Freedom For Birth campaign video

Uploaded by realbirthstories on 06.06.2012

The freedom in a country can be measured by the freedom of birth
Agnes Gereb, Budapest Hungary May 2012
18 months ago we began filming for One World Birth.
We were in Strasbourg, France and we first heard of a midwife
who had been arrested and imprisoned in Hungary.
Her name was Agnes Gereb.
I think about Agnes Gereb with love.
I would say that Agi is my hero.
Agnes Gereb is the most wonderful person I have ever met.
She is definitely a pioneer.
What she is doing is really important.
feel that she is fighting for me.
She is fighting for my child.
She is fighting for all of us.
She is like Joan of Arc.
She is a big fighter.
She did a lot.
What she did during these 22 years
for us, for the mothers
is just beautiful and
makes me cry.
Day 500 of Agnes' imprisonment and house arrest.
Agnes is a midwife based in Budapest in Hungary.
She has performed over 3,000 homebirths
and has been helping the women of Hungary
exercise their right to choose how and where to give for many years.
As a result she's been persecuted by the Hungarian authorities who outlawed homebirth
many years ago and who have refused persistently to make it legal and to recognise women's rights.
As a result, Agnes has been criminally prosecuted for assisting women giving birth at home.
Every country needs to quit harrassing its homebirth moms and parents
and those midwives and physicians who feel inclined to help homebirth.
There are midwives all over the world who are being victimized, jailed, fined
Yes, there is a general witchhunt against midwives
Agi Konyve - it means this book is for me.
I got it in the prison.
And I was so moved because...
these are letters from women who gave birth with me
and pictures...
As a UK lawyer meeting Agnes and listening to the Court of Appeal verdict in Budapest
I felt very appalled and shocked that a fellow EU member state
could treat one its citizens so abysmally and unfairly
I feel very angryy about the way she has been treated
I feel very upset about the way she has been treated
But I remain very hopeful that she will get justice eventually in Hungary.
I'm just keen that that happens as soon as is humanly possible.
The reason why we are drawn to Agnes' story and the reason why this film has to be made right now
is because Agnes' story epitomises the very worst of what is happening with birth today.
We are making a documentary film about the story of birth today.
It is a film about how birth has been stolen by a powerful institutionalised system that is born of fear.
A system that inherently believes that birth is dangerous and must be managed and controlled by modern technology.
The rhythm of childbirth is nothing that fits within the sort of hospital environment and hospital business that goes on at the moment.
And yet what we are doing is advising all women to give birth in hospital.
The issues have nothing to do with safety at all.
The issues are to do with power.
The power of big institutions like hospitals and the whole medical system takes over
and this is why it is a matter of human rights.
We've made birth a profit-making industry.
And the more fear that is there, the more greed and ignorance are also magnified.
And when you put fear, greed and ignorance together you've got a really dangerous combination.
That fear is introduced often into the discussion
and the provider who is introducing that maybe doing it from a different perspective
either fear of litigation themselves, afraid to have a certain outcome
worrying about what their peers would say about them and things like that.
But when they direct their care to that patient it causes them to do things that the patient might not want to do.
The vast majority who practise in when I call a "technocratic" model of medicine
where it is about treating the body as if it were a machine and birth is a dysfunctional mechanical process
and you use every intervention in the book just to get the baby out because you don't trust the normal physiology of birth.
So doctors don't encourage women to trust their bodies or trust their babies or trust the birth process
because doctors themselves don't trust it.
And all those interventions just really contribute to why women have higher c-section rates,
higher operative vaginal deliveries, you know, forceps and vacuum
just because we are not letting their bodies do what it's supposed to do.
A woman comes into hospital healthy with nothing wrong
and just because the physiology of birth is not respected
this cascade of problems ensues
and she ends up with a c-section she didn't need.
Women need to search for the birth experience they want.
The flip side of that is that if they don't do that they often get the birth experience that
the business of Obstetrics and Gynaecology has turned into.
Our society is almost oblivious to this incredible travesty that happens to women.
It is an abuse of women.
It is no less than abuse of women.
It is a film that is also the story of a movement that is rising up around the world.
A movement that is determined to take back birth.
"Who are we?"
"Where's My Midwife?"
"And what do we want?"
"Privileges for all"
"Let's go!"
"Where's My Midwife? Privileges for all"
"Where's My Midwife? Privileges for all"
"Where's My Midwife? Privileges for all"
We're definitely making the noise and the message that we intended.
And just letting the town know kind of what's happening and this many
women and children are kind of upset as to what's happening at the hospital
I think this is amazing. The response that we're getting
even by the crowd, the cars driving by. It's wonderful.
There is hope.
There are more women who are questionning this.
And I think there will be a turnaround.
Women need to find a voice
And this can happen right across the world
This is the time when we have to make our voices heard
Now is really the time for action
Here's what you need to do to get the attention
and to kind of gather that voice into a big strong voice
I'm all the time getting evidence of the activity that's building up
the swirling committment that women have
is thatwomen will take back childbirth.
We shouldn't have to fight for this.
It should be something that we're granted.
It's so simple.
We all need to stand up and fight for women's rights in childbirth
because control has been taken away for far too long.
And it's so important that we take action now
and we promote natural birth and we do battle where battle is needed.
Let's seize the moment and let everybody be involved in making birth better
and changing the whole world of birth.
Birth isn't something we suffer
but something we actively do and exalt in.
Our next step
We need your help in two ways
Firstly we need to raise the budget to get this film finished
and secondly we need your help to get this film distributed.
We have to make a film that is going to send shockwaves around the world.
But for maximum impact we need that film to be free.
And that's why we need your help right now.
We need your help to make sure this film gets seen by as wide and audience as possible.
And for that we have a plan that involves you.
We want to hold 1000 premiere screenings all around the world on one single day this summer and we want you to hold them.
We are passionate about this film.
It's the most important film about birth we've ever made and probably will ever make
And we just need that one final push, just your help to get us across the finishing line
So that together we will take childbirth back.
One World Birth's really important film is going to fire people up
get them passionate, get them talking about birth
about taking back control over women's bodies
It's the most important issue there is in human rights at the moment
and One World Birth is just so well placed to do it.
Please support our campaign at
Save birth, change the world