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MEMORIAM: Chapter activist Betty McWhinnie passes away

Activist Betty McWhinnie passed away yesterday morning at her daughter’s home in Ottawa.

Our 2006 annual report states that, “Council members took the message (that water and sanitation are human rights) to heart in Whistler, B.C., when they got wind of the impending privatization of the city’s wastewater system in January. Activists Pina Belperio and Betty McWhinnie swiftly formed a new Council of Canadians chapter, and worked with others to organize the Whistler Water Watch Coalition. After collecting almost 2,000 signatures opposing the privatization scheme, Whistler activists convinced city council to scuttle the deal and keep the plant in public hands.”

In the Spring 2007 issue of Canadian Perspectives we congratulated Betty – at age 83 – for being named Whistler Citizen of the Year. At that time Pique Newsmagazine reported that, “A mother of five and ESL and commercial studies teacher at Toronto’s George Brown College for 24 years, McWhinnie also taught in Shanghai in 1983-84. …A long-time dedication to the Whistler library board, emergency and community social services societies, Whistler Welcome Week, Elizabeth Manso society, and the Mature Action Committee are just some of the organizations in which McWhinnie has been involved.”

Our condolences to her family and friends.

To read ‘McWhinnie remembered as inspirational Whistlerite’ in the Whistler Question, go to http://www.whistlerquestion.com/article/20100901/WHISTLER01/309019975/1030/WHISTLER/mcwhinnie-remembered-as-inspirational-whistlerite.