Fight Back! News

News and Views from the People's Struggle

Milwaukee community groups protest plan to close down vital health services

By staff

Milwaukee, WI – Nearly 50 people attended a rally in support of the efforts to keep Next Door Pediatrics open, December 8. Next Door Pediatrics, operated by Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, is one of the only pediatric care centers that serves the vulnerable population on Milwaukee’s predominantly and historically Black North Side.

A number of community organizations were in attendance for the rally, including Milwaukee Innercity Congregations Allied for Hope (MICAH), the Coalition to Save St. Francis Hospital, Reproductive Justice Action Milwaukee, WISDOM and supportive healthcare agency representatives in the area.

(MICAH) stated in a press release regarding the closure of the clinic: “It is clear that Children’s Wisconsin is more interested in following the model of other healthcare corporations like Ascension Wisconsin by divesting from essential services in low-income communities of color. The closure of Next Door Pediatrics Clinic, like the closure of Saint Francis Hospital’s labor and delivery unit last year, is a greedy and racist decision.

“MICAH, the Coalition to Save Saint Francis, partner organizations and our communities will continue fighting and advocating for the continuation of services at Next Door Pediatrics. If Children’s Wisconsin is committed to their mission, they’d be expanding the services of Next Door Pediatrics, not closing the facility.”

Lo Cross, a member of the Milwaukee Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression, said, “These people and corporations do not have the same values of the communities that they are stewards of. They claim to be of the community but community interests in their practices are absent. Everyone wants to write think pieces and story-tell of all the things that Black and brown communities in Milwaukee are inadequate with, with no context as to when and how things are taken from us.”

Cross continues, “That’s why it’s important that we are all here today and continue to show up in support of the efforts to keep Next Door open. Corporations and monied interests may have a long history of disinvestment and exploitation in Milwaukee, but organized communities have a longer and deeper rooted history here of winning all that can be won, including reinvestment in our communities.“

MiCAH, along with other concerned organizations in the city, hope to have a summit to convene around the common issue of preventing healthcare closures in our city and holding those in power accountable.

#MilwaukeeWI #PeoplesStruggles #Healthcare #NAARPR