April 26, 1901

CON

William Humphrey Bennett

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BENNETT.

In that case it is to my own knowledge that a number of large grist mills will not be enumerated by reason of the fact that very few grist mills employ five men. You can rarely go into a grist mill that is producing 100 to 150 barrels of flour per day, that has five men employed in it. I know what I am speaking about, because I was interested in a mill of about 100 barrels capacity, and we rarely had four men employed about that mill. In flour mills, run by water power, the number employed for a mill of that capacity is even less. If the enumerators carry out that instruction to the letter he will have very few grist mills enumerated.

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

I noticed the same thing in our locality, because the enumerator who went round said that he could not count an establishment as a factory unless it employed five men. I spoke to an enumerator and he told me that no flour mill employing less than five men could be counted, neither could their products be entered in the schedule. His information given to me was exactly the same as that which the hon. member for West York has reported to the committee. It did seem to me that it was a very improper way to take the census. As to whether the enumerators could correctly take the number of people in a single day, I understood the hon. minister to say that in order to avoid the danger that occurred in previous censuses where enumerators were very few, a larger number of enumerators had been employed on the present occasion so that they might do

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LIB

Sydney Arthur Fisher (Minister of Agriculture)

Liberal

Mr. FISHER.

the work in a very few days. But even with his present number it is a question whether we are going to get a correct enumeration of the people. For instance, in my own case, no census has been taken so far as I know, where I am stopping, but I know that on the 1st of April there was a census taken where I did not stop. Now, I do not know whether I was taken in the place where I did stop, or whether 1 shall be counted in the place where I do stop. In view of this fact, I have a doubt whether the census will be by any means correct. I do not know that it can be overcome in any way that I can suggest except by appointing a much larger number of enumerators; In regard to the enumerators and their instructions, I think there was very great delay, some how or other, in giving these instructions and supplying them with their books and papers, because my information is that a great many of them did not get their instructions until very late and that some of them did not get theirs until after the first of April. It may be that they got them later on, but, they were expected to do their work in a very short time, and I would expect that until an enumerator got his instructions he would not be enabled to commence work. Another feature of it which is particularly striking to me is that if you have a very large number of mills and other establishments turning out an annual product of a considerable, volume and if no record of them can be found in the census, then, the census are falling very far short of what we expect of them when they are taken, which is that they shall give us some data of the great industrial institutions of the country and of the output of the people engaged in these industries.

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CON

George Taylor (Chief Opposition Whip; Whip of the Conservative Party (1867-1942))

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. TAYLOR.

Before the hon. Minister of Agriculture replies to the hon. member for East Grey (Mr. Sproule), I just want to say a word. The hon. member for East Simcoe (Mr. Bennett) referred to flour mills, many of which employ less than five hands. I presume, in his neighbourhood, the saw-mill is a large institution, but, in the rural municipalities there are a great many saw-mills, and in my own county we have at least seven or eight of such mills. There is one at Lyndhurst run by John Roddick & Son where they employ one man. Jas. Roddick & Son have another mill in which they employ two hands. There is also one at Merton run by Mr. Coon and his son doing custom work and manufacturing lumber as well as flour. Then, we have several other saw-mills in my county making elm lumber which they saw into material for making cheese boxes and employing two or three men each. Are all these institutions not to be enumerated as manufacturing industries by the rule adopted by the hon. Minister of Agriculture. If so the manufacturing industries of the

