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About CAM

Since 2001, the Canadian Association of Midwives (CAM) and the National Aboriginal Council of Midwives (NACM) have promoted the vital role of midwives in sexual, reproductive, and newborn health. We work across all levels, driving change in legislation and funding, strengthening regional associations, and supporting midwives directly with tools and learning opportunities.

The Future – CAM’s 5 Year Plan

Theory of Change Graphic
  • Our desired ultimate impact: equitable access to excellent sexual, reproductive, and newborn midwifery services for everyone.
  • To achieve this, we have established 3 Pillars: Advocacy, Association Strengthening and Promote Excellence
  • Equity, Responsibility, Respect, and Integrity are now the values that guide our decision-making processes.

CAM’s new 5-Year Plan is our road map of growth for midwifery. Learn more about the plan and what it means for midwifery and you in the 2021 Annual Report.

Or here in this detailed PDF

Annual Reports

To see how far we’ve come, scroll through these past annual reports:

Policies

On top of our 3 Pillars and core values, we also have policies to help guide decision making.

  • Anti-Corruption / Anti-Fraud Policy: Fraud, bribery, and corruption impact disproportionately on the poor and the most vulnerable people in the world, and disproportionately impact women. Such criminal activities divert resources from the intended beneficiaries, increase the costs of basic public services, and undermine economic growth, and are barriers to poverty alleviation.
  • Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Abuse Policy: This policy details CAM’s approach to preventing sexual exploitation and abuse, our expectations of those representing CAM, and our response when an issue arises.

Position Statements

CAM’s Position Statements outline our views on key issues around sexual and reproductive health. Topics rage from anti-racism to working conditions. These statements help influence the conversation and move legislation towards our goal of equitable access to excellent sexual, reproductive, and newborn midwifery services for everyone.

  • Midwives’ Provision of Abortion: Access to safe and legal abortion is a human right and providing abortion care and post abortion care is part of the role of Canadian midwives. Sexism, colonialism, poverty, racism, ableism, heterosexism, and cissexism create inequities in access to abortion care in Canada. Lack of access in rural areas, language barriers, and perceptions of risk to providers have also reduced timely access to abortion. CAM supports Canadian midwives who already provide abortion and post-abortion care and midwives who are working to integrate this care into their practice and calls on midwives and all reproductive health care providers to work to ensure access to abortion care in Canada.
  • Midwifery Care, Immunization, and Informed Choice: Access to vaccination information and services is a human right and increasing safe and equitable access to vaccines and vaccine information is important for community health and well-being. The prevention, control and treatment of infectious diseases improves health overall and helps to reduce health inequities among population groups.
  • Combatting Anti-Indigenous Racism: CAM strongly condemns the forced, coerced, and involuntary sterilization of Indigenous Peoples. We strongly condemn the over-representation of Indigenous infants and children in child protection services across the country and the practice of birth alerts. We strongly condemn the routine and blanket evacuation of pregnant people for birth and demand the return of birthing services to all Indigenous communities.
  • COVID-19 Vaccination & Health Care Workers: The evidence is clear that vaccines are safe, and vaccination helps to prevent the morbidity/mortality of COVID-19 infection. We support vaccination against COVID-19 and recommend that all midwives get vaccinated.
  • Reproductive Health Care: CAM commits to ensuring universal access to reproductive health care for all people in Canada and around the world. This commitment is grounded in the knowledge that universal access to reproductive health care is essential for achieving gender equity, as well as the realization of many important global development goals.
  • Canadian Midwifery Model of Care: The seven core principles of the Canadian midwifery model of care are: professional autonomy, partnership, informed choice, continuity of care-provider, choice of birth place, evidence-based practice and collaborative practice. This statement is a reference for the public, midwives, policy makers, government, health professionals, and educators, as well as those engaged in research, education, regulation, collaboration, and professional development.
  • Statement on Gender Inclusivity and Human Rights: We are committed to the inclusion of trans, genderqueer, intersex and otherwise marginalized communities in our central dialogue and focused on ensuring that CAM is inclusive in its statements, actions, and in all aspects of its work. These priorities should not be established by the needs of the majority but by the powerful impact of the inclusion of all voices.
  • Home Birth: CAM recognizes that planned home birth for healthy women is safe and that the definition of safety in maternity care includes physical safety, as well as a woman’s self-defined values of cultural, spiritual and emotional safety for herself, her baby and her family.
  • Midwifery Care and Normal Birth: CAM believes that midwives are making a vital contribution to interdisciplinary efforts to promote normal birth and decrease the anxiety that often surrounds maternity care today. Trust in the normal childbirth process is fundamental to the philosophy and practice of midwifery, the language midwives speak and the care they provide to women.
  • Breastfeeding: The Canadian Association of Midwives (CAM) advocates for breastfeeding as the optimal method of infant feeding with significant benefits for both mother and child, and recognizes its overall value and importance to public health. CAM endorses recommendations that infants should be exclusively breastfed for the first six months of life, and that breastfeeding ideally should continue after other foods are introduced.
  • Elective Caesarean Section: CAM allies with the Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada by stating that vaginal birth is clearly the safest birth for most women and babies, and that caesarean surgery on demand will have disastrous social and financial consequences for health internationally. Presenting interventions such as c‐section as “options” puts maternity care providers and women in a consumerist relationship, and treats childbirth as a problem to be solved rather than a process to be respected.

