Trudeau needs to help

Prairie Post (East Edition) - - News -

Edi­tor:

When Meghan Markle gave birth to a baby boy, the event made head­lines ev­ery­where and fans re­joiced that mother and child are do­ing well. Such joy owes much to the ex­cel­lent care that the Duchess re­ceived – care that is not avail­able to many.

If a woman gives birth in a poor, remote re­gion, with­out the help of skilled health per­son­nel, the risk that she may die in child­birth is as much as 20 times greater than it is in the de­vel­oped world, where Meghan is for­tu­nate to live. 99% of ma­ter­nal deaths oc­cur in de­vel­op­ing coun­tries and most could have been pre­vented with bet­ter re­sources. That such a dis­par­ity should con­tinue to ex­ist in the 21st cen­tury is un­con­scionable.

Canada has been a leader in fo­cus­ing at­ten­tion and gath­er­ing re­sources to ad­dress high ma­ter­nal mor­tal­ity, no­tably through the multi-bil­lion dol­lar Muskoka Ini­tia­tive on Ma­ter­nal, New­born, and Child Health. But this fund­ing will run out in 2020, and much re­mains to be done. In less than ten days, Canada will wel­come the world’s largest gath­er­ing on the health, rights, and well­be­ing of girls and women, at the Women De­liver Con­fer­ence in Van­cou­ver. I hope that Prime Min­is­ter Trudeau will prove to his dis­tin­guished au­di­ence that Canada stands by the prom­ise it made at Muskoka to the women of the world – that ev­ery woman should have an equal chance for a healthy and joy­ful moth­er­hood.

Chi­tra Ra­maswami Cal­gary, AB

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