March 15, 1926

CON
LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

Some hon. gentle-; men seem to think that we -must act in a haphazard way that defies all theory. To me, however, it seems that good practice must be founded on sound theory. No one will doubt that if we find markets for Canadian made goods we must receive goods in return.

The further question then confronts us as to how we shall determine what a basic wage really is, and w-hat efforts have been made in other countries along this line. I have in my hand a copy of the United States Department of Labour Statistics containing a "tentative quantity and cost budget necessary to maintain a family of five." There is a very interesting study made here by experts as to how this ought to be made up, and I should like to read just a few paragraphs as they may indicate the line along which the experts are working. I quote as follows:

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LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

When the House

took recess I was giving some of the budgets which had been prepared to shew the amount necessary in order that a family might maintain a decent standard of living. Perhaps it might ibe of interest to give the figures with regard to what employees in this country are actually paid. In the 'Canada Year Book, 1924, at page 707, we find the wages in the Canadian manufacturing industries in

1921 and 1922 were:

The average earnings of the 74,884 salaried employees covered in 1922 were 1,787 of the 387,689 factory hands, 937, and of the two classes together, $1,075. In 1921 salaried employees averaged $1,819, wage earners, $996, and all employees, $1,133.

The number of male workers reported increased in

1922 by 3.5 per cent, while the number of female workers was greater by 11.1 per cent. Out of every 1,000 persons employed by manufacturers in 1922, 755 were male and 235 were females: in the preceding year the ratio was 778 to 222.

With regard to the female employees, at least in seven of our provinces there is provision for a minimum wage, but so far, except in British Columbia, there is no provision for minimum wage in the case of male employees. Now, it may be said that there is a very widte discrepancy between the amounts that are considered necessary for a decent standard df living and the amounts actually paid. That is true, and the community is undoubtedly carrying the burden. People of small wage manage to get along-some of them at least-by immense sacrifices to themselves and to their children, entailing a tremendous burden upon the community. I am going to read t-o the House a paragraph or two very typical of the descriptions which are given of the condition of the poorer families of Canada round about Christmas time; we find similar cases in almost all our large cities. The one to which I refer is

Legal Minimum Wage

taken from the Toronto Daily Star of Monday, December 14, 1925. It reads

Largest Weekly Wage $24 Since Man Started To Work

"If I could make $20 a week regularly I would be happy."

A sick and doleful man, tossing restlessly underneath soiled bed clothes. His feverish eyes turned in the direction of his wife, who was standing silently in the far corner of the damp and dim little room. She gravely nodded her corroboration.

"kes," she said, "we could do nicely on that."

It didn't seem much to ask of the world-$20 per week for a man slaving in a tannery.

"I once earned $24 a week for awhile," reflected the sick man, as if that time were the financial oasis of his life, when it was all smooth sailing.

Five To Support

But with five people to support, rent to pay, doctor's bills to meet, food to buy it could hardly be called a princely allowance. '

This is another of those families that have never got out of the mire. There are three little girls in the family, all, from outward appearances, in various stages of anemia. There was also a little brother, but he died.

It is not to be wondered at if they do look like children whose parents have been skating on thin ice. The $24-a-week days are a thing of the past, and now the father's total earnings for a week cannot be more than $18, and generally he loses two, or perhaps more, days a week. If lie loses two his wages are $12. His rent is $5. Divide the balance by five and you get $1.40. With Jive people getting no more than that each week somebody has to go without.

Behind In Hent

Sometimes they get three months behind in the rent, and then it takes them a great deal longer to recover. Invariably they are in debt with the doctor, paying him off sometimes at the rate of 50 cents a week.

This as a typical situation for one of the families on the list of The Star Santa Claus Fund. It is not an isolated case; quite the contrary. There are thousands like it.

The record in any city of any size would show thousands of cases very similar in character to this. That is what it means to the family living on low wages. Just think what a great burden this entails on the community at large. I believe that any medical man will bear me out-and there are a very large number of medical men in. this House -that to no small extent the patients in our hospitals coming from the poorer homes in our cities are there because of the lack of proper care at home. Those who have had anything to do with poor relief in our cities know what large sums are given by the various institutions and societies and by the churches toward the support of the people who are obliged to live below the line. I know of one society in my own city which has had to consider seriously. the question whether or not it was right to supplement by charity the wages paid to the working people there-wages that are altogether inadequate

to support them in anything like a decent standard. We have also the same testimony from our prisons and penitentiaries. A considerable number of the inmates of these institutions were tempted to crime simply because they had to keep themselves on less than would maintain a decent standard of living.

I remember some years ago trying a little experiment of my own. I requested the health officers to give me a spot map showing the location of the contagious diseases in my city over a number of months. I then went to the associated charities and asked them to prepare me a similar map showing where their cases requiring relief were located, and I asked the juvenile court for a spot map indicating in what districts cases of juvenile crime were prevalent. I placed these maps side by side and I found that they were almost identical in detail. I do not know which is the most fundamental-the want of health, or poverty, or juvenile crime, but I would say that the three were closely connected. And the worst is not the effect on the individual or even on the individual family but the effect on the younger children and the coming generation. If we give less than a decent standard of living we simply mortgage the future generation.

Objections to anything like a minimum wage come from two sources. There is sometimes objection on the part of labour itself. It is feared by some labour leaders that the minimum wage might tend to become the maximum, and that, I think, might be a real danger if we proposed to fix a minimum wage in every industry. But I am not talking of a minimum for each industry; all I advocate is a basic wage that would apply to all men, a wage below which it is not safe to allow any family to live. There is also an objection from industry; we are told that industry cannot bear the burden. Well, I suggest that so long as we have such accumulation of wealth as we have in this country we need not worry a great deal about this matter. So long as there are a few people who possess large fortunes while the masses in Canada have comparatively little there is no reason why these masses ought not to have their standards raised. You have but to glance at the income tax returns to realize the very unequal distribution of wealth in Canada, and so long as industries are earning large dividends, so long as our financial institutions are prosperous, there is no reason whatever why individual workmen should subsist on low standards.

