Ottawa – Denyse Guy, Executive Director of Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada, issued the following statement today following the death of the Honourable Mauril Bélanger:

“Mauril worked resolutely for his constituents in Ottawa-Vanier and was a national voice for minority francophone rights, arts & culture, and women’s equality. His work from 2012 to October 2015 as the Liberal Advocate for Co-operatives made him a champion and a friend to us all in the co-operative movement.”

“It was Mauril Bélanger who called for the Special Committee on Co-operatives in Canada in 2012, during the International Year of Co-operatives, a vital step in building understanding about the role co-operatives and mutuals play in Canada’s economy. It was Mauril who organized the All Party Caucus on co-operatives and worked with us to continue building momentum for co-operative solutions in Canada.”

“In 2015, we took the opportunity to thank Mauril at our Annual Parliamentary Reception, just two days before he received his diagnosis. The loss of his eloquent voice was difficult to witness that day, but no one understood how tragic the diagnosis would be.”

“Mauril was a warm, sincere person, who spoke constantly about issues that were nonpartisan and of universal value to his constituents and to all Canadians. His public life is an example to all citizens and to all parliamentarians, regardless of party allegiance. He exemplified grace and class even in heated debate.”

“In spring 2016 CMC Awarded Mauril with our highest honour, the Achievement Award. As the first Advocate for Co-operatives in Parliament he will be remembered as part of our family.”

“To Mauril’s family we offer our heartfelt condolences.  Goodbye good friend, you will be missed by co-operators from coast-to-coast.”

For more information, please contact:

Brendan Denovan
Communications Manager, Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada
(819) 743-7144