Mr. Speaker, on Sunday, Hélène Pedneault was honoured posthumously as “patriot of the year” by the Saint Jean Baptiste society. Although she has been gone for a year now, this compassionate and articulate woman of great intellect still lives on in our memory. Until the end, Hélène Pedneault's trademark indignation continued to drive her to take up causes and fight for what was right.
She was an activist of conviction and a convincing activist who waded into many a battle. She fought for equality between men and women. She co-founded the Eau Secours organization to ensure that water remains public property and accessible to everyone. She worked tirelessly within the Bloc Québécois in Joliette and on the Conseil de la souveraineté in order to help Quebec become its own country with its own voice on the world stage.
Her literary accomplishments and her work as a journalist show that the written and spoken word can become tremendous tools for social and political change. We will remember Hélène Pedneault as a friend, an activist, a humanist and, most of all, as a patriot.