Brooklyn Borough Prez to host Maternal Health Expo for expecting Brooklynites and new parents July 15

antonio reynoso headshot
Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso will host a Maternal Health Expo this Saturday, July 15.
File photo courtesy of the Office of the Brooklyn Borough President

Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso is hosting a maternal health expo at Brooklyn Borough Hall on July 15, providing new and expecting parents with educational resources for a healthy pregnancy and postpartum experience.

The expo offers pregnancy workshops that will teach moms and dads everything they need to know about bringing a baby into the world, as well as fun dancing and exercise activities.

Brooklynites can stop into the four seminars to hear from trained nurses, certified lactation counselors and other health professionals. The event begins at 1 p.m. with the educational seminars beginning at 1:30 p.m. The featured workshops include:

  • Prenatal Nutrition and  Cooking led by Daphne Bianco, a Women’s Health Dietician at NYC H+H/Kings County 
  • Know Your Rights: Paid Parental Leave, Health Insurance, and More led by Yomaha Gordon, Program Coordinator for the Caribbean Women’s Health Association.
  • Breastfeeding led by Paulette Porter-Clarke, RN, CLC, of NYC H+H/Woodhull.
  • Safe Sleep led by Shantel Taylor Tull, Family Wellness Suite-Site Coordinator, NYC Health Department.

Expecting parents can also enjoy safe body exercises during a Mommy and Me yoga class or belly dancing. 

Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso has advocated for maternal health since taking over his role in 2022.

According to reports from the CDC, the maternal mortality rate for non-Hispanic Black women was 2.9 times higher compared the non-Hispanic women. Data compiled by the New York City Department of Health and Hygiene reported Brooklyn had the highest number of pregnancy associated deaths in 2018. Black woman accounted for 47.6% of the maternal related deaths compared to 23.8% white women,  making reproductive health “one of the greatest inequities of our time”, according to Reynoso.

maternal health poster
The beep has launched several maternal health programs during his tenure in Borough Hall, including a series of informational flyers and posters.File photo courtesy of the Office of the Brooklyn Borough President

“This crisis we have in Brooklyn – where Black women are dying at 9.4 times the rate of their White counterparts – is deeply personal to me, and it’s unfortunately not a crisis we can solve in a single day,” said. “That’s why since before I set foot in Borough Hall as Borough President, I made a commitment to do whatever I can to make Brooklyn the safest place in the city to have a baby.”

In April of 2022 he introduced a Maternal Health Taskforce comprised of OBGYNs, nurses, midwives and other health and community advocates.

Later that year he allocated his entire Fiscal Year 2023 capital funding of $45 million amongst three public hospitals– NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings CountyNYC Health + Hospitals/South Brooklyn Health and NYC Health + Hospitals/Woodhull — in the vain of improving reproductive healthcare. 

“We’ve got to keep pushing out resources, spreading information, building out pipelines to expand midwifery programs, and so on. This is an all-hands-on-deck crisis, and our maternal health expo is all about the power we already have among us to encourage healthy and happy pregnancies,” he said. 

The Maternal Health Expo is one of the beeps latest attempts to improve the state of Brooklyn maternal healthcare.

Partners include members of Reynoso’s maternal task force, the NYC health department, NYC Health+Hospitals, Assembly Member Brian Cunningham, Caribbean Women’s Health Association and other advocacy nonprofits.

Reynoso allocated the entirety of his FY23 capital funding to public health centers.
Reynoso allocated the entirety of his FY23 capital funding to maternal health programs in public health centers.File photo courtesy of the Office of the Brooklyn Borough President

“We’re coming together as city agencies, local organizations, maternal health experts, doctors, doulas, and more to show that Brooklyn is ready to turn the tide on maternal mortality. With Mommy and Me belly dancing, yoga, workshops, and so much more – Saturday will be a great day, and I hope all of Brooklyn and beyond can join us.”

Brooklynites are encouraged to RSVP using the event registration form. Amant Bookstore, 315 Maujer St.