Komen says Planned Parenthood Controversy is Mischaracterized

Nancy BrinkerThe founder of Susan G. Komen for the Cure said Thursday that there had
been a “gross mischaracterization” about the group’s controversial
decision to stop funding breast exams at Planned Parenthood.

Pictured: Nancy Brinker, founder of the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation (now Susan G Komen for the Cure)

Komen, the country’s largest breast cancer
charity, gave $680,000 to Planned Parenthood last year to provide health
education and breast exams to poor and uninsured women. Komen, which
helped popularize pink ribbons as a symbol of breast cancer awareness,
will not renew most of those grants because of a new policy denying
money to groups under investigation. Planned Parenthood is being
investigated by Rep. Cliff Stearns, R-Fla., for possibly using taxpayer money for abortions.

“This has been a contentious issue and one where the (public’s) sense of our organization has been lost,” said Nancy Brinker,
Komen’s founder and CEO. ” Our only mission is to find treatments and
cures for this disease. … When you grant $93 million, you have to be
sure that you are granting it to the right people.”

controversy hasn’t hurt Komen financially, Brinker said: Contributions
“are up 100% in the past two days.” Planned Parenthood also got a
boost from the controversy, raising $650,000 in the 24 hours after the
news broke, with an additional $250,000 pledge from New York City Mayor
Michael Bloomberg.

Brinker said there will be no sudden loss of services for poor women.

of the 19 affected Planned Parenthood programs (northern Colorado;
Orange County, Calif.; and Waco, Texas) will continue to be funded
because they are the only services for low-income women in their
communities, Brinker said. The other programs will be funded through
the end of the year. “There will be no gap in services to these
low-income women,” she said. 


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