WEEKLY NEWS DIGEST (January 30-February 5, 2012)


Uproar as Breast Cancer Group Ends Partnership With Planned Parenthood.” By Gardiner Harris and Pam Belluck. New York Times. February 2, 2012. Pink ribbons have for decades been a symbol of resolve and compassion in the face of the deadly disease of breast cancer. Now, that nearly ubiquitous icon has many women seeing red. When the nation’s largest breast cancer advocacy organization considered in October cutting off most of its financial support to the nation’s largest abortion provider, the breast cancer group was hoping for a quiet end to an increasingly controversial partnership. Instead, the organization, the Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation, is now engulfed in a controversy that threatens to undermine one of the most successful advocacy campaigns. The foundation’s decision to eliminate most of its grants to Planned Parenthood for breast cancer screening caused a cascade of criticism from prominent women’s groups, politicians and public health advocates and a similarly strong outpouring of support from conservative women and religious groups that oppose abortion. Now, leaders of both the Komen foundation and Planned Parenthood are accusing each other of bad faith and actions that undermine women. And two organizations dedicated to detecting and curing breast cancer have found themselves on opposite sides of the nation’s divisive debate over abortion. John D. Raffaelli, a Komen board member and Washington lobbyist, said Wednesday that the decision to cut off money to 17 of the 19 Planned Parenthood affiliates it had supported was made because of the fear that an investigation of Planned Parenthood by Representative Cliff Stearns, Republican of Florida, would damage Komen’s credibility with donors. The organization’s longtime support of Planned Parenthood had already cost it some support from anti-abortion forces, Mr. Raffaelli said. But the board feared that charges that Komen supported organizations under federal investigation for financial improprieties could take a further and unacceptable toll on donations, he said. “People don’t understand that a Congressional investigation doesn’t necessarily mean a problem of substance,” Mr. Raffaelli said. “When people read about it in places like Texarkana, Tex., where I’m from, it sounds really bad.” So the Komen board voted that all of its vendors and grantees must certify that they are not under investigation by federal, state or local authorities. But for Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider, being the target of partisan investigations is part of doing business. So Komen’s new rule effectively ended their long partnership and seemed to the health services provider an unacceptable betrayal of their common mission to save women’s lives.
Related stories:
Komen Cuts Planned Parenthood Grants Months After Arrival Of New VP, Who Is Abortion Foe.” Huffington Post. January 31, 2012.
Cancer Group Halts Financing to Planned Parenthood.New York Times. January 31, 2012
Planned Parenthood says Komen decision causes donation spike.Washington Post. February 1, 2012.
Cancer charity halts grants to Planned Parenthood.” No by-line. USA Today. February 1, 2012.
Nonprofit Allies in Rift Over Funding.” Wall Street Journal February 1, 2012.
Planned Parenthood vs. Komen: Women’s Health Giants Face Off Over Abortion.” All Things Considered/National Public Radio. February 1, 2012.
Planned Parenthood will recoup, but will Komen?Washington Post. February 1, 2012.
Komen Foundation’s lamentable choice.” Washington Post. February 1, 2012.
Susan G. Komen chapter: ‘We are absolutely frustrated’ by the decision to defund Planned Parenthood.” Washington Post. February 1, 2012.
Interview: Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards.” Washington Post. February 2, 2012.
What Planned Parenthood actually does, in one chart.” Washington Post. February 2, 2012.
Komen Foundation Pulls Funding For Planned Parenthood.” Morning Edition/National Public Radio. February 2, 2012.
Komen gives new explanation for cutting funds to Planned Parenthood.Washington Post. February 2, 2012.
Komen says Planned Parenthood plans are mischaracterized.” USA Today. February 2, 2012.
Two dozen Senators call on Komen to reverse Planned Parenthood decision.” Washington Post. February 2, 2012.
A Painful Betrayal.” Editorial. New York Times. February 2, 2012
Charity pulls plug on Planned Parenthood, inciting critics.USA Today. February 2, 2012.
Andrea Mitchell To Komen Chief: I’m Expressing ‘Anger’ Of Many People.” Huffington Post. February 2, 2012.
Susan G. Komen Top Officials Resign As Backlash Gains Steam.” Huffington Post. February 2, 2012.
As Komen Defends Itself, Planned Parenthood Rakes In Substitute Funds.” All Things Considered/National Public Radio. February 2, 2012.
“Fury over Komen decision to withhold cancer funds
.” San Francisco Chronicle. February 2, 2012.
Susan G. Komen for the Cure founder defends Planned Parenthood decision; Nancy G. Brinker says abortion is not the reason that grants for breast cancer exams are being cut off. Lawmakers, women’s health advocates and others continue to criticize the move, and both groups see donations pour in.” Los Angeles Times. February 2, 2012.
Shattering the Susan G. Komen Pinkwashing; .” American Prospect. February 2, 2012.
Nonprofits’ Backers Mobilize; Supporters of Breast-Cancer Charity, Planned Parenthood Clash Over Funding.” Wall Street Journal. February 3, 2012.
Race for the Consumer?” By Samuel Bakkila. Harvard Crimson. February 3, 2012.
Bloomberg: Support Komen and PP.” Politico.com. February 3, 2012.
Did Komen aid W.H. on birth control?” Politico.com February 3, 2012.
Newt: Komen reversal ‘unfortunate’.” Politico.com. February 3, 2012.
Mitchell’s ‘passion’ on Komen story.” Politico.com. February 3, 2012.
Komen’s Race To Reverse Course: Questions And A PR Challenge.” All Things Considered/National Public Radio. February 3, 2012.
Susan G. Komen for the Cure has long been under pressure; Antiabortion activists have tried for years to break the foundation’s ties to Planned Parenthood.” Los Angeles Times. February 3, 2012.
Komen reverses decision on funding Planned Parenthood.” USA Today. February 3, 2012.
Susan Komen U-turn on Planned Parenthood funding cut.” BBC News. February 3, 2012.
For Komen, a growing backlash; Urged to restore funds for Planned Parenthood.” Boston Globe/Associated Press. February 3, 2012.
Susan G. Komen Reverses Planned Parenthood Decision, Apologizes, But Does Not Promise To Renew Grants.” Huffington Post. February 3, 2012.
The Komen decision: Cut your losses, move on.” Politico.com. February 3, 2012.
Can Susan G. Komen recover?” Politico.com. February 3, 2012.
Susan G Komen in U-turn over Planned Parenthood funding cut; Nancy Brinker, cancer charity’s CEO, apologises for ‘recent decisions’ and says Komen will honour existing grants.” Guardian. February 3, 2012.
Komen, Catholics and the cost of conscience.” Washington Post. February 3, 2012.
Social Media Flex Muscles Again, Amplifying Protests.” Wall Street Journal. February 4, 2012.
Charity Does an About-Face; Breast-Cancer Group Backs Off Move to Withhold Funds for Planned Parenthood.Wall Street Journal. February 4, 2012.
Susan G. Komen foundation takes steps to rebuild trust after PR fiasco.Washington Post. February 4, 2012.
Texans Lead Battle for Women’s Health.” New York Times. February 4, 2012.
Komen Races To Restore Planned Parenthood Funds.” Weekend Edition Saturday/National Public Radio. February 4, 2012.
Cancer Group Backs Down on Cutting Off Planned Parenthood.” New York Times. February 3, 2012.
Karen Handel, Susan G. Komen’s Anti-Abortion VP, Drove Decision To Defund Planned Parenthood.” Huffington Post. February 5, 2012.

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