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Improve Black Maternal Health

Illinois can’t wait to address Black maternal health disparities.

In the United States, the rate of maternal mortality is three to four times higher than other developed nations and significant disparities exist between racial and ethnic groups. Between 2011 and 2014, pregnancy-related mortality in the U.S. was four times higher for Black women than white women.

Illinois is the fifth most populous state and the fifth in the nation for births each year. Between 2008 and 2016, an average of 73 women died each year within one year of pregnancy and non-Hispanic Black women were six times as likely to die of a pregnancy-related condition as non-Hispanic White women.

Get involved.

The Black Organizing Program is an organized effort to elevate voices within the Black community and center our advocacy work in civic participation.

We support legislation that will:

  • Expand access to doulas

  • Expand home visit programs so postpartum people have supports from nurses, social workers, and behavioral health workers

  • Require implicit bias training for health care professionals
  • Provide better pregnancy and postpartum coverage in public and private health insurance

  • Require hospitals, birthing centers, and other providers that care for pregnant patients to adopt evidence-based protocols for identifying pregnant and postpartum patients and treating common pregnancy and postpartum complications

  • Provide funding and improved reimbursements to hospitals, primary care providers, and reproductive health care providers in communities of color