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Medical, arts communities unite to improve Milwaukee's dismal Black birth outcomes

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Milwaukee Film Black Lens

The data is sobering: Milwaukee ranks among the worst places in the nation for a Black woman to have a child. Study after study has confirmed the reality, including a 2020 index by African American Leadership Alliance Milwaukee (AALAM).

So, how did we get here? And what can be done to reverse the trend?

In this episode, hosts Tarik Moody, Kim Shine and Reggie Jackson bring together leaders from the medical and arts communities, each with firsthand experience in the delivery room. First, Kim speaks with certified nurse midwife LuVerda Martin to learn how medical practitioners build trust with Black mothers. Then, Geraud Blanks of Milwaukee Film joins the conversation to speak about the Black Birth Maternal & Infant Health Symposium, set to return March 25. Each share how they're intentionally working to build trust in a historically underserved community.

By Every Measure season two is supported by The Argosy Foundation.

If you'd like to continue the conversation, we encourage you to join our By Every Measurediscussion group on Radio Milwaukee's Facebook page. Each week, we open a dialogue on the episode's topic with daily conversation prompts and a virtual meet-up to discuss responses and navigate the community conversations collectively.

"The Index of African American Well-Being," sponsored by AALAM, is an examination of African American community well-being in Milwaukee compared with the nation’s 50 largest metropolitan areas. You can find the full report here.

This season on 'By Every Measure'

  • Episode 1 — Black Brain Drain, Part 1, with nationally touring musicians SistaStrings, and musician and poet Emmitt James.
  • Episode 2 — Black Brain Drain, Part 2, with Corry Joe Biddle, executive director of Fuel Milwaukee; and Ranell Washington, vice president of Social X MKE. 
  • Episode 3 — Black Birth Outcomes with certified nurse midwife LuVerda Martin of Aurora Health Care and Geraud Blanks of Milwaukee Film.
  • Episode 4 — Housing (March 14) with Kevin Newell of Royal Capital.
  • Episode 5 — Critical Race Theory (March 21) with Anne Bonds of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee 
  • Episode 6 — Generational Wealth (March 28) with Greg Wesley of the Medical College of Wisconsin and Ken Robertson of the Greater Milwaukee Foundation.
Director of Digital | Radio Milwaukee
Production Manager | Radio Milwaukee
Director of Digital Content | Radio Milwaukee
Audio Production Manager | Radio Milwaukee