Nicholas Rubashkin, M.D., M.A. obtained his MD and MA (Anthropology) from Stanford University and is an obstetrician of Hungarian descent who was born at home. Most recently, he was a visiting scholar at the Institute of Behavioural Sciences at Semmelweis University in Budapest, where he and his team surveyed Hungarian women regarding their preferences and satisfaction with birth care. The survey focuses on many issues particular to maternity care in Central/Eastern Europe, such as informal cash payments. In December 2013 Nick returned to hospital work in San Francisco, California and is currently applying to graduate research fellowships. He is also a board member of the organisation Human Rights in Childbirth.
Elena Ateva is a human rights attorney and an activist for women’s rights in childbirth. She co-founded a non-profit organization in Bulgaria in 2009 to advocate for human rights in childbirth. In 2014, she joined Human Rights in Childbirth as an Eastern Europe Legal Advocacy Coordinator and later as a member of the Board of Directors. Previously, she has worked on domestic violence and trafficking in women issues in Bulgaria and the United States. Elena has worked on national human rights education campaigns in Bulgaria, focusing on the right to informed consent, the right not to be separated from your baby, and the right to privacy and respect during childbirth. She is particularly interested in utilizing UN human rights mechanisms for the protection and full realization of women’s rights in childbirth.
Bashi Kumar Hazard
Bashi Hazard is an Australian lawyer and the principal of B W Law, a legal practice established to support and assist women and children, and the Legal Director of the ANZ arm of the Human Rights in Childbirth (HRiC) International Lawyers Network. Bashi’s background is in competition and consumer law, and litigation, developed while working for several years with Allens in Sydney, immediately after graduating with first class honours in Law and Economics from the University of Sydney. Under her maiden surname “Kumar”, Bashi has written and spoken on issues relating to competition and trade practices law, legal professional privilege, and the ethics of free speech and philosophy of law. Bashi’s focus in law expanded soon after she had her first child. From her own experiences, Bashi became aware of the widespread impact of current obstetric models of care on the emotional health and wellbeing of mothers. That awareness took her back to working with fundamental ethical principles and human rights law, and forming networks with human rights lawyers in the USA, Netherlands, UK and Europe, with whom she now works closely to develop a legal discourse about the human rights of women in pregnancy and childbirth. Since then, Bashi has presented papers and keynote speeches at the following conferences:
March 2012, “Why does it matter where and how women give birth?” Place of Birth Conference (Keynote Speech), University of Westmead, Sydney;
August 2012, Childbirth and the Law Forum (Panel Speaker), Homebirth Australia, Sydney;
March 2013, Human Rights and Childbirth: Dignity, Respect & Responsibility (Panel Speaker), La Trobe University, Melbourne;
June 2013, “Human Rights in Childbirth: The Future is Now”, 5th Annual Obstetric Malpractice Conference (Presenter), IIR Healthcare Conferences, Melbourne;
March 2014, “Human Rights and Legal Perspectives on Maternity Care for the Future”, Remembering the Past and Creating the Future for Maternity Care: 25 Years since the Shearman Report (Presenter), University of Technology Sydney & NSW Kids and Families, Sydney.
When she is not working for someone else, Bashi is raising 3 young children, teaching ethics and building an ecologically sustainable house.