- (Photo: Reuters/Joshua Roberts)
Susan G. Komen suffered a 22 percent drop in donations last year, which may have been due to the controversy it recently had regarding its monetary ties to Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest abortion provider.
A spokeswoman for the breast cancer awareness organization acknowledged a strong decline in donations, according to the Associated Press.
"Citing audited financial statements posted on its website this week, a spokeswoman for the Dallas-based breast cancer charity said contributions - including donations and corporate sponsorships - dropped from about $164 million from the fiscal year ending in March 2012 to $128 million in the year ending March 2013," reported the AP.
"Komen spokeswoman Andrea Rader attributed the drops to the Planned Parenthood controversy, in addition to economic uncertainty and other events vying for charity dollars."
In November 2011, Susan G. Komen's leadership voted to cut its financial ties to Planned Parenthood, partly due to the organization barring of funding from any group presently under investigation from the government.
News of the policy change was made public in late January 2012 and led to much controversy. Within days of the announcement, the charity reversed its decision and allowed for Planned Parenthood to receive funding once more from Komen.
The Christian Post reported in February 2012 that Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.) had launched an investigation to see if the abortion provider was using public money improperly in providing abortions.
Subsequently, in February 2013, Reps. Diane Black (R-Tenn.), Pete Olson (R-Texas) and Senator David Vitter (R-La.) were among a group of more than 50 members of Congress who requested a report from the GAO on how taxpayer funding is specifically used by Planned Parenthood and other organizations that perform abortions.
Karen Handel, Komen's senior vice president for public policy, resigned in protest following the reversal decision. In an earlier interview with CP, Handel said that she believed in the near future Komen will again cut funding ties to Planned Parenthood.
"I believe that Komen will be at this crossroads again for the following reason: making or doing the best it can do with donor dollars," said Handel in December 2012.
"Being the best stewards of donor dollars is ultimately going to require that Komen shift those dollars because these are not impactful grants. Ultimately, donors are going to demand that."
This was not the first indicator of trouble for Komen due to the controversy. As reported by Pam Fessler of National Public Radio back in June 2012, participation for that year's Race for the Cure event had noticeably declined.
"Participation is down at some of the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure events that raise money for breast cancer research and treatment," wrote Fessler, who claimed, "the foundation may be suffering from the fallout of its decision to stop funding Planned Parenthood programs."
Susan G. Komen did not return comment to The Christian Post by press time.