WHEREAS, the health of mothers and their families is of high priority to the State of North Carolina; the period spanning pregnancy through the first two years postpartum is a universal time of vulnerability with serious concerns, including rising maternal mortality and racial inequities in outcomes for mothers across the nation; and

WHEREAS, approximately 117,000 babies are born in North Carolina each year and the maternal health, specifically the mental health of perinatal people before, during, and after pregnancy, is an issue of great concern to themselves and their families; and

WHEREAS, at least 20 percent of new and expectant mothers are affected by a perinatal mood and anxiety disorder such as depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, anxiety, and psychosis; and

WHEREAS, mothers may experience associated symptoms, which are often overlooked and heavily stigmatized because new and expectant mothers suffering from a perinatal mood disorder often feel confused, ashamed, and isolated; and

WHEREAS, African American, Indigenous, and Latinx women of color, teenage mothers, women having socioeconomic challenges, and military mothers are up to four times more likely to experience a perinatal mood and anxiety disorder; and

WHEREAS, many at-risk women may not seek help because they are not informed about perinatal mood and anxiety disorders as part of their health care due to lack of knowledge for screening and assessment tools, treatment, and community support services; and

WHEREAS, maternal health is essential for women and families of all backgrounds; collectively supporting maternal mental health can help improve the availability and access to effective treatment, prevention, and support services, ensuring better and more equitable outcomes for all; and

WHEREAS, the State of North Carolina encourages collaboration with local and national coalitions, organizations, and agencies to facilitate increased awareness and education about maternal mental health;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, ROY COOPER, Governor of the State of North Carolina, do hereby proclaim May, 2024, as “MATERNAL MENTAL HEALTH MONTH” in North Carolina, and commend its observance to all citizens.


Roy Cooper


IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and affixed the Great Seal of the State of North Carolina at the Capitol in Raleigh this thirtieth day of April in the year of our Lord two thousand and twenty-four and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-eighth.

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