Changing for the Better

As regular readers of this blog know, I've been fighting an ongoing battle with the NSW Healthcare Complaints Commission. If you're coming to the story now, in 2011 prior to the birth of my son in a NSW public hospital, I requested a c-section on the grounds of prior sexual abuse...and was turned down. The full (and warning - rather graphic) story is here. And I've been suffering PTSD ever since.

Anyway, wanting justice and for it to never happen to another woman, I lodged a formal complaint with the HCCC, despite warnings from others that they can be rather useless. It went back and forward for months. Last week I got the final response. The nurse and hospital in question lied about what had happened, and the HCCC took their word for it. Case dismissed.

I cried. I threw things. Then this morning I woke up with a fresh determination. I had been planning to appeal my complaint with the NSW Health ombudsman, but I've decided to give up on complaining. I'll not get justice for what happened to me, and I think I can make peace with that. What I can do is help make sure it never happens to anyone else, and that's where you come in.

I've created a petition on change.org asking the NSW Health Minister, Jillian Skinner, to protect the rights of sexual assault survivors giving birth in NSW public hospitals to choose the birth they need - guaranteeing the right to a caesarean section if they wish. Please sign, please share with as many people as you can. It's my dear hope that we'll get enough support that the minister will look at this petition and make changes to the law so no woman is forced to cry and plead and beg, go through an induction or forceps or episiotomy or any more trauma after the trauma they've already been through. A huge part of the trauma for sexual abuse survivors is the loss of control, of bodily autonomy. To be victimised again by the hospital system is something no one should have to go through. I want to make sure they don't have to. Please help.

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