On January 27 & 28 2021, the Canadian Association of Midwives (CAM) was honoured to participate, along with the National Aboriginal Council of Midwives (NACM), at the Federal government’s dialogue to advance a national action plan to eliminate anti-Indigenous racism in Canadian healthcare. This dialogue follows the tragic death of Joyce Echaquan. Joyce, and so many other Indigenous people, regularly face deadly and demeaning racism when seeking care. Fourteen years after the adoption of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and six years after the publication of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action, anti-Indigenous racism remains an epidemic, not only in our health care system but within all our institutions.
CAM urges all governments, at all levels, to recognize the existence of systemic racism and to commit investments in Indigenous Midwifery now. We will continue to support and raise the voice of NACM as a leader in Indigenous health, and Indigenous Midwifery as a protective force against racism in the health care system.