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Muriel McQueen Fergusson Centre

About the MMFC



The MMFC is a member of the Alliance of Canadian Research Centres on Gender-Based Violence, which includes the following research centres:


The creation of the MMFC began in 1985 with the establishment of the Fergusson Foundation, a charitable organization.

Members of the foundation worked to raised funds towards protective services for survivors of family violence. This made clear the need for a preventative approach to family violence.

The idea for a research centre dedicated to collaborative action-oriented research of family violence and violence against women and children emerged out of this necessity.

The MMFC was established within the Faculty of Arts in 1993, as a collaboration of efforts between the University of New Brunswick and the Muriel McQueen Fergusson Foundation.

About Muriel McQueen Fergusson

The Honourable Muriel McQueen Fergusson, P.C., O.C., Q.C. spent her life setting the standard for New Brunswick women and women everywhere.

Born in 1899 in Shediac, New Brunswick, she became a lawyer long before women were accepted in the profession. When her husband became too ill to continue his law practice, Muriel took up the counselling of his clients.

Her advice was so sound that some of the clients believed Muriel was simply passing on the information provided by her husband. A tireless activist for the rights of women and the poor, Muriel made history when she became the first woman Senator from the Atlantic region and the first female Speaker of the Senate.

MMFC Milestone: Celebrating 30 Years

Defining family violence

“Family” refers to a group of individuals who are related by affection, kinship and/or dependency and/or trust. “Family violence” is defined to encompass the abuse of children, youths, elderly persons, disabled persons or a partner in a family grouping defined above. It can take the form of intimidation, deprivation and/or financial exploitation as well as emotional, spiritual and sexual abuse and physical assault.