Certified Professional Midwives (CPMs) ARE Legally Authorized to Practice in Michigan
Mothers, Families, and Midwives are Actively Working on Creating CPM Rules and Regulations
MIDWIFERY PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZATION
Michigan Midwives Association
Stacia Proefrock, President
stacia at cornellbox dot com
Friends of Michigan Midwives (FoMM)
friendsofmichiganmidwives at gmail dot com
Coalition to License CPMs: Families & Professionals for Safe Home Birth
These organizations form a coalition that is working to develop rules and regulations that govern the licensure of CPMs in Michigan.
A group of midwives and leadership in Michigan began discussing licensure issues in the mid 2000’s and sent a representative to the initial meeting of the Big Push in Chicago at PushSummit 2007.
Then, following the 2008 Midwives Alliance of North America (MANA) national conference, which was held in Michigan, the Michigan Midwives Association (MMA) invited to the state Ida Darragh, Chairperson of the Board of the North American Registry of Midwives (NARM), to offer a legislative workshop.
Shortly after that workshop that took place in 2009, MMA formed a “Legislative Core Group” to pursue licensure for CPMs in Michigan. After much preparation, the first bill to license CPMs was introduced in the Michigan legislature in October 2011, followed by its companion senate bill the following year. Neither bill received a committee hearing before the legislative session ended in December 2012.
Meanwhile, in 2010, consumers revitalized a midwife support group that had been established years earlier but had lapsed into inactivity when the founder moved out of state. Renamed the Friends of Michigan Midwives (FoMM), the organization’s two main responsibilities are raising funds and mobilizing consumers to support licensure efforts.
In 2013, the Legislative Core Group reformed as the Coalition to License CPMs, to provide a unified, one-issue umbrella group for the diverse organizations and individuals wishing to endorse an one-issue organization.
As Coalition to License CPMs partners, MMA and FoMM both contribute members to the Coalition’s executive committee. The Coalition reintroduced in the Michigan Legislature’s 2015-16 session the licensure bills it has supported in two previous sessions.
The Coalition enjoys many advantages:
- A long history of a strong midwifery tradition, including a pre-CPM state midwifery credential.
- A state governor with a declared “dashboard issue” of reducing infant mortality.
- A strong MMA and a dedicated Coalition executive committee.
- Increased interest in home birth, as evidenced by national statistics and rising client loads among midwives.
- Strong bill sponsors, particularly our House sponsor, himself born at home and the father of four children born at home.
- Bipartisan support among midwives, consumers and legislators; ours is one of very few legislative issues that find support among Michiganders with vastly diverse backgrounds and political and religious views.
- In the long term the Coalition must secure funding, unify its supporters, attract more consumer volunteers, and broadcast clear and memorable messages about the benefits of licensure in the context of meeting state public health goals.
CPM licensure bill sponsor Rep. Ed McBroom with consumer advocate and midwifery student Nyasia Bey.
The Friends of Michigan Midwives (FoMM) and its parent organization, the Coalition to License CPMs, support licensure based on the Certified Professional Midwife credential for direct entry midwives who attend out-of-hospital births in Michigan. Recently, they celebrated the enacted Michigan licensure measure, House Bill 4598, now Public Act 417 of 2016.
February 2017 update: On January 3, 2017, Governor Snyder signed HB 4598 into law. The FoMM FAQ will soon be updated to explain the law’s provisions and the process for implementing them. FoMM thanks all our supporters for their invaluable help during the last six years!
House Dem Floor Leader Kate Segal with MMA midwives Kate Mazzara and Connie Perkins.