Locals See Silver Lining in Komen Controversy

Brooklyn women react to breast cancer awareness group's reversal on defunding Planned Parenthood.

When news broke last week that Susan G. Komen For the Cure , thousands of New Yorkers took to social media outlets like Facebook and Twitter to vent their outrage.

However, with news Tuesday of the resignation of Komen vice president Karen Handel capping the breast cancer awareness group's stunning about-face this week, locals reacted mostly with relief that a key provider of low-cost healthcare for women would continue to receive financial support.

"I honesty never thought it would go this far," said Clinton Hill resident Helen Williams, who has a sister battling the disease. "But now that it has, it's great to see that Komen is serious about putting this behind them."

Erin Fredrickson, standing outside of on Lafayette Avenue, was more blunt in her reaction to reaction to the controversy: "It sucks," she said.

Fredrickson says she uses Planned Parenthood for low-cost contraception, which for her gave the criticism leveled against the organization by many in the pro-life camp less teeth.

"It's about prevention," she said. "Not abortion."

One thing both Fredrickson and Williams saw coming out of the controversy was increased awareness about women's health issues.

Last October, breast cancer survivors and their supporters helped raise $1,070,000 at the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk in Prospect Park, according to event organizer Jessica Peterson.

While Peterson declined to comment on the Komen-Planned Parenthood controversy, she said The American Cancer Society looked forward to raising even more funds for research and treatment at this year's walk, which will be held in Prospect Park on Oct. 21.


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