Angela Helm for the Root writes:
Kira Johnson Spoke 5 Languages, Raced Cars, Was Daughter in Law of Judge Glenda Hatchett. She Still Died in Childbirth.
Kira is but one of the hundreds of black women who die in childbirth each year—at rates that dwarf those of their white counterparts—regardless of socioeconomic standing, education or marital status (see Serena Williams’ near-death experience in childbirth or the new report that black women in Illinois are six times more likely to die in childbirth than their white counterparts.)
11 Alive reports that for every 13 white women who die during pregnancy or within one year of giving birth, there are 44 black women. More than half of all deaths have been deemed preventable by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The reasons for this disparity, which has been studied and debated by researchers and doctors for more than two decades, is not definitely clear, but there is growing evidence that the toxicity of racism—both in the lives of black women and in the medical establishment—plays a large part.