Freedom for Birth

Freedom for Birth is a 58 minute campaigning film that re-frames Human Rights as the most pressing issue in childbirth today.
In many countries around the world, women are being denied the most basic human right of autonomy over their own bodies. They cannot choose how and where to give birth. Those that persist in their desire to have a normal, physiological birth are sometimes forced by judges to surrender to surgery or threatened with having their babies taken away by child welfare services.
In many countries, if a woman wants to have a home birth supported by a midwife, those midwives face criminal prosecution. Some midwives, like Ágnes Geréb in Hungary, are even imprisoned. Freedom for Birth calls for radical reform to the world’s maternity systems so that these Human Rights violations stop and women are afforded real choice as to how and where they give birth.

“I write in strong support of the ‘Freedom For Birth’ film. The abuse of women’s human rights in the area of maternity care is widespread, and it is contributing to the rapid erosion of obstetrical/midwifery skills that used to be considered mandatory for all maternity care providers.”

Ina May Gaskin

Author / Midwife

“The launching of the documentary film ‘Freedom for Birth’ is an opportunity to clarify what our main objectives should be – at a planetary level. We must learn how to create such situations that as many women as possible will give birth to babies and placenta thanks to the release of a “cocktail of love hormones”. These objectives are not utopian if we first accept to learn how to protect the physiological processes.”

Michel Odent

MD & Author

“Today we encounter a challenge in the politics of birth worldwide. Our united response now will make an enormous difference for women everywhere – bringing birth freedom in place of the technocratic and clock-dominated management that treats us as passive objects of care to be forcibly emptied of our contents. Freedom for Birth spotlights what we must do for women to be able to make informed choices, informed refusals, and discover sexuality and spontaneity in the powerful unfolding of life.”

Sheila Kitzinger MBE

Author & Social Anthropologist

“I fully support the Freedom for Birth film. The film shows the serious breach of human rights in restricting the choice of women as to where and how they give birth to their babies, even when that care, such as home birth, is a safe choice for them and their baby. In the extreme Midwives such as Agnes Gereb have been imprisoned for her attendance at home births ( there are many other midwives in this situation).

Human rights in childbirth is a crucial and urgent issue, because the way that babies are brought into the world will have a profound effect on them, their families and our world. We need to ensure the birth of the next generation – all around the world – is able to be born in the best place and in the best way for them.”

Prof. Lesley Page

President, The Royal College of Midwives


To raise awareness of human rights in childbirth, we want to encourage screenings of Freedom for Birth.

We released the feature-length film on one single day in 2012, with over 1000 screenings in 50 countries.

The screenings created a wave of passion all around the world. And now we feel the time is right to do it all over again!

So, we have removed the need to buy a screening licence, and we have reduced the price of the DVD.

Watch Freedom for Birth on Vimeo On Demand

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