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Laverne Cox praises Planned Parenthood for serving transgender community

NEW YORK — Transgender actress and activist Laverne Cox used her platform to praise Planned Parenthood for providing health care to transgender people around the country at its annual gala. The actress was honored by Planned Parenthood of New York City at Tuesday night's gala.

"So often when we talk about women's health care, we leave out transgender women," Cox told the crowd. She said she felt that the struggle for safe and affordable women's health care was strongly linked to the struggle of transgender people for the same thing.

In 2014, Cox became the first openly transgender person to be nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award.

Outgoing Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards also was honored Tuesday. She stepped down this week as head of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America after 12 years.

Richards told the crowd that when she began in the job, Planned Parenthood had 3 million supporters, and the organization now has 12 million. "For comparison, that's now more than twice the size of the National Rifle Association," she said, to cheers in the room.

Also at the event were actresses Uma Thurman, Sarah Jessica Parker, Chloe Sevigny, and Molly Ringwald, among others.

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