By Michelle Durham and Natasha Brown
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Susan G. Komen organization has restored funding to Planned Parenthood following criticism from liberal groups and lawmakers, after its decision to stop contributions to Planned Parenthood because of its policy of not funding organizations that are under investigation, which Planned Parenthood is.
It was a decision that took many people by surprise in Philadelphia. Dayle Steinberg, the President and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania, was at a conference out of the country, but spoke about the decision to reverse course.
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“We are so grateful that we can continue to work in partnership with the Susan G. Komen Foundation,” said Steinberg. “We have a shared commitment to life saving treatment for under-served women and we are very, very grateful that the foundation responded to the public outcry of support for Planned Parenthood and the women we serve.”
The Chief Executive Officer of the Philadelphia Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure Elaine Grobman had a similar response.
“I am elated to hear the news that we are re-examining our decision in funding planned parenthood and other organizations,” Grobman.
The Susan G. Komen Board of Directors and Founder and CEO Nancy G. Brinker released the following statement Friday about the reversal.
“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.”