Young Women United: Campaign to Increase Access to Care and Treatment for Pregnant Women with Addictions


Young Women United is a community organizing project by and for young women of color in New Mexico.

Some of the areas they work to address include:

  • Defending Reproductive Rights
  • Improving the access young people have to quality reproductive health care
  • De-stigmatizing young families and building policies towards educational equality for pregnant and parenting teens
  • Improving prenatal care and treatment for substance using pregnant women and building ways to decriminalize their families
  • Improving women of color’s access to a wide range of birth options while promoting birth and parenting justice

In 2013, Young Women United organized alongside 30 women who had previously been pregnant and substance using at the same time. Now, the group has started an Indiegogo campaign to raise money to develop a short video documentary to educate the public and impact public policy. The group has already met their goal of raising $2000; the campaign closes tonight.

From the Indiegogo website:

Women who are substance using and pregnant at the same time face a criminal (in) justice system that only serves to shame and stigmatize addiction.  Mothers who use are often judged and told they must love their drugs more than their kids or that if they really loved their kids they would simply stop using.  We want to make a short video to highlight the powerful stories of strength and resiliency of our communities and shed light on the lived realities of people who struggle with addiction every day. By challenging exi[s]ting narratives around parenting and addiction, we hope to demonstrate the need for increased access to prenatal care and treatment for women who are pregnant and substance using.

The public education campaign draws from the first-hand experiences of women who have been pregnant and using substances at the same time. The goal is to “change the landscape of the way people think of addiction and parenting.”

The new campaign will be launched on Mother’s Day 2014 and aims to “change the landscape of the way people think of addiction and parenting.”

Visit Young Women United’s website here; for the latest information on the group’s organizing, check out their facebook page.

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