It is uncomfortable to admit that as an organization we have not shown up as an ally for our Birth Workers of Color community. This lack of allyship has caused deep rifts of pain for our members who have not been supported in a meaningful way. Intention aside, the result is heartbreaking. So, today we make an effort to step forward in deepest apologies for current and past hurt or exclusion. As the UDA president this year, it has been heavy on my heart and I finally recognized that besides the programs and steps we are taking to try to make things right, the first thing we need to do is to apologize to our friends, colleagues, and doulas of color. As spokeswoman for the organization I stand up and say that it is not right, and I will do all I can to work towards inclusion. I am sorry for not listening, for not being aware, and not being able to be the difference you were asking for last year, and every year prior. I make a commitment to doing what I can to do better. To be a better listener, to take a stand for change, and to assist the association to work towards shift. I acknowledge the policies and programs haven’t taken the disparity of race into account and that there is a lot of work yet to be done before the UDA will be considered an ally to birth workers of color. I implore all UDA members to join me in doing the work, inside yourselves and inside of the organization to begin to learn to be champions for those of color beside us who deserve our kindness, our friendship, our collaboration and our allyship.
UDA President 2021