Home > Events > Obstetrical Racism: Birth and Breastfeeding Trauma
01 April, 2024
11:29 am

Speaker: Hakima Tafunzi Payne MSN RN, Uzazi Village, Kansas City, MO

Obstetric Racism is a term coined by Black Feminist author and researcher, Dana-Ain Davis 2020).  She describes obstetric racism as sitting at the intersection of medical racism and obstetric violence.  At Uzazi Village, we approach obstetric racism as a part of the lived reality of the childbearing experience of Black families.  We prepare our doulas, community health workers, and breastfeeding peer counselors to recognize, intercede and navigate racism as it expresses itself in the healthcare system.  Obstetric racism means that African-American women are much less likely to meet their breastfeeding goals because they are much less likely to receive breastfeeding supportive care from their healthcare providers.  We want to make providers aware of how biased belief systems are impacting the care that they give and strategies for remedy.  I will also present the findings from my research study of Black women’s experience of breastfeeding support in Missouri’s Baby-Friendly hospitals.


  • Davis, Dana-Ain. 2020.  Reproducing While Black: The Crisis of Black Maternal Health, Obstetric Racism and Assisted Reproductive Technology. Reproductive Biomedicine & Society Online. Vol 11 : 56-64.
  • Payne, S. & Kellman, T. (2020). Voices of Black Mothers; The Baby-Friendly Experience. MO Department of Health and Human Services.