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Komen decision triggering petitions, donations

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February 01, 2012|By Shari Roan, Los Angeles Times / For the Booster Shots blog
  • The Komen Foundation, which uses an iconic pink symbol to raise awareness for breast cancer research, has decided to stop funding Planned Parenthood's breast-health services. Above, women celebrate Breast Cancer Awareness Day at Dodger Stadium in 2010.
The Komen Foundation, which uses an iconic pink symbol to raise awareness… (Francine Orr / Los Angeles…)

The Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation's decision to yank its funding from Planned Parenthood has triggered a flood of donations to Planned Parenthood and at least two petitions aimed at reversing the decision.

The Komen Foundation, the world's leading breast cancer organization, has confirmed that it will cease providing grants to Planned Parenthood centers nationwide for breast-health services, such as clinical breast exams and referrals for mammograms and biopsies.

The decision has sparked both outrage and praise. On the Komen Foundation message board Wednesday, critical comments opposing the funding decision swamped support for the decision.

At least two petitions have been established to pressure the Komen Foundation to reverse its decision -- one from Credo Action and another at SignOn.org.

Planned Parenthood Federation of America, meanwhile, has launched a Breast Health Emergency Fund to ensure continued funding to Planned Parenthood affiliates that will soon lose their Komen grants.

That fund received a $250,000 gift from the Amy and Lee Fikes family foundation. "We encourage others to join us in replacing the funds lost, so that no woman's health is imperiled by Komen's unfortunate decision," the couple said in a statement.

Anti-abortion groups said Tuesday that pressure from the public led to the Komen Foundation's move to end Planned Parenthood funding. Planned Parenthood provides abortion services as well as a range of reproductive healthcare and primary care, such as breast-health services.

But a Komen spokesperson said the decision was due to recently adopted criteria that forbids funding of any organizations under government investigation. In September, Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.)  launched an inquiry to determine whether Planned Parenthood uses public money to fund abortions.

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