Komen for the Cure has officially buckled to pressure from Planned Parenthood and 17 affiliates of the national breast cancer charity will provide grants for the abortion business this calendar year.
Komen had long been a subject of national controversy in which pro-life advocates initially boycotted Komen and then celebrated earlier this year as it appeared the breast cancer charity had made the decision to revoke funding for the abortion business. After massive public pressure, media attacks and lobbying from Planned Parenthood, Komen indicates the abortion business would be eligible for funding but did to say whether funding would be continued.
Leading pro-life groups had hoped Komen would keep their de-funding decision in place via a change in grant-making criteria making it so organizations like Planned Parenthood that do not do mammograms would no longer be eligible for so-called pass-through grants in which they merely provide referrals to legitimate medical centers and physicians who do.
However, according to a new Washington Post report, the Komen funding spigot for Planned Parenthood has been turned back on:
At least 17 Planned Parenthood affiliates will be funded this year, about the same number that received grants in 2011, according to a tally provided by Komen. The total amount of the grants, which are for breast-cancer screening and other breast-health services, is still being worked out. Most recipients this year also received funds last year.
A half-dozen applications were turned down, mostly because the local Komen affiliates lacked funds, executives said. It is not unusual for there to be more applicants than available funds, although in some locations the controversy has hurt donations.
Additional grants may continue to be awarded because not all of the 122 Komen affiliates base awards on the fiscal year that began April 1. Planned Parenthood has said its Komen grants totaled about $680,000 in 2011 and went to at least 19 of its 79 affiliates.
Figures from August 2011 directly from the Komen for the Cure foundation show 18 affiliates of the breast cancer charity gave a total of more than $569,000 to the Planned Parenthood abortion business in 2010. That was down from the $731,303 Komen officials publicly confirmed in October 2010, when they acknowledged that 20 of the 122 Komen affiliates gave to Planned Parenthood during the 2009 fiscal year.
Komen spokeswoman Leslie Aun appeared apologetic about the decision to revoke funding to Planned Parenthood, in her comments to the Post.
“We know that people have been upset and concerned about recent events,” she said. “We’ve acknowledged our missteps and apologized. People need to know that we have not and never will walk away from women in need. There is no one filling the gap in services the way that Komen is.”
Pat Heard, chief executive of the Planned Parenthood in Southeastern Virginia, which was denied a grant request for $36,350 because of a lack of funds, said she thinks Komen is back to giving Planned Parenthood the time of day.
“I really think, based on conversations we’ve had informally in our follow-up, that they gave us a fair shake,” she said. “We consider them sisters in the effort for women’s health. We have a great relationship with them.”
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The Post article indicates Komen chapters in Colorado also describe working with Komen hand-in-hand and getting grants from Komen as well. One of the largest grants, for $100,000, went to Planned Parenthood of Nassau County, New York from Komen’s Greater New York City affiliate.
The renewal of funding to the Planned Parenthood abortion business is upsetting for Austin Ruse, the president of the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute, who initially had hoped Komen would stay true to its initial decisions.
“Komen knows the truth about Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood does not do mammograms. It is sad they could not hold out against the mafia-like onslaught of this awful group,” he told LifeNews.
This news will prompt pro-life advocates to renew their boycott of the breast cancer charity, which the Post says is hurting because of the boycotts:
In Southern Arizona, registration for the affiliate’s March 25 race was 7,267, short of the goal of 11,000, according to Jaimie Leopold, Komen’s Southern Arizona executive director. The event raised about $585,000 — donations were still being counted through Friday — short of the $700,000 target.