Despite a line of protesters picketing out front, on Saturday, March 3, Komen for the Cure of Puget Sound raised $825,000—over twice what the organization was projecting—at their annual fancy-pants auction to provide local low-income women with free mammograms, among other things.
"Despite all the recent controversy, our community came together to support mammograms and treatment for low-income women in our area, and fund research for a cure for cancer," says Jim Clune, a spokesman for the local organization. He adds that 75 percent of the funds raised (or $618,750) is slated for mammograms, breast cancer screenings, education, and prevention for low-income and minority women in Western Washington. The other 25 percent will go toward breast cancer research.
Last year, Komen for Puget Sound provided free mammograms to over 13,000 low-income women in the Puget Sound area. However, the local organization is currently better known for the anti-choice antics of Komen national, which last month briefly pulled funding from Planned Parenthood slated for breast-cancer screenings because of Planned Parenthood's pro-choice stance on women's health care. Komen for Puget Sound privately condemned the national board's actions at the time.
I've emailed Occupy Seattle to find out how their protest went. (Word on the street is that fewer than a dozen protesters showed up.) "While we might argue that they were confused, they were also appropriate, peaceful and heartfelt," Clune says of the group. "You have to respect that."