Midwives in Stroud are to join a nationwide vigil this weekend which will take place at 2pm outside the Subrooms on Sunday.
Midwives, doulas, health care professionals, supportive parents and lay people will march across the country in order to highlight the issues the profession is currently facing.
“It is clear that maternity services in the UK are in crisis, giving birth in the UK; a high-income country, is becoming critically unsafe. This is unacceptable. Where we have women, birthing people and babies at risk; their families, communities and countries become sick. This is a genuine national emergency which impacts every level of society,” said the March with Midwives’ steering group.
“I’m a local mum and I have been lucky enough to be under the care, support and skill of some amazing midwives and birth support teams in Gloucestershire,” said a Stroud spokeswoman.
“Both my births have been diverse ranging from the ideal water birth to a code red. But no matter where I was in the process, I was safe, I was reassured and I was valued.
“So tell me, why are these skilled, passionate midwives so under appreciated?
“And whilst you’re guiding your tour you have to battle severe staff shortages, risk of drowning in unnecessary paperwork, the quagmire of mental fragility due to the workload and you will get paid pittance. But these amazing people are out there!
“1 in 5 pregnant people will suffer from perinatal mental illness. I am one of the statistics. A bereavement in the early stages of my second pregnancy left me confused and vulnerable. My midwife ensured continuity of care to help reduce any adverse implications.
“But how she did it is still a miracle. Working with extreme poor staffing levels resulting in long unsociable hours, this hero ensured my mental health was accounted for. She saved my life. “
“This situation is just not sustainable. It’s not fair. It’s not right. To see my friends who are midwives, crumble and cry at the sheer overwhelming nature of this whole ridiculous situation is heart-breaking.
“Why are we punishing those who have chosen to care for us? Let’s make this fair! Let’s make the change!”