MALISEET SANDRA LOVELACE NICHOLAS BECOMES 1ST ABORIGINAL WOMAN IN CANADIAN SENATE
Born April 15, 1948, in Maliseet, Tobique First Nation, New Brunswick, Nicholas studied at St. Thomas University and earned a degree from Northern Technical College in Maine. In 1979, she successfully petitioned the United Nations over unequal government treatment of aboriginal women & children in Canada in the case, Sandra Lovelace v. Canada (1977–1981). At that time, under the Indian Act, a First Nations woman’s status was revoked if she married a non-aboriginal man; the law, however, did not apply in reverse. The law also denied status to the woman’s children, even where the First Nation had a matrilineal system. In 1985, Parliament corrected the Indian Act. For her stance, she received the Order of Canada (1990) & Governor General’s Award (1992). In 2005, she was appointed to the Canadian Senate. Serving on Indigenous Peoples, Fisheries & Oceans, and Human Rights Committees, she caused Canada to launch a National Inquiry on Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women & Girls in 2016.
Sources: “Biography,” Senate of Canada. Retrieved 7/13/2020, https://sencanada.ca/en/senators/lovelace-nicholas-sandra-m/ Heather Conn, “Sandra Lovelace Nicholas,” The Canadian Encyclopedia, 1/10/2018. Retrieved 7/13/2020, https://thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/sandra-lovelace-nicholas Wikipedia Photo: Government of Canada (Parliament), 2005. Permissive Use. Source: https://sencanada.ca/en/senators/lovelace-nicholas-sandra-m/