I was recently invited by Kimberly Seals Allers to attend a screening of the Crisis in the Crib: Saving Our Nation's Babies, a documentary by Tonya Lewis Lee focusing on maternal and infant health in the African American community
I joined Women's eNews, Tonya Lewis Lee, Carol Jenkins and many other African American women community advocates to celebrate the second year of the Black Maternal Health: A Legacy and A Future project with this screening. After the screening a powerful and encouraging discussion of the maternal health of African American women filled the room.
"The infant mortality rate is a marker for the health of a nation, and I know that all of those babies lost to infant mortality are important resources lost to us all." said Lee, a spokesperson for the Office of Minority Health's "A Healthy Baby Begins With You" campaign since 2007.While the film focus on the African American community, where the rate of maternal and infant mortality is twice as high compared to the general population, this crisis is really one that affects ALL mothers and communities within the United States. You can watch the 30-minute documentary online and also see video from the screening at Women's eNews.
"When I realized that the World Health Organization ranked the United States 29th in the world in infant mortality I had to become involved," said Lee. "American children are dying at the rate of third world countries. It's a shame and it doesn't have to be that way if we educate the public on the problem and begin to work on eradicating some of the causes."
For more information: Office of Minority Health - Crisis in the Crib
For more information on the Healthy Baby Begins with You campaign please visit the Office of Minority Health: http://minorityhealth.hhs.gov/templates/browse.aspx?lvl=2&lvlID=117