Childbirth International maintains a grievance procedure with the following aims:
- to systematically address specific instances of misconduct by Childbirth International Birth and Lactation Professionals
- to remedy misconduct where possible
- to support accountability of individual Birth and Lactation Professionals as well as Childbirth International as a certifying body and professional association
- to support professional standards in the doula, childbirth educator and lactation counselor professions
- to ensure fairness in the grievance procedure.
If a member of the public, another Birth and Lactation Professional, a health professional, or a member of Childbirth International, (hereinafter referred to as “the Complainant”) has a complaint against the conduct of a Childbirth International Birth and Lactation Professional, this must be put in writing within 12 months of the event taking place, addressed to the Director of Childbirth International (hereinafter referred to as “Director”). Childbirth International employees and officers may also institute a grievance proceeding internally, without a complaint filed by an outside party. The email address to send complaints to is firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Complainant must provide the following information:
- details of the complaint, with dates and an explanation of where the event took place
- details of what action the Complainant has taken so far to remedy the situation
- evidence of the complaint (e.g. screenshots, copies of letters)
- name and contact details of the Complainant
We will not investigate hearsay, or complaints without any evidence. We require the name of the Complainant and will share this with the Birth Professional whom the complaint is made about. We will not investigate anonymous complaints.
The complaint will be investigated by the disciplinary committee (hereinafter referred to as the “Committee”), during which time the Committee may request further supporting documentation and evidence. The student or certified Birth Professional will be contacted for their perspective. The student or certified Birth Professional will have the opportunity to respond to the Committee. The goal for Childbirth International in the case of a complaint is to encourage the Complainant and the Birth Professional to communicate and resolve the problem in a mutually beneficial way. If this is not possible, Childbirth International will review the complaint and, following a decision, may take action as set out below.
Following the investigation, the Committee may take one of the following actions:
- no action taken
- encourage the Complainant and the Birth and Lactation Professional to communicate with each other to find a mutually acceptable solution
- written warning sent to the Birth and Lactation Professional
- temporary withdrawal of Childbirth International certification or access to the student website, pending actions that must be carried out in order for certification or access to be reinstated, including but not limited to, making appropriate amends to the aggrieved party
- permanent withdrawal of certification, membership status and/or enrolment in any training programs, and removal from all forums or websites managed by Childbirth International and their agents.
If a student or graduate is permanently withdrawn as a result of disciplinary action, no refunds will be due.