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The right woman for the job: Quebec women’s federation chooses first trans leader

New President of the Federation des femmes du Quebec (FFQ) Gabrielle Bouchard is seen in her office, Tuesday, December 5, 2017 in Montreal. Bouchard is the first trans woman to lead Quebec's main woman's rights organization.
New President of the Federation des femmes du Quebec (FFQ) Gabrielle Bouchard is seen in her office, Tuesday, December 5, 2017 in Montreal. Bouchard is the first trans woman to lead Quebec's main woman's rights organization. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz

Gabrielle Bouchard is brushing aside criticism she is unfit to lead Quebec’s main women’s federation as its first trans president.

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The women’s rights activist tells The Canadian Press her vision as president is to fight for equality for all women and among all women.

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Since her recent election, Bouchard has faced harsh criticism in Quebec newspapers and online from people who say she is incapable of truly understanding the female experience because she was born male.

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Bouchard says her detractors assume all women live the same experiences and notes it’s impossible for any president to understand the struggles of all females, regardless of the gender they were assigned at birth.

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She says her definition of feminism is about not leaving anyone behind.

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The federation of Quebec women represents roughly 300 feminist organizations across the province as well as about 700 individual members.