country will be lost sight of entirely. 1 presume that in every county in the province of Ontario there are from half a dozen to a dozen saw-mills simply doing custom work for their neighbours. They are operated by water power and steam, and a great many of them employ less than five hands. As I have said there are seven or eight of them in my own county all employing under five hands. Are these not to be enumerated ? I have no doubt that the hon. minister is anxious to draw a comparison which will be creditable to his department. He professedly takes a great deal of interest in the Department of Agriculture, and one of the industries that he intends to bring out with great force is the construction and operation of silos which have grown up in this country since he became Minister of Agriculture. He has set apart a column for the number of silos and the capacity per cubic feet. This is not shown in the last census, and 1 presume that when the hon. minister comes to make his report he hopes to be able to say that in 1S91 we had no silos in this country and that now, under his administration, we have a large number. In connection with the instructions that the hon. gentleman has given to the census enumerators, I wish to refer to a letter which a gentleman has writetn to me. The information contained in his letter has reference to what has occurred right here in the city of Ottawa, and so, I presume, the hon. minister himself, is responsible. He must certainly have given instructions to the enumerators in Otawa. The writer of this letter says, that in Wellington Ward, Ottawa, an enumerator has put down thirty-six household conveniences, known as W. C.'s, as silos. From the information that comes here from Wellington Ward it appears that one of his enumerators has discovered thirty-six silos in the city of Ottawa. When the census returns come to be worked out the hon. minister will say : See, under my administration the number of silos that have been established in this country for the purpose of advancing the interests of agriculture.

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The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE.

My hon. friend (Mr. Taylor) is certainly very amusing and I am glad the House has laughed at it, but, unfortunately, he is just a little astray in his facts.

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CON

George Taylor (Chief Opposition Whip; Whip of the Conservative Party (1867-1942))

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. TAYLOR.

The facts are contained in thei statement to which I have referred, and I will give the hon. gentleman the statement.

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The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE.

In the first place, the hon. gentleman spoke about silos and he drew a vivid picture of the great interest I take in agriculture for which I thank the hon. gentleman. He has not overdrawn the picture in the slightest degree, but he apparently was not aware of the fact that in the census of 1891, five 1224

or six years before I became Minister of Agriculture, there was the same question in regard to silos that there is in the census being taken in 1901, and it was put in by the hon. gentleman's friend, the Minister of Agriculture, whom he supported. The hon. gentleman is only a little inaccurate in stating what is absolutely contrary to the facts. *

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CON

George Taylor (Chief Opposition Whip; Whip of the Conservative Party (1867-1942))

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. TAYLOR.

Then, the hon. Minister of Agriculture wants to show a large increase in the number of them.

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The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE.

I believe I shall be able to do so. If the hon. gentleman knew as much about agriculture as many other hon. members of the House do, he would know perfectly well that the use of silos has very largely increased since 1891, that before 1891 the use of slios was well known and well established and that in the returns from the census of 1891, procured by the hon. gentleman's friends and the government which he supported, that question, put in by the hon. gentleman's Minister of Agriculture, showed that there was a large number of silos in 1891, utilized, enumerated, counted and published in the returns of the census. The hon. gentleman's facts, unfortunately, will not quite square with his argument or his facetiousness. As regards silos in the city of Ottawa the hon. gentleman may find an enumerator who has done what he has stated ; I do not know but it is very extraordinary because the schedule of agricultural questions is not given to enumerators in cities. They do not make use of that, they do not ask these questions, and if an enumerator did choose to do so all 1 can say is that he has exceeded his duties, that he had no reason to do so and the question will be inquired into to see if the facts are as the hon. gentleman has stated them. In regard to the case mentioned by the hon. member for East Grey (Mr. Sproule), the hon. gentleman is aware that under the de jure census there is always difficulty where a person is absent from his home as to where he shall be counted. He should be counted at the place of his usual residence and these are the instructions given to the enumerators. The hon. gentleman should have been counted at his home in Grey. He should not have been counted here unless as a temporary visitor at the place where he is staying in Ottawa. There is provision for temporary visitors being put down. If they are put down, the place from which they come from is asked for, then, that is compared with the schedule for the place from which they come and the return is corrected. That will be worked out in the tabulation of the results of the census here and it is done for the purpose of, as much as possible, checking the double entry of people or the failure to enter them at all. I think, in practice, this will work out so as

to give a fair and accurate count, but, in any de jure census, there must necessarily be this difficulty.

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

I can understand that it may be correct in a measure if done in that way, but, unless there was something done to correct the return it would be very inaccurate. I saw in the press that the instructions were to count every one in the house in which he slept on the night of the first of April.

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The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE.

That is the de facto system, not the de jure system.

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

I know that where youths were attending school, they were taken in the census where they were boarding, and taken at their homes again.

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The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE.

They should have been taken where they were boarding as being temporarily there, and the place where their home was ought to be given. That was not done in the former census, and, therefore, we intend to eliminate that possibility of error.

