Minister Guergis celebrates Persons Awards recipients at Enbridge Famous 5

OTTAWA, Oct. 2 /CNW Telbec/ - The Honourable Helena Guergis, Minister of State (Status of Women), was pleased to attend the Enbridge Famous 5 Luncheon today, hosted by the Ottawa Famous 5 Committee and sponsored by Enbridge. The Famous 5 Committee holds the Luncheon each year to honour the recipients of the Governor General's Awards in Commemoration of the Persons Case, which recognizes outstanding individuals who have helped to advance the goal of equality for women.

"Thanks to the hard work, vision and courage of the recipients of the Governor General's Awards in Commemoration of the Persons Case, all women have moved forward on the road to equality," said Minister of State Guergis. "The legacy of the Famous Five endures through the contributions of these women. Thanks to the Famous 5 Foundation and to Enbridge, we gather today to honour these outstanding Canadians - and in doing so, we also honour the achievements of those who have gone before us, embedding them in our history, our culture, and in our lives."

On October 1, six Canadians were awarded the 2009 Governor General's Awards in Commemoration of the Persons Case: Jeannette Corbiere Lavell, of Wikwemikong, Ontario; Daphne E. Dumont, of Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island; Bev LeFrancois, of Oakville, Ontario; Karen Messing, of Montréal, Quebec; Mary Scott, of Winnipeg, Manitoba; and Youth Award recipient Pauline Fogarty, of Thunder Bay, Ontario.

This year marks the 80th anniversary of the Persons Case, in which five Canadian women - Emily Murphy, Henrietta Muir Edwards, Louise McKinney, Irene Parlby and Nellie McClung, who became known as the Famous Five - won the right for women to be recognized as persons, and thus eligible to sit in the Senate.

2009 also marks the 30th anniversary of the Governor General's Awards in Commemoration of the Persons Case, which the Government of Canada established in 1979.

The Famous 5 Ottawa Committee is a volunteer group that was instrumental in the development of the Women Are Persons! Monument on Parliament Hill to commemorate the efforts of Emily Murphy, Nellie McClung, Irene Parlby, Henrietta Muir Edwards and Louse McKinney. The Committee also worked to ensure the new $50 bill recognizes women as nation builders.

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SOURCE Status of Women Canada

For further information: For further information: Semhar Tekeste, Special Assistant, Communications, Office of the Minister of State (Status of Women), (819) 956-4000; Nanci-Jean Waugh, Director General, Communications and Strategic Planning, Status of Women Canada, (613) 995-7839

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