancement of the midwifery profession. Midwives of color use the discount code CA2020 to get free CNMA membership through the end of 2020.

Attention students and retirees! Your involvement in CNMA is truly invaluable. Therefore, we have reduced our student and retiree rates. Student rates have been dropped to $60 and retiree rates have been dropped to $50. Join today!

If you have any questions, please email our membership chair, Emily Carter at


CNMA Stands with the Black Lives Matter Movement - We Demand Justice for Jacob Blake.

Last week, another Black man was shot by police in an act of state-sanctioned, racist violence. Jacob Blake's life matters, and we stand in solidarity with Jacob in his fight to heal, with his children and family as they are dealing with this trauma, and with our Black sisters and brothers across this country. But our thoughts and prayers are not enough.

Here in California, non-Black midwives of all racial identities must work nationally and locally to prevent and mitigate the harm experienced by our Black family, friends, colleagues and community members. We must examine ourselves through reflection, humility, and honesty to recognize how each of us participates in racism, and then interrupt those patterns of white supremacy within ourselves.

We can take simple actions today: remaining vigilant to the obvious or subtle injustices experienced by the clients we serve so that we can effectively advocate for our clients both clinically and within our communities. We can create space for our clients to express their frustration and pain at what is (and has been) happening in our country. We can offer evidence-based strategies to help heal the trauma caused by toxic racism that we know increases risks for mortality and morbidity. We can put our bodies and our time on the line by joining in protests with Black Lives Matter. We can donate money and resources to the Black-led organizations that are doing this work. We must also commit to the long term practice of antiracism work. We must do the hard internal work to uproot unrecognized bias and to commit to diversification of our profession. And we can listen to the voices of Black midwives and follow their leadership.

Michelle Drew, DNP, MPH, CNM, FNP-C, the Chair of the ACNM Caucus of Black Midwives for Reproductive Justice, recently posted the following message on ACNM Townhall.We encourage all our members to read “We're so Tired Thoughts for our Wisconsin Colleagues.”

Michelle and others on the Caucus are working within ACNM to advocate for Black midwives, and for the Black families and individuals we all serve. If you identify as a Black midwife, please consider joining the Caucus. They are leaders in the work that our profession so desperately needs.

Take action today:

Call local officials and demand justice:

Kenosha City Attorney: 262-653-4170

Kenosha Mayor and City Administration: 262-653-4000

Wisconsin Department of Justice: (608) 266-1221

Kenosha Police Non Emergency Line: 262-656-1234

Commit to Long Term Antiracist Action and self reflection:


Spotlight on Anti-Racism

CNMA is working towards becoming an antiracist organization. In 2019 new bylaws were approved that recognize CNMA’s responsibility to actively address racism and the resulting health inequalities suffered by communities of color. Importantly, we must actively support efforts to increase racial diversity in our profession while engaging actively in self-education. “Spotlight on Antiracism” is a new section of the newsletter where you will find a monthly educational offering. We encourage our membership to check it out and share widely in your workplaces.

Last month we explored white privileges with the classic, White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack, by Peggy McIntosh. This month we recommend our members go deeper by exploring the tenants of white supremacy culture and their antidotes in Tema Okun’s work: white supremacy culture. This is again a classic work, first developed in 2001 the concepts continue to be deeply relevant & is also a very quick read.

As you engage with the reading we invite you to explore how you see the tenants of white supremacy culture: perfectionism, sense of urgency, defensiveness, quantity over quality, worship of the written word, only one right way, paternalism, either/or thinking, power hoarding, fear of open conflict, individualism, i’m the only one, progress is bigger/more, objectivity, and right to comfort show up in your family in your practice, in CNMA and in ACNM and consider how you can best shift these tenants when you see them show up!


Anti-Racist Strategies for White Midwives: Tools for Self-Examination & Action

Liz Donnelly, CNM, WHNP-BC, Kara Myers, CNM, MS, FACH, and Signy Toquinto, CNM, WHNP, MS, MA

View the Recording (ACNM membership login required)

Recently, California CNMs, Liz Donnelly, Kara Myers and Signy Toquinto gave the following presentation through ACNM. If you missed it, please plan to watch this presentation. They did an amazing job and this is critical work that all white-identified midwives need to undertake. CNMA expresses our gratitude to them for their depth of understanding and their personal conviction to addressing racism in midwifery, our society and our health care organizations.


CDPH Birth Related All County Letters

Please see an open letter from CDPH regarding changes to the Electronic Birth Registration System (EBRS) and the Certificate of Live Birth (VS 10D) HERE. (There are also many other important referenced CDPH attachments HERE). This is especially important for community-based and small business owner CNMs. Feel free to contact the CDPH to ensure you are getting all the necessary open letters and communications.


Frontline Doula Hotline

From Black Women's Birthing Justice

Free Virtual Doula Help HERE.

From Dr. Sayida Peprah of Black Women's Birthing Justice: ‘Pregnant Black Mamas! FRONTLINE DOULA HOTLINE GOES LIVE AUGUST 21ST!!!!’


Maternal and Child Health Access

This information is from Lynn Kersey from Maternal and Child Health Access.

As of August 1, eligibility for Medi-Cal or MCAP can be extended an additional ten months for people diagnosed with a maternal mental health condition, such as anxiety, depression, or bipolar disease.

This means that Medi-Cal or MCAP coverage continues for a full year for pregnant patients - experiencing miscarriage, abortion or birth - who have a diagnosed mental health condition during pregnancy or post delivery. MCAP will not charge premiums for the additional ten months of coverage.

Please see more information HERE


California Health Care Foundation: My Birth Matters Materials

The California Health Care Foundation (CHCF) would like to help you reach as many lower-income pregnant people in California as possible with the My Birth Matters materials. To do so, CHCF is currently providing funding to print and ship limited quantities of the campaign's brochure and poster to organizations that reach pregnant women in California.

These materials are available in 11 languages.

Below are the details on how to place your order:

  1. Go to this website: (You may need to cut and paste the URL.)

  2. Click on "variable print on demand."

  3. Choose the brochure or poster, choose your desired language, accept the "proof," and choose your quantity. Even though a price will be shown, you will not be billed; as stated above, CHCF is funding the printing and shipping.

  4. You can then add additional languages and/or the additional print file that you did not originally choose (brochure vs poster).

  5. When you check out, you'll be asked for your shipping information. You will not be asked for payment information at any point even though a cost is shown.


New Learning Series on Midwifery-Led Care in Medicaid

The Institute for Medicaid Innovation has created a New Learning Series on Midwifery-Led Care in Medicaid, focusing on Leveraging Midwifery-Led Care to address Disparities and Equity in Medicaid.

Please see HERE for details.


Questions? News? Want to get involved?

Email us at

That's all for this month's issue. Catch you next time!


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