Thanks to the Liberals, we have no midwives in the Yukon

Whitehorse, April 14th – Tomorrow will mark the one-year anniversary of the Midwifery Regulation coming into effect in the Yukon. This means it has been a  year since Yukon midwives were last able to practice in the territory.

The new regulations require midwives to be registered for at least one year in another Canadian jurisdiction in order to practice in the Yukon. This prevented  local midwives from practicing in the territory the day the regulations came into force.

“It was clear from the start that it would take at least one year for Yukon midwives to fulfill the new requirements. Yet, the government put new regulations in place with no real interim solution. This government is failing expectant parents” said Kate White, leader of the Yukon NPD.

The posted salary for midwives is also far below salaries in neighboring jurisdictions. “The government is expecting midwives to practice outside of the territory for a year, come back to the Yukon, and accept a lower salary. It shouldn’t take a year to realize this is an issue,” said White.

Yukon communities have also been waiting to have birthing options closer to home; Whitehorse currently being the only place in the territory to give birth.

“We all recall the Yukon Party’s failure to provide birthing options in the Dawson City and the Watson Lake Community Hospitals. The Liberals have had years  to fix it – but here we are. No midwives anywhere in the territory, and no birth options in communities. It’s unacceptable to see families having unattended births at home because they feel they have no other choices” said White.