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New York, NY — Alexis McGill Johnson, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, released the following statement on the passing of civil rights leader, Congressman John Lewis. 

Congressman John Lewis at Planned Parenthood’s Affordable Care Act Rally on Capitol Hill on June 28th, 2017. (Planned Parenthood).

Statement from Alexis McGill Johnson, president and CEO, Planned Parenthood Federation of America:

Our country has lost a legend. Like so many in the country, I am devastated by the death of Congressman John Lewis — a beacon of grace, courage, and fearlessness.   Congressman Lewis spent his life fighting against racial inequality, discrimination, and injustice, wherever it appeared. His activism, organizing, and advocacy helped pave the way for justice and the rights we continue to fight for today — everything from voting rights to economic and racial equality. We are a better nation because of him.

“While Congressman John Lewis will be forever missed, his commitment to liberation has inspired so many of us who continue the fight for racial justice and equality today. His legacy will live through the work of community activists and civil rights organizations for generations to come. We see his legacy in the Black Lives Matter movement and in the fight for reproductive justice. As Congressman Lewis once said, ‘freedom is the continuous action we all must take, and each generation must do its part to create an even more fair, more just society.’

“We cannot allow the clock to be turned back on the civil and human rights Congressman John Lewis spent his life fighting to secure. We must honor his legacy by remaining unwavering and unapologetic about getting into ‘good trouble' in the service of freedom. May he rest in peace and power.


Planned Parenthood is the nation’s leading provider and advocate of high-quality, affordable health care for women, men, and young people, as well as the nation’s largest provider of sex education. With more than 600 health centers across the country, Planned Parenthood organizations serve all patients with care and compassion, with respect and without judgment. Through health centers, programs in schools and communities, and online resources, Planned Parenthood is a trusted source of reliable health information that allows people to make informed health decisions. We do all this because we care passionately about helping people lead healthier lives.