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Planned Parenthood CEO Outlines Next Steps Following Roe v. Wade Overturn

AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

In an interview this week, Planned Parenthood’s CEO Alexis McGill Johnson outlined the organization’s next steps in ensuring women have access to abortions after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, which legalized abortion in the United States in 1973.


McGill Johnson shared the abortion organization’s three major goals with The Guardian. First, she wants to help women seeking an abortion cross state lines in order to do so. While several states like Mississippi and Texas have trigger laws intended to restrict access to abortion, states like California and New York are working to expand access to abortion and direct funds to accommodate out-of-state patients.

“What we can see, essentially, is just a lot of chaos, a lot of confusion and a lot of concern for patients on the ground being able to get the care they need,” McGill Johnson told the Guardian. “What we’ve also seen is a significant amount of rage.”

Next, McGill Johnson wants to win lawsuits in state courts where abortion access is restricted. The Guardian pointed out that Planned Parenthood, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the Center for Reproductive Rights have filed 11 lawsuits to delay abortion bans or have them struck down.

And, McGill Johnson wants to “win at the ballot box” where constituents vote for pro-abortion politicians.

“Our work right now is to maximize the care that we can in the states that we can, and also take this moment as an opportunity to maximize mobilization,” she told The Guardian. In the meantime, she explained that Planned Parenthood is creating “logistics centers” and other resources so there is capacity for out-of-state patients at “surge sites.”

“Patient ‘navigators’ will connect women to charities to help pay for both abortions and the costs of a long journey: gas, airfare and hotel stays. McGill Johnson’s hope is, eventually, to help build out a kind of online travel agency to access abortion,” The Guardian noted.


On the day Roe was overturned, McGill Johnson said in a video posted to Twitter that Planned Parenthood will “fight for rights stronger than Roe.”

“No court or state will make us compromise our bodies, our dignity or our freedom,” she said in the video. 

“Let me be clear: this won’t stop us,” she added. 

Since then, Democrats like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (MA) said that Planned Parenthood should set up “outposts” on federal land. Specifically, national parks.

However, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre brushed off Warren and AOC's idea.

"We understand the proposal is well-intentioned, but here's the thing, it could actually put women and providers at risk," Jean-Pierre said. She added that there are "dangerous ramifications" for putting Planned Parenthood clinics in national parks. 

"In states where abortion is now illegal, women and providers who are not federal employees, as you look at the federal lands, could be potentially prosecuted," she explained. 

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