Wednesday, February 1, 2012

War on Women Ceased by the Ladies

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UPDATE: We have been distressed at the presumption that the changes made to our funding criteria were done for political reasons or to specifically penalize Planned Parenthood.  They were not. Statement from Susan G. Komen Board of Directors and Founder and CEO Nancy G. Brinker.


DALLAS - February 3, 2012 - "We want to apologize to the American public for recent decisions that cast doubt upon our commitment to our mission of saving women’s lives.  The events of this week have been deeply unsettling for our supporters, partners and friends and all of us at Susan G. Komen.  We have been distressed at the presumption that the changes made to our funding criteria were done for political reasons or to specifically penalize Planned Parenthood.  They were not.

Our original desire was to fulfill our fiduciary duty to our donors by not funding grant applications made by organizations under investigation.  We will amend the criteria to make clear that disqualifying investigations must be criminal and conclusive in nature and not political. That is what is right and fair.

Our only goal for our granting process is to support women and families in the fight against breast cancer.  Amending our criteria will ensure that politics has no place in our grant process.  We will continue to fund existing grants, including those of Planned Parenthood, and preserve their eligibility to apply for future grants, while maintaining the ability of our affiliates to make funding decisions that meet the needs of their communities.

It is our hope and we believe it is time for everyone involved to pause, slow down and reflect on how grants can most effectively and directly be administered without controversies that hurt the cause of women.  We urge everyone who has participated in this conversation across the country over the last few days to help us move past this issue.  We do not want our mission marred or affected by politics – anyone’s politics.

Starting this afternoon, we will have calls with our network and key supporters to refocus our attention on our mission and get back to doing our work.  We ask for the public’s understanding and patience as we gather our Komen affiliates from around the country to determine how to move forward in the best interests of the women and people we serve.

We extend our deepest thanks for the outpouring of support we have received from so many in the past few days and we sincerely hope that these changes will be welcomed by those who have expressed their concern."


Susan G. Komen for the Cure is halting its partnerships with Planned Parenthood affiliates. “It sounds almost trite, going through this with Betsi, but cancer doesn’t care if you’re pro-choice, anti-choice, progressive, conservative” - “Victims of cancer could care less about people’s politics.”

The change will mean a cutoff of hundreds of thousands of dollars in grants, mainly for breast exams.
Planned Parenthood says the move results from Komen bowing to pressure from anti-abortion activists. 

The rupture, which has not been publicly announced as it unfolded, is wrenching for some of those who’ve learned about it and admire both organizations. “We’re kind of reeling,” said Patrick Hurd, who is CEO of Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Virginia — recipient of a 2010 grant from Komen — and whose wife, Betsi, is a veteran of several Komen fundraising races and is currently battling breast cancer.

Planned Parenthood said the Komen grants totaled roughly $680,000 last year and $580,000 the year before, going to at least 19 of its affiliates for breast-cancer screening and other breast-health services.

Komen spokeswoman Leslie Aun said the cutoff results from the charity’s newly adopted criteria barring grants to organizations that are under investigation by local, state or federal authorities. According to Komen, this applies to Planned Parenthood because it’s the focus of an inquiry launched by Rep. Cliff Stearns, R-Fla., seeking to determine whether public money was improperly spent on abortions.

Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, has depicted Stearns’ probe as politically motivated and said she was dismayed that it had contributed to Komen’s decision to halt the grants to PPFA affiliates.

“It’s hard to understand how an organization with whom we share a mission of saving women’s lives could have bowed to this kind of bullying,” Richards told The Associated Press. “It’s really hurtful.”

Anti-abortion groups, in contrast, welcomed the news. The Alliance Defense Fund praised Komen “for seeing the contradiction between its lifesaving work and its relationship with an abortionist that has ended millions of lives.”

Posted on its web site, Planned Parenthood states that is the nation's leading sexual and reproductive health care provider and advocate. Planned Parenthood also works with partner organizations worldwide to improve the sexual health and well-being of individuals and families everywhere.

Nearly three million women and men in the United States annually visit Planned Parenthood affiliate health centers for trusted health care services and information.

Eighty percent of Planned Parenthood health care clients in the U.S. are age 20 and older.

One in five women in the U.S. has visited a Planned Parenthood health center at least once in her life.

Planned Parenthood health centers focus on prevention: 76 percent of our clients receive services to prevent unintended pregnancy. Planned Parenthood services help prevent more than 584,000 unintended pregnancies each year.

Planned Parenthood provides nearly 770,000 Pap tests and nearly 750,000 breast exams each year, critical services in detecting cancer. Planned Parenthood provides more than four million tests and treatments for sexually transmitted infections, including HIV.

Three percent of all Planned Parenthood health services are abortion services.

Birth Control Pills Could Lead to Pregnancy

About 1 million packets of birth control pills are being recalled in the U.S. by Pfizer because a packaging mishap could increase the likelihood of pregnancy.

The affected pills include 14 lots of Lo/Ovral-28 tablets and 14 lots of generic Norgestrel and Ethinyl Estradiol tablets. All the pills were marketed by Akrimax Rx Products and have expiration dates ranging from July 31, 2013, to March 31, 2014. They were distributed to warehouses, clinics and pharmacies throughout the U.S.

Birth control pills typically contain 21 days of hormone-laden, or active, tablets and 7 days of placebo pills. But some of the recalled packets have too many active tablets while others don’t have enough, and some of the pills may be out of sequence.


"Life Begins at erection"
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