Shen Jilan, China’s longest-serving national lawmaker and recipient of the Medal of the Republic, passed away Sunday morning.
Provincial publicity department said the 91-year old Shen died in the city of Changzhi, north China’s Shanxi Province.
Born in 1929, Shen hailed from a remote village in the mountains of Taihang, a revolutionary base of the Communist Party of China in Shanxi.
She served for all 13 terms of the National People’s Congress, China’s top legislature, since its establishment in 1954.
Shen actively safeguarded women’s labor rights and advocated legitimizing “equal pay for equal work” between men and women.
That was written into the first Constitution of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) in 1954 as she had proposed.
She was awarded the Medal of the Republic, the highest state honour, last September ahead of the 70th founding anniversary of the PRC for her significant contributions to the country.