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When we lose the right to be different, we lose the privilege to be free.

— Charles Evans Hughes

Certain groups of women may be at increased risk for breast cancer, or may have important experiences and needs that should be taken into consideration during screening, diagnosis, treatment, and survivorship of breast cancer. Women can experience significant barriers to care for a variety of reasons. Many minority groups in the United States face challenges in getting quality healthcare.

While all women are at risk for getting breast cancer, there may be some unique issues to consider for women of different ethnic, religious or cultural groups. In this section, we focus on the following groups:

  • African American Women
  • Hispanic American/Latina Women
  • Native American Women
  • Asian American and Pacific Islander Women
  • Women of Ashkenazi (Eastern European) Jewish descent

We include resources for information and support that are specific to women of different multicultural groups. Where possible, we include support groups of women with similar backgrounds. There are also a number of advocacy organizations for each group.

Please check other sections in the Resource Directory for information about breast cancer diagnosis, treatment, support, and other issues. Many organizations have resources for specific groups as well as Spanish or other language translations.

NOTE: Most research about ethnicities and cancer describes cancer rates and figures for the following ethnic groups: White/Caucasian, Black/African American, Hispanic, American Indian/Native American (usually includes Alaska Natives), and Asian/Pacific Islander. We use the same categories in the following sections. For individuals and healthcare professionals who work with the groups listed above, we have included some information that may be helpful.

Unless otherwise noted, material for these sections was drawn largely from National Cancer Institute educational publications (800.4.CANCER or and the National Women’s Health Information Center (


Breast Cancer Resource Directory of North Carolina | Third Edition 2006 - 2007

Copyright 2006, Jamie Konarski Davidson, Women Helping Women, Elizabeth Mahanna, North Carolina Institute for Public Health, and UNC’s Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center. Portions of the Breast Cancer Resource Directory of North Carolina may be copied without permission for educational purposes only. The Breast Cancer Resource Directory of North Carolina is designed for educational purposes only and is not engaged in rendering medical advice or professional services. The information provided through the Breast Cancer Resource Directory of North Carolina should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or a disease. It is not a substitute for professional care. If you have or suspect you may have a health problem, you should consult your healthcare provider.

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