NACM Position Statements, fully endorsed by CAM

  • Evacuation for Birth: The National Aboriginal Council of Midwives (NACM) strongly condemns the routine and blanket evacuation of pregnant people for birth and demands the return of birthing services to all Indigenous communities. It is unacceptable that people must leave their communities and travel to large and usually southern centres to access maternity care services.
  • Indigenous Child Apprehensions: NACM recognizes that the overrepresentation of Indigenous children in child protection systems is fueled by a Western society that cannot effectively address the ongoing challenges for Indigenous families created by racism and colonization.
  • Forced and Coerced Sterilization of Indigenous Peoples: The National Aboriginal Council of Midwives (NACM) strongly condemns the forced, coerced, and involuntary sterilization of Indigenous Peoples. These reprehensible procedures are founded on eugenics laws, policies, and ideologies that are racist, sexist, ableist, and classist. Forced, coerced, and involuntary sterilization does not just affect individual Indigenous Peoples; it is an assault on our families, communities, and Nations and continues Canada’s long-standing history of colonization and assimilation.

Joint Statements

  • Rural Maternity Care: Canadian women deserve quality maternity care regardless of whether they live in urban, rural, or remote communities. Individual health care providers must work to develop and maintain models of maternity care adapted to the communities in which women reside and to the resources available.
  • Nurses and Midwives Collaborate on Client-Centred Care: CNA, CAM and CAPWHN regard increasing the development of inter-professional and collaborative models for health service delivery as important for improving access to primary maternity care. Midwives and nurses frequently work together, complement and learn from each other, and understand and value each other’s roles and experiences.
  • Breastfeeding: CAM and CNA join in endorsing the World Health Organization’s Global Strategy for Infant and Young Child Feeding. While supporting a woman’s right to decide the method of feeding her child, registered midwives and registered nurses in Canada are strong advocates of breastfeeding and will work with their clients, other health-care professionals and public policy-makers in all sectors as necessary to encourage successful breastfeeding.
  • Liability Protection for Midwives and Physicians: New and evolving models for health care delivery have increased the opportunity for physicians, midwives and other health care providers to all be involved in the treatment of the same patient. This inevitably reinforces the need for health care professionals to ensure they individually have adequate personal professional liability protection.

Board of Directors

CAM is lead by representatives from every province and territory across Canada.

Alberta: Chelsea Miklos, RM
British Columbia: Alyson Jones, RM
Manitoba: Sarah Davis, RM
New Brunswick: Brittany Stairs, RM
Newfoundland & Labrador: Brianna Thompson, RM
Northwest Territories: Heather Heinrichs, RM
Nova Scotia: CJ Blennerhassett, RM
Nunavut: TBA
Ontario: Jasmin Tecson, RM
Prince Edward Island: Joyce England
Québec: Josyane Giroux, RM
Saskatchewan: Jessica Bailey, RM
Yukon: Kathleen Cranfield, RM
NACM co-chairs: Brenda Epoo, SF & Claire Dion Fletcher, SF
Student rep: Katrina Thiessen

Executive Committee

President: Alix Bacon, RM
Vice President: Elizabeth Brandeis, RM
Secretary: Trish Langley Frempong, RM
Treasurer: Sara Wolfe, RM

Executive Director: Tonia Occhionero

Being a CAM Member is Important

Being a member of CAM means that you are taking a stand and declaring that you believe in a better future; that you support our vision of equitable access to excellent sexual, reproductive, and newborn midwifery services for everyone; that you believe in our shared values of equity, responsibility, respect and integrity.

Student Members

As a student you can be an active force for change. You are the midwives of the future and are vital to the success of this profession.