NEW YORK – In response to the Susan G. Komen for the Cure’s announcement that it will cease to contribute funding to Planned Parenthood, Marcie Natan, National President of Hadassah, the Women’s Zionist Organization of America, today expressed concern for the future of women’s health issues. Her statement follows:
Hadassah, the Women’s Zionist Organization of America (HWZOA), and many of its chapters have had a relationship with Susan G. Komen for the Cure on many different levels for a number of years. As most people know, in October 2010, Hadassah was honored to be a major partner in the first ever Komen Israel Race for the Cure. Thousands of Hadassah women marched proudly through the streets of Jerusalem in sisterhood with Israelis and millions of other women around the world, just as the women of local Hadassah chapters across the United States work closely with local Komen affiliates to march prominently in local Races for the Cure every year. To encourage all those who care about promoting women’s health and finding a cure for breast cancer, Hadassah has worked with Komen over the years to schedule races at times friendly to observant Jews, avoiding as much as possible races on Shabbat and on Jewish holidays.
Hadassah has long been a social and political advocate for a woman’s right to choose and a strong supporter in the advancement of women’s health, particularly regarding those issues involving breast health and the treatment of and search for a cure for breast cancer.
As a two-time survivor of breast cancer myself, as a supporter of both Komen and Planned Parenthood, and as an advocate for reproductive freedom, I am disappointed that the controversy surrounding Komen’s decision to discontinue its modest funding of Planned Parenthood has become such a distraction that it could endanger our collective dedication to the important issues surrounding women’s health. There is no time to waste in our commitment to the fundamental issues of women’s health, breast cancer and a woman’s right to choose.
Hadassah National President