Centering Black Mothers in California
The Centering Black Mothers in California report shows how social policies, structural racism, and community and neighborhood conditions impact the health of Black birthing people and babies. In California and across the United States, Black mothers experience some of the highest rates of life-threatening childbirth complications, deaths from pregnancy-related causes, and babies born too early or too small.
The report was informed by Black women leaders and community members in California. Their unique insights helped develop the findings and recommendations to improve the health outcomes of Black mothers and babies.
Here’s what you need to know:
- Black birthing people in California are three to four times more likely to die of pregnancy-related causes than other racial and ethnic groups.
- The rate of life-threatening childbirth complications is highest among Black women.
- The preterm birth rate among Black infants did not improve between 2011 and 2019.
- Black infants are twice as likely as other infants to die before their first birthday.
- The report links structural racism to health in three ways: 1) Neighborhood conditions that are influenced by discriminatory policies,1-23 2) chronic stress created by racism and racist policies,4-56 and 3) lack of access to high-quality, respectful health care.7-89