Natural Mommy was there yesterday when hundreds of women, babies and midwives descended on Queens Park in Toronto to rally for pay equity for the wonderful women who help birth our babies. As seen in this article from the Toronto Star [click here], Midwives have seen only two raises since becoming registered in 1994, while most other professions have seen more. Midwives save the medical system money yet “physicians make more than double” (Porter) what midwives do. Pointing this out is not to suggest that physicians should be paid less, but instead that midwives should clearly be paid more for their work and expertise.
On the facebook page which invited women to the event (hosted by Ontario Midwives) women wrote about how much they loved having a midwife because the support and quality of care they received was excellent. Other women wrote about how they were on waiting lists to get a midwife and in the end they were forced to have a hospital birth without the midwife they wanted. All women echoed their support for the event. Midwives not only assist women with a generosity of spirit and respect, they also have vast medical knowledge, training and education and are qualified to practice inside and outside of the hospital. Since 1994 they have been covered under OHIP. Midwives practice under the philosophy that women should be active in choosing the birth they want. It is about choice: be it a midwife assisted birth or not. Unfortunately, not all women can truly make a choice because of access to birthing options. So, in addition to paying our current midwives more and showing them a round of applause – Canada clearly needs more midwives!