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Memorable Manitobans: Joseph Paul “Joe” Borowski (1932-1996)

Miner, MLA (1969), MLA (1969-1971), anti-abortion crusader.

Born at Wishart, Saskatchewan on 12 December 1932, he worked as a cook in mines and owned a Saskatoon restaurant. He became a miner at Thompson, then opened a souvenir shop where in 1965 he refused to collect provincial sales tax. He was elected NDP MLA for Churchill at a 1969 by-election, replacing Gordon Beard, and was re-elected at the 1969 general election. He held ministerial portfolios of Transportation (1969-1971) and Public Works (1970-1971) in the Schreyer government. He resigned in 1971 over the abortion issue and became the most prominent pro-lifer in Canada. He went on a hunger strike and carried on a long constitutional battle with the Canadian Supreme Court, which he lost in 1989. He stood as an Independent in the 1973 provincial general election but came in a distant second place. He died at Winnipeg on 23 September 1996 and was buried at Wynyard, Saskatchewan.

See also:

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Joseph P. Borowski Memorial (1629 Pembina Highway, Winnipeg)

Sources:

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 24 September 1996, page 28.

Members of the Legislative Assembly (deceased), Legislative Assembly of Manitoba.

Dictionary of Manitoba Biography by John M. “Jack” Bumsted, Winnipeg: University of Manitoba Press, 1999.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 9 May 2020

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

This is a collection of noteworthy Manitobans from the past, compiled by the Manitoba Historical Society.

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