Midwives in the States and Territories around Australia formed Special Interest Groups (SIG) within the various nursing bodies of the time.
Australian Trained Nurses Association (ATNA)
Royal Victorian Trained Nurses’ Association (RVTNA), later the Royal Victorian College of Nursing (RVCN)
Royal Australian Nursing Federation (RANF)
Group of midwives met regularly to discuss issues affecting midwifery, hold education sessions and conferences, and draw collegial support from all these activities.
Victoria: A ‘branch’ (SIG) was formed was within Royal Victorian College of Nursing (RVCN) in September 1950. The inaugural meeting was held at the Women’s Hospital, Carlton, with Miss Joan Usher taking the role of Chair. A fee of 1 shilling per head was collected at each meeting (quarterly) to cover the cost of supper. Originally called the Obstetric Sisters Section, the name changed to Midwives Section in 1955, and the fees had risen to 5 shillings a year. In 1975, a Midwives Special Interest Group was formed within the RANF (Vic).
NSW: A SIG was formed within the ATNA, and later the the NSW Nurses Association. In 1976-1977 NSW Midwives seceded from the NSW Nurses Association, and reformed as a midwives SIG in the RANF (NSW).
SA: the Midwives Special Interest Group within RANF (SA) was formed in the 1960’s.
The histories of Qld, WA, TAS, ACT and NT are still being explored!
This move to SIG within the RANF State Branches eventually enabled a national organisation of midwives to be formed as a Special Interest group of the National RANF.