THIS JUST IN: After a massive public outcry against the Susan G. Komen Foundation’s decision to pull funding for breast cancer screenings from Planned Parenthood, the largest breast cancer charity in the world has issued an apology.
In case you had any doubt that your Facebook posts and tweets make a difference…
“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,” Nancy G. Brinker, Komen’s chief executive, said in a statement posted on the organization’s Web site. The statement added, “We will continue to fund existing grants, including those of Planned Parenthood, and preserve their eligibility to apply for future grants.”
The reversal comes in the face of an enormous furor over the decision and widespread complaints that the Komen foundation was tying breast cancer to the abortion issue. Comments on social networks like Facebook and Twitter raged about the move, and donations, including a $250,000 matching grant from Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg of New York City, poured into Planned Parenthood, allowing it to compensate for the $700,000 in Komen money that would have been cut.
In a public statement, the foundation is has insisted that the move to cut Planned Parenthood’s funding was not political in nature, but did acknowledge that political dynamics around the highly-charged abortion had made the decision controversial.
“The events of this week have been deeply unsettling for our supporters, partners and friends and all of us at Susan G. Komen,” the the foundation’s publist said. “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.”
Cecile Richards, the president of Planned Parenthood, had this to say about the response on social media: “I have never seen anything catch fire like I have the outpouring [of support] from people of all walks of life.”
So there you have it… the power of social media realized! Did you post about the Komen-Planned Parenthood debacle? What was your reaction?