COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) -- Declining donations have forced Focus on the Family, an influential evangelical ministry with a global media reach and national political clout, to cut $5 million from its budget and lay off 34 employees.
The layoffs are the first in the ministry's 26 years, a spokesman said. Another 66 vacant positions will be eliminated from the 1,300-member work force.
The Colorado Springs-based ministry airs 14 radio and television programs in more than 100 countries to a potential audience of 200 million and publishes more than a dozen periodicals.
President James Dobson is considered one of the country's most influential voices among conservative Christian leaders and weighs in regularly on such issues as abortion, homosexuality and Republican politics.
Focus's budget, $130 million this year, comes entirely from donations, which have dropped about 3 percent from 1999 as the economy slowed, the stock market declined and unemployment rose.
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