1st Session, 42nd Parliament,
Volume 150, Issue 88

Wednesday, December 14, 2016
The Honourable George J. Furey, Speaker


The Honourable Nancy Ruth, C.M.

Hon. Mobina S. B. Jaffer: Honourable senators, I rise to pay tribute to my dear friend Senator Nancy Ruth and her unflinching commitment to equal rights for women. To most of you, she is a senator from Toronto. But for me, she is also a very loving and loyal friend with whom I share a lot in common. We both are daughters of strong men and politicians. We are both lawyers and much more.

However, most important among the traits we share is we have both fought hard for women’s rights, often at a personal cost. Rather than taking the easy path, we devote our lives to equality for women.

As many of you know, Nancy Ruth has put tremendous energy towards achieving equality for Canadian women. Unlike many, she walks her talk. Instead of spending money on her comfort, she chooses to donate millions to support the rights of women. Nancy Ruth is also relentless in fighting for women’s rights. She has fought to make our museums portray lives of Canadian women; she has fought to appoint more women in our institutions; and she has fought especially hard in pushing for gender-based analysis of legislation.

During Mr. Harper’s government, she was and still is persistent in asking all people defending legislation whether they have carried out a gender-based analysis, especially when the budget is concerned. This persistence has earned my friend a nickname of “Ms. Gender-Based Analysis.”

Senator Nancy Ruth has never taken the easy path. To this day, I still marvel at how hard she has worked over the years to get the Canadian national anthem changed. Even during her very last day here in the Senate, she still works to achieve equality between men and women in our national anthem.

Senator Nancy Ruth, I am truly proud to call you my friend. You have been a friend that has always tried to be there for me. You have always known when I am facing challenges. You have walked into my office saying you have come to eat my popcorn when you were really there for me. As my colleague and my friend, you have always watched my back, given me good counsel and, most of all, made me laugh.

While your time at the Senate may end this year, I know our friendship will endure for the rest of our lives. Senator Nancy Ruth, thank you for your love and friendship. I will truly miss you.