Julie Miville-Dechêne

Senator Julie Miville-Dechêne

Biography

Since her appointment to the Senate in June 2018, Senator Miville-Dechêne has introduced Bill S-211 on modern slavery, a bill that requires more transparency from businesses on the use of forced labor in their chain of supply. She was vice-chair of the Standing Senate Committee on Transport and Communications. She also spoke on several societal issues, such as the journalism crisis, pornography, prostitution, Senate reform and the related ethical issues.

Before being appointed to the Senate, Julie Miville-Dechêne had a long career in the public service sector where her talent as a skilled communicator shone through.

Very early on, she devoted herself to journalism, a career that would take her across Quebec, Canada, and the United States for more than 25 years, and through which she would meet people from every culture and background. Julie Miville-Dechêne was a correspondent for CBC-Radio-Canada television in Montreal, Toronto, Ottawa and Washington. She covered the constitutional talks, the Oklahoma City bombing, and the US intervention in Haiti to name a few.

In 2007, she became the first woman ombudsman of Radio-Canada, an experience that helped her gain solid expertise in ethics. These public decisions took a good hard look at the mechanics of journalism and exposed mistakes or bias.

In 2011, Julie Miville-Dechêne was named Chair of the Quebec government’s Conseil du statut de la femme. For five years, she modernized the institution by making it relevant for young women. She also used her independence to raise the profile of the institution and to speak publicly on the major issues affecting women, including sexual violence, and by taking part in field research. Under her leadership, the Conseil published noteworthy papers on prostitution, honour-based violence, and surrogate mothers. She expressed serious concerns about the government’s secularism charter in 2013.

In 2016, she made the jump to diplomacy, successively serving as the Quebec representative as part of the Permanent Delegation of Canada to UNESCO, then as the Quebec government envoy for human rights and freedoms.

In 2008, she was the recipient of the Reconnaissance UQAM Award for her exceptional contribution to the development of her profession. In 2005, she received the Raymond-Charette Award for exceptional quality of French in broadcast journalism. In 2002, she won the New York Festivals International Advertising Award for her report on children and terrorism, Les enfants et le terrorisme.  

Ms. Miville-Dechêne holds a graduate degree in conflict prevention and resolution from the Université de Sherbrooke, a Master’s Degree in journalism from Columbia University in New York, and a Bachelor’s Degree in political science from the Université du Québec à Montréal.

Senator Miville-Dechêne is a founding member of the Canadian Association of Feminist Parliamentarians (CAFP) and Co-Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group to End Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking. She also serves on the Executive Committee of the Canadian Section of ParlAmericas (CPAM) and is a member of the Canada-United States Inter-Parliamentary Group (CEUS), the Canada-France Inter-Parliamentary Association (CAFR) and the Canadian Group of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (UIPU).

In addition to her senatorial duties, Senator Miville-Dechêne is a volunteer administrator at two non-profits organizations (NPO): Share the Warmth and Informed Opinions.

Senate Business