Radical Doula

Miriam Zoila Pérez

Radical Doula

My interest in birth started sometime in middle school, during various hour-long sessions pouring over health books at friend’s houses. I became a doula in 2004, after watching the documentary Born in the USA and deciding that birth activism was my passion. I’ve worked as a reproductive justice organizer with the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health, a case manager for pregnant Latinas and most recently a self-employed writerspeaker and healer.

In 2007, I worked with Lauren Mitchell and Mary Mahoney to found the Doula Project, a NYC based organization that provides doula care to folks across the spectrum of pregnancy. Mary and Lauren took that project to amazing places after I left in 2008 to move to Washington DC. I then had the pleasure of working as an abortion and miscarriage doula with the project for two years while back living in NYC.

I founded Radical Doula in 2007 as a way to connect the dots between issues that are often seen as contradictory: reproductive rights, birth activism, doula work, LGBT issues, immigrant rights, racial justice. I wanted to connect with other like-minded doulas with radical and intersectional politics, working across movements and oppressions.

I’ve served on the Sistersong Women of Color Reproductive Health Collective Management Circle, and as the Chair of the Board of Directors of the Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice.

I’ve has received various awards and recognitions for my work, including a 2009 Young Woman of Achievement Award from the Women’s Information Network and a 2010 Barbara Seaman Award for Activism in Women’s Health from the National Women’s Health Network. I was included in a recent MORE Magazine feature about new feminists to pay attention to, and Curve Magazine named me Best Activist/Newcomer in 2010.

My TED talk, How Racism is Harming Pregnant Women and What Can Help, has been viewed over 850,000 times, and my writing on topics of race and gender have been published at the New York Times, Colorlines, Talking Points Memo, Fusion, Rewire and others. 

You can contact me at radicaldoulaATgmailDOTcom.