South Dakota Families Face Down Tremendous Opposition in the “Mount Rushmore State”

Rapid City Conference 2012

Certified Professional Midwives (CPMs)
NOT Legally Authorized to Practice in South Dakota
Actively working on CPM legislation


There is not such an organization in South Dakota.
The extremely hostile practice environment precludes it.


Birth Matters Logo with Border


South Dakota Birth Matters

Debbie Pease, Chairperson
–> dpease84 at yahoo dot com

“South Dakota Birth Matters is sponsoring a Video Contest with a Grand Prize of $1000. We would love to see lots of short films on YouTube explaining “Why Birth Matters.”  We hope the large prizes and $0 entry fee, will inspire many to post videos that will help to educate the world about the importance of birth.  You can find all the details at our website:

The families of South Dakota Birth Matters have been working since 1992 to regain access to home birth midwives. During that time we have helped pass the following laws:

  • Affirm the rights of family members to assist at out-of-hospital births. 1998
  • Allow the opportunity for Certified Nurse Midwives to attend out-of-hospital births. 2008
  • Remove the repeal clause on the 2008 nurse midwife law. 2010
  • License birth centers. 2011
  • Exempt certain breastfeeding moms & new parents from jury duty. 2012
  • Protect health care sharing ministries. 2012

Pierre MomsWe are still working actively on passing legislation to license Certified Professional Midwives. While we have several women who would like to train to become Certified Professional Midwives, we have no Certified Professional Midwives practicing in the state.

Erick & Tina JensenThe atmosphere here is extremely hostile. While we have made steady progress in educating and winning the support of legislators, our Governor and consequently our Department of Health are very opposed to licensing Certified Professional Midwives.

We are a very small state, with a tight budget. We rely on the expertise of The Big Push in many areas including:  writing legislation, legislative strategy and media engagement. Being able to network with other state organizations who have members working towards the same goals has been invaluable in helping us keep up our morale in the face of tremendous opposition.

 Erick & Tina Jensen represent the many families who move to Ellsworth Airforce Base after having had a home birth with a Certified Professional Midwife in another state, only to learn that option is not available in South Dakota.

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