WASHINGTON WATCH: Eleanor Hinton Hoytt On The Susan G. Komen Controversy, Black Women’s Health | Roland Martin Reports

WASHINGTON WATCH: Eleanor Hinton Hoytt On The Susan G. Komen Controversy, Black Women’s Health

Last week, Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, a leading breast cancer charity, announced it would no longer provide funding to Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood received nearly $700,000 from Komen last year, according to the Associated Press, and much of that is used to provide mammograms for women in underserved neighborhoods.
Komen said their rules prohibited grants to organizations under investigation. The investigation? GOP congressman Cliff Stearns announced an investigation of Planned Parenthood over abortions, but the furor was so great, Komen backed off and now says it will not cut off grants to Planned Parenthood.

Here to talk about that and what women should be doing to protect their health is Eleanor Hinton Hoytt, president and CEO of the Black Women’s Health Imperative and author of Health First: The Black Woman’s Wellness Guide.

 

MR. MARTIN:  Earlier this week, Susan G. Komen [Race] for the Cure, a leading breast cancer charity, announced it would no longer provide funding to Planned Parenthood.  Planned Parenthood received nearly $700,000 from Komen last year, according to the Associated Press, and much of that is used to provide mammograms for women in underserved neighborhoods.

Komen said their rules prohibited grants to organizations under investigation.  The investigation?  GOP congressman Cliff Stearns announced an investigation of Planned Parenthood over abortions, but the furor was so great, Komen backed off and now says it will not cut off grants to Planned Parenthood.

Here to talk about that and what women should be doing to protect their health is Eleanor Hinton Hoytt, president and CEO of the Black Women’s Health Imperative and author of Health First:  The Black Woman’s Wellness Guide.

Welcome to “Washington Watch.”

MS. ELEANOR HINTON HOYTT:  Thank you very much.  I’m –

MR. MARTIN:  First –

MS. HOYTT:  — glad to be here.

MR. MARTIN:  — what do you make of this whole controversy?  I mean when it – when it took place on Tuesday, I said on Twitter – I said, “This is going to cause women to go crazy across this country.”

It’s exactly what happened over a 72-hour period.

MS. HOYTT:  Aren’t we lucky?

[CHUCKLING.]

MS. HOYTT:  This was a sad day in women’s history and a continuous assault on women’s health.  Unfortunately, Komen caved in and put politics over the lives of people, because the reality is that Planned Parenthood provides services to low-income women, rural women, Appalachian women that no other organization provides.  So, it doesn’t matter what you think of Planned Parenthood.  Whether you like them or not, you have to accept the fact that they save lives.

MR. MARTIN:  I- — isn’t it also, I believe, Planned Parenthood has to do a much better job of marketing itself?  Because frankly, look, when you create the impression – when you say “Planned Parenthood,” a lot of people only think “abortion,” as opposed to a lot more – a num- — number of things that they actually do, as you just laid out.

MS. HOYTT:  Absolutely.  They must do a better job.  And we have petitioned, and we are now working with them, to help them do that better –

MR. MARTIN:  Really?

MS. HOYTT:  — job.

MR. MARTIN:  Okay.

MS. HOYTT:  Oh, absolutely – because they’re needed in our communities to serve women who need affordable, available and accessible healthcare services – not just abortion.  But Komen needs to do a better job.

MR. MARTIN:  Good point.

Now, let’s t- — you talk about those services, and you – and you have this book, The Black Women’s Wellness Guide.  And what’s interesting when we talk about breast cancer, African-American[s] get breast – African-American women get breast cancer at a low rate than White women, but die much faster, pri- — primarily because they find out much later in the stages.  Also, when you look at heart disease, women are wearing red Friday and all – all this weekend because that’s a huge issue.  More women die of heart disease more than cancer.  [The] same thing affects African-American women.

So, why is it so important for – to have this book and for women to understand, “Look, we[’ve] got to be about us and not” – “not always care for everybody else”?

MS. HOYTT:  Health First is a must-have book, because it put[s] [forth] an awful lot of truths, but it also helps put the facts before us –

MR. MARTIN:  Um-hum.

MS. HOYTT:  — such as Black women —  young Black women under 40 die at a higher rate than any other women.  And that is not well known.

MR. MARTIN:  And one of those [reasons] is because HIV/AIDS – Black women, frank[ly], the lead- — the face of AIDS today is a heterosexual, Black woman.

MS. HOYTT:  Absolutely.  And so the issues are not as clear, because no one’s putting the facts before us.  No one is helping us put ourselves put ourselves first so that we can do more in terms of closing the gaps, achieving health equity and living healthy lives.

MR. MARTIN:  Now, where can folks get the book?

MS. HOYTT:  Oh.  I’m glad you asked that question.  You can go to amazon.com and help us become a bestseller.  During the month of February, you can give it as a gift for Valentine’s Day to your honey and your daughters and your mothers.  And so it – you can also go to our website:  www.blackwomens healthfirst.com.

MR. MARTIN:  Okay.  Well, we certainly appreciate it.  Thanks for being on the show.

And again, everybody, this is the book, Health First.  Be sure to get it.  And again, we[’ve] got to make sure – we talk about keeping brothers on this show healthy.  We[’ve] got to keep our sisters healthy as well.

El- — Eleanor, we certainly appreciate it.  Thanks a lot.

MS. HOYTT:  Thank you for having me.