The National Latina Institute praised the Susan G. Komen Foundation's Friday announcement that it reversed its decision to end grants to Planned Parenthood.
After facing a rash of criticism for pro-choice lawmakers and accusations that the breast cancer awareness organization was swayed by political influence, the foundation decide to reverse its decision.
"This decision will undoubtedly save lives, as Komen funds to Planned Parenthood health centers provide breast cancer screenings to women who have no other health care options," said NLIRH executive director Jessica González-Rojas. "We celebrate this just decision and the preventative care that it will provide to Latinas across the country."
The Komen foundation Board of Directors and its founder Nancy Brinker said that the original decision to withdrawal funds was not politically motivated, but meant to set responsible standards for grant money.
"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," the group said, according to Fox News.
Latinas, who make up one quarter of the Planned Parenthood patient population, are 20 percent more likely to die from breast cancer when compared to non-Hispanic white women, even when diagnosed at a similar age and stage, the NLIRH reported.
Almost 40 percent of Latinas have no health insurance, compared with just under 17 percent for white women, and breast cancer screening rates for Hispanic women are also lower than for Caucasians – 69.7 percent compared to 72.7 percent, a study recently released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated.
"Latinas face some of the most serious challenges to getting the help needed to prevent breast cancer, and the Komen Foundation’s decision today will enable Latinas across the country to access the basic preventative health care that all women deserve," the NLIRH stated.