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

It may be that was done. Is there no arrangement in the census by which we get information regarding establishments that employ less than five hands ?

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The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE.

The work done by each individual is put in the information about him. If the man runs a saw-mill he will be put down as a sawyer or mill-owner, and the description of his property will be put down. As an industrial establishment it will not.

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

A large percentage of the grist-mills and saw-mills and carriage shops employ three or four men, and they will not be recorded. The census will not show by any means the industrial pursuits of the country or the output of the people.

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CON

James Clancy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CLANCY.

The arbitrary rule, that no industrial establishment employing less than five persons shall be recorded, is open to very grave objection. The hon. gentleman stated his reason was because the provincial legislatures, when they were legislating to protect the lives of the employees, fixed an industrial establishment as employing over five hands, but, the definition in that case is founded on entirely different reasons from those which should prevail in taking a census. Many establishments employing less than five hands contribute very largely to the general bulk of the manufactured products of Canada, and by reason of improved machinery the tendency is to employ a less number of hands each year. The rule proposed by the hon. gentleman in this respect is a very bad one. I am afraid that the minister is not quite unprejudiced in this matter. He will remember that there was an earnest endeavour on the part of the Liberals to discredit the census of 1891. It Mr. FISHER.

is quite possible that there were many grave errors in that census, but, I have no doubt the minister will find that there will be grave errors in this census also, and that establishments will be put down on paper that are not fairly representative, as intended by the census. What the minister and his friends did in 1891 was to select particular cas s and attempt to found on them an argument against the whole system. I am afraid the minister had that in his mind when he laid down this arbitrary rule, which will exclude many industries of the country which are of great importance. Let me ask if any discretionary powers have been given to the enumerators in this respect ?

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The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE.

The instructions given to the enumerators are, that where there are not five employees, the establishment shall not be entered as an industrial or manufacturing concern, except in the case of cheese or butter factories, very few of which have that number of employees. Take the case of a small wagon factory, where two or three men are employed, and it is well known that whereas the men put the wheels and running gear together, they are not, in the proper sense of the term, factories for the actual production of these vehicles. It is the same with blacksmith shops, shoemakers, seamstresses, dressmakers, &c. In the census of 1891, these were counted as industrial establishments, and I venture to say that every one who understood the discussion at that time, appreciated that it was far too wide an interpretation of the term ' industrial establishment,' and that it made the whole census returns in that respect simply ridiculous. I tried to adopt a rule which would prevent the recurrence of that in this census, and in searching for a standard, I adopted the standard in the provincial factory Act, which, taken into consideration with other matters, I thought was a fair one to adopt.

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CON

James Clancy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CLANCY.

In view of the statement made by the minister, the country will seriously question his sincerity. He has declared that cheese and butter factories, which have less than five employees are to be counted as industrial establishments, while other factories are excluded, and in doing that it is quite clear that the minister wants to give himself a cheap advertisement. The hon. gentleman laughs, but his course is too patent for any one to be deceived by it. Why should he include a butter factory, and not include a grist-mill which probably may turn out five times as much in money's worth during the year ? I see no reason why there should be a distinction drawn. I never knew a more unblushing thing than that a minister should single out a branch of his own department for favoured treatment in the census, simply to boom himself and for political effect. It is unworthy of the minister to take such a course.

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

Let me give a few instances which came under my own personal knowledge in my locality of the industrial establishments that will be excluded under this system. In one village there are two wagon and carriage factories. The minister says these do not turn out much new work, but. it is to my knowledge that while they do not turn out as much new work as they did ten or fifteen years ago, yet they do continue to turn out new work, to a considerable extent. There are also five flour mills in the neighbourhood, not one of which will be taken in the census. There are some woollen mills, none of w'hich will be taken. There are eight sash and door factories, not one of which will be taken. There are veneering factories and saw-mills. These are only a few, which I speak of from memory and absolute knowledge, and I am quite sure that I could add others with a little thought. * This being the case in one locality, does it not suggest how imperfect the census will be in regard to the industrial pursuits of the people, and their output in various lines ?

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April 26, 1901