Tributes pour in for Monique Bégin, 'trailblazer' and former federal cabinet minister

OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he is mourning the loss of Monique Bégin, a former cabinet minister and academic who died Friday at the age of 87.

Trudeau says Bégin's was a "trailblazer for Canadian women," whose election to Parliament in 1972 made her one of the first of three women from Quebec to serve in the House of Commons.

He said in a statement that Bégin made her mark on the country by introducing the Canada Health Act and a child tax credit before leaving politics and returning to academia after more than a decade in public life.

Former NDP leader Ed Broadbent says Bégin was a much-loved leader who leaves an important legacy, and he noted that she served on the first board of the Broadbent Institute, a progressive thank tank he founded in 2011.

The University of Ottawa, where Bégin landed after leaving politics, says she played a significant role in shaping the institution where she served as chair of women's studies and was later named dean of the school's faculty of health sciences.

In a statement released Saturday, the Comité Hommage à Monique Bégin says she passed away peacefully at her home in Ottawa, surrounded by her family.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published September 10, 2023.

The Canadian Press