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Nope. No Way. Not On My Watch.

Who would take healthcare away from low-income kids?

You’d be surprised.

When I was an unemployed single mom, attempting to start a business, CHIP (Children’s Health Insurance Program) covered medical care for my young daughter, who was diagnosed with frightening febrile seizures at 19 months.

CHIP made a world of difference in our time of need. Without it, I’d be facing gut-wrenching decisions about medical care and worrying constantly about bankruptcy.

Yet lurking in Congress and in state houses across America is a growing movement to gut healthcare wins like CHIP and the Affordable Care Act that we’ve fought decades to secure.

Nope. No way. Not on my watch will politicians use my daughter’s health as a political football.

Please consider a year-end gift of $5 or more—whatever you can afford—to help MomsRising defend and expand affordable healthcare for families like mine.

New York Expands the Rights of Pregnant Women Not to Be Shackled

Today, Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York signed into law a measure that greatly expands protection against the inhumane and risky practice of restraining women when they are pregnant or have recently had a baby.

Although New York enacted a law in 2009 to prevent the use of restraints on women during labor and childbirth, that did not put a stop to the practice. Research by the Women in Prison Project of the Correctional Association of New York found that 23 of 27 women who gave birth after the law took effect were still restrained.

Moreover, the Correctional Association heard harrowing stories from women of being shackled during hours-long bus rides between prisons and trips to see a doctor outside of prison, and of having to navigate stairs with their hands cuffed and their ankles chained together, a recipe for tripping and falling.

CONCUSSION and the American Dream: An Exploration of Repeated Brain Trauma and Sports

I am an immigrant from Kenya and my husband is Puerto Rican. We are both Muslim and met 14 years ago when we were introduced by a friend after Friday prayers. It's a challenging time to raise my three children, I never know which part of their identity will be under scrutiny in that night's news cycle. In fact, it was in the middle of a new storm of troubling rhetoric that I was invited to watch an advanced screening of CONCUSSION.

CONCUSSION stars Will Smith (whose performance is truly reason enough to see this movie) and explores the work of Dr. Bennet Omalu, a nuero-pathologist and an immigrant from Nigeria who has dedicated so much of himself to raise awareness on the effects of repeated head trauma in sports.

The movie struck a deep chord with me. Like Dr Omalu, I have intense faith in our ability to be agents of transformational change. I have worked on outreach for the Affordable Care Act and am proud to support the critical work that MomsRising does on issues such as paid family leave and food security.

Parents: Put Your Own Oxygen Mask On First (or How to Raise Healthier Children)

We all need support, no matter who we are.  As a pediatrician, CEO and a mom, I am constantly juggling priorities, schedules and child care.  Some days are just plain hard and I’ve learned that the only way to get through the tough days and weeks is to practice self care. 

Self care is about how we can be our best selves in order to be of support to those around us. For children to lead healthier lives, they need a healthy adult who can act as an emotional buffer to stressful or traumatic experiences. In other words, taking care of my own emotional health and well-being is one of the best investments that I can make for my kids’ health.

Wow, You Did All THAT in 2015? MomsRising WINS!

Celebrate Wins!

Sometimes it’s hard to see the many ways that small actions like signing a petition, sharing your personal experience, making a call, attending a local meeting, or playing a MomsVote debate game on social media add up over time and make a big difference.

They do. Because we are MomsRising together.

Your everyday actions (over a million in 2015!) added up to inspiring victories for moms and families this year:

Breastfeeding Moms Need a Break (literally!)

There are those moments in motherhood, you know the ones, that are permanently etched in memory. I can still vividly recall the trek from my sleek office to my car to pump breast milk. This walk, which felt both stressful and shameful, was necessary because my office space had no place for me to use my breast pump. So it was pumping in the car or nothing. Not ideal to say the least.

It shouldn’t have to be that way.  

Women pumping breast milk do not need any additional obstacle put in our path. And doctors agree: Breastfeeding is best for babies and moms. In fact, because of breastfeeding’s significant health benefits for both babies and mothers, all major medical authorities recommend that mothers breastfeed exclusively for six months and continue breastfeeding for at least the first year [2]  Many moms plan to nurse but hit seemingly insurmountable hurdles when they return to work—and three-quarters of moms are either the primary or co-breadwinner these days, so returning to work is a big deal. But sadly returning to work is too often a significant barrier to breastfeeding, putting moms at risk. [1]

Health Insurance Is Key to Addressing Native American Health Disparities

November is Native American Heritage Month, a time for the country to remember and honor the histories, contributions, and struggles of the 566 federally recognized tribes and the 5.4 million American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/AN) living in the United States. November is also the first month of open enrollment for the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) 2016 marketplace coverage. While the federal government is obligated to provide health care to Native Americans through the Indian Health Service (IHS), this blog explains why getting marketplace coverage is a good idea for many AI/AN consumers.

A Special Match for #GivingTuesday


You gave thanks. You ate delicious food. You got deals. Now, it’s time to give back!

Today is Giving Tuesday, a national day of celebrating and supporting the causes that matter most to us – like making the world a better, safer, more just place for women, moms and families.

To mark this day, another generous donor has offered to give $25 for every contribution today – in any amount! Make a gift, unlock this special match for Giving Tuesday!

Our goal today is to recruit 100 new and returning MomsRising donors today for Giving Tuesday. I hope you will become one of them!

Your support today will help MomsRising dial up the fight for pay equity, push harder for gun safety, and turn up the pressure for paid family / maternity / paternity medical leave.

Join Us For a Special Tweetchat to #GetCovered!

If you missed our Wellness Wednesday chat last week on open enrollment and still have questions about your healthcare coverage, we invite you to join us, What to Expect author Heidi Murkoff and senior advisor to the President and chair of the White House Council on Women and GirlsValerie Jarrett for a special tweetchat tomorrow, 11/13 at 12 p.m. ET. We will be discussing healthcare and the ACA.

Use hashtag #GetCovered to ask your question and follow the conversation. Don't forget to spread the word. Tweet you later!



Five Things You Should Know for Open Enrollment

It’s a lovely time of year!

I’m seeing leaves of all different colors, pumpkins (and spice!) everywhere, boots & sweaters galore, and…. the health insurance marketplace is open!

There are a few changes around open enrollment under the Affordable Care Act this year. So take a moment to review these changes so you can share accurate information with your friends and/or use while you are shopping for health coverage too!

Five Things You Should Know for Open Enrollment

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