Reporting Kai Jackson
BALTIMORE (WJZ)– A change of heart for the Susan G. Komen Foundation three days after it pulled funds for cancer-screening away from Planned Parenthood.
Kai Jackson has more on the fallout that fueled the change.
The Komen Foundation got an earful over its initial decision to pull Planned Parenthood funding. The outcome indicates it heard that earful loud and clear.
There was no running from the controversy created by Susan G. Komen for the Cure, when the organization yanked funding this week from Planned Parenthood.
“I think we’ve seen this week a disgraceful display of Planned Parenthood using real thug tactics to try to bring political pressure on the Komen foundation,” Charmaine Yoest, of Americans United For Life, said.
Yet, public outrage forced Komen to reverse its decision and reinstate funding on Friday.
“It’s really critical funding and it would have been very devastating to, I mean, not just Planned Parenthood but the women that we serve,” Christielyn Dyller of Planned Parenthood of Maryland.
Komen issued a statement saying, “We want to apologize to the American public for decisions that cast doubt upon our commitment to our mission of saving women’s lives.”
“I look at these groups like sister groups, you know,” said Vera Newton, a breast cancer survivor in Randallstown.
Komen broke that bond citing a federal investigation into accusations that Planned Parenthood used federal dollars for abortions– a charge Planned Parenthood denies.
“Planned Parenthood uses the overwhelming majority of its money– nationwide, I think it’s 97 percent– to deal with treatment,” Sen. Ben Cardin (D), said.
Komen raises the most money of any breast cancer organization in the country, and Planned Parenthood is the largest provider of reproductive health services in America, with most clients at or below the poverty level.
Newton supports both.
“It’s what we believe Susan Komen is all about. It’s why we walk 60 miles,” she said.
Planned Parenthood said it received $3 million in three days during this controversy. But critics of Planned Parenthood say that is just further proof that it doesn’t need the $700,000 a year that the Komen Foundation provides.
Planned Parenthood of Maryland says the organization also provides free breast exams to its clients.