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Thursday, November 1, 2018

A Short Documentary Examines Why Pregnancy is Killing Black Women

Screenshot from Pregnancy is Killing Black Women Documentary


Nationwide — The statistics are grim: Black women and black babies are losing their lives at a rate that’s 3-4x higher than any other ethnicity during pregnancy and childbirth in the United States. After coming across news reports exposing this dire issue, Roman Debotch from BlackExcellence.com went looking for black women who had difficult pregnancies, lost babies, experienced dangerous births, dealt with racist medical providers and more. The result is a short documentary titled Pregnancy is Killing Black Women.

“I was shocked, really shocked when I came across multiple reports highlighting this issue in the black community. I had no idea the numbers were the worst racial disparities when it comes to health care,” said Roman, the director and host of the 20 minute documentary. “I knew I had to make a film about this and share the stories of these women.”

The short documentary was released on October 30th and can be watched here.

Among those interviewed is Texas State Representative Shawn Thierry. The lawyer turned
politician has both a personal and a professional relation to this matter. Rep. Thierry
experienced a very difficult birth when she delivered her daughter. She had to advocate for
herself in the middle of the delivery to save her life. So, when she came across reports about
the high maternal mortality rates in Texas, she knew she had to introduce legislation to look into this matter.

The number of organizations working to combat this national health crisis is growing. Among
them are Great Beginning for Black Babies, Inc , located in Inglewood, CA, and Healing
Hands Community Doula Project , located in Austin, TX. The representatives for both
organizations spoke about the importance of a strong support system a black woman needs
when going through pregnancy, especially when it comes to dealing with medical professionals.
“My personal mantra is no black woman should go to a hospital on her own,” said Darline
Turner, Executive Director of Healing Hands Community Doula Project. “I can’t tell you the
number of times I have gone in and a woman is labouring and they’re asking her questions that
had nothing to do with her her labour.”

For additional information on this short documentary, please contact Jarett Horton or Roman
Debotch at info@blackexcellence.com . An article based on the documentary is also available


Jarett Horton