Legal Minimum Wage

In my opinion any industry that cannot pay its employees a decent wage is parasitic, and that industry might just as well pass out. Surely if an industry is worth carrying on it ought to afford a decent living to the people who are engaged in it. As I said a little while ago, we ought to regard wages as a first charge on industry. As it is to-day, we consider interest as a prior charge; rents are regarded as a prior charge and we have profits in various forms as a prior charge as well. We must reverse this way of thinking, and recognize that wages, which mean the very life of the employee, ought to constitute a first charge on industry. As a matter of fact wre do not treat our employees on as good a principle as we do the lower animals, for we have on the statute books laws for the prevention of cruelty to animals. A man is not allowed to work a horse and not give it proper food; he is not even allowed to keep a wild animal in confinement without adequately caring for it. Yet we have many people in this country who are working for anything but an adequate wage, a wage which would enable them to provide even the barest necessities of life. We ought surely at least to go as far as that.

It is said that dreadful things may happen if this or any other reform, for that matter, is carried out, but I would point out that no dire results have attended the minimum wage for women. It may be that certain employers have been unable to engage the girls they would have liked to employ, and it may be that the costs of production have been somewhat increased and, of course, passed on to the public. But we are coming to recognize that on the whole no serious results have ensued from the enactment of minimum wage laws for women. Why therefore should there be any danger in enacting a similar law for men who have families to support? I am again speaking of a basic wage; I am thinking of those classes of men who generally have been unable to organize themselves into trade unions and who therefore are the most helpless in our community life.

Perhaps I might pause for a moment to answer a little more fully a suggestion that has been made, that in the event of a minimum wage law being carried into effect there might be a danger of there not being enough work available for those seeking employment. I would call the attention of the House to a very interesting treatment of the Economics of Unemployment by Mr. J. A. Hobson, the well known British economist. In this book issued about a year or so ago he takes the

point of view that on the whole the present organization of industry has really allowed for an altogether undue proportion of savings, which have been put into fixed capital-that is to say, into factories, railways and so on, and that whilst undoubtedly this great piling up of capital that has gone on in the past has conduced to build up our present civilization, the time is about come when this is in danger of becoming top-heavy, and when, if we wish to save this system, we shall have to alter it very materially.

His line of reasoning is something like this. Supposing we have a factoiy turning out $100,000 worth of goods, and supposing $50,000 worth of that output is paid in the form of wages or for raw materials-I am not giving exact proportions; this is simply to illustrate -the owner of the factory is able to retain for himself $50,000. He does not spend that foolishly on himself, as a good many who are opposed to the system imagine he does; he puts the greater part of it back into the business. He does it because he follows tradition; he does it because his competitors are doing so; he does it because of the very necessity of his growing trade. Therefore he puts a good portion of his profits back into his business, and next year, we will say, with his enlarged factoiy he turns out $200,000 worth of goods. Now he is able to retain a half of that, $100,000, with which he builds new factories. This process continues until on all sides we have very large and extensive means of production. Ultimately he seeks investments abroad, and the same process is repeated there. One hundred or one hundred and fifty years ago this capitalist system, control of factories in the hands of the few, came into existence, and undoubtedly it has produced most remarkable results in the extension of factory and railway investments all over the world.

But the point is that now we have set up factories in China, in India and in other places, all organized on the same principle, all turning out huge quantities of goods for which markets have to be sought. Mr. Hobson has come to the conclusion-and without doubt he is one of the leading economists in Great Britain-that there is an altogether undue proportion of what is produced put into fixed capital. The workers have not sufficient purchasing power to buy back what they have produced. He suggests that if a larger proportion were put into commodities we would start industry going again. I am giving that theory for what it is worth. It is not altogether the theory that I should like to advance, it is not altogether the theory that is held by

Legal Minimum Wage

the group which I represent, but I give it because it comes from a man of undoubted authority in the economic world.

I think there is one particular in which he is correct-that the ownership of the means of production being in the hands of a few has, as Keynes clearly pointed out in his book, The Economic Consequences of the Peace, enabled capitalists to retain the greater part of the cake which they and the workers in the community have been producing. That has been going on for a good many years, and it has been satisfactory perhaps from the world's standpoint for some time, but we are fast coming to the point where those countries which formerly were the markets for our goods are now becoming our competitors in the manufacture of similar goods. In a word, we are being thrown back upon ourselves, and it is well worth our considering whether from the larger economic aspects we would not, as Hobson has suggested, gain by distributing a great deal more in the form of wages and services than we are doing at the present time.

However, I am not arguing from the larger economic aspects of the question. I am trying to look at the situation from the standpoint of the individual family and of the groups that to-day are living on too small a wage. I would ask that to-night this House should in some way provide means for the discussion of this question and for the carrying out of the avowed purposes of the clauses in the Versailles treaty. Perhaps I may be permitted to quote to the government from a document that I have been quoting to the House pretty regularly at intervals for the last four years. The National Liberal convention in August 1919 put itself on record with regard to labour and industry as follows:

Resolved that the committee recommends that the National Liberal convention accept in their entirety as a part of the Liberal platform in the spirit they have been framed and in so far as the special circumstances of the country will permit, the terms of the labour convention and general principles associated with the League of Nations and incorporated in the conditions of peace.

These methods and principles for regulating labour conditions so set forth in the treaty are as follows:

1. The guiding .principles that labour should not be regarded merety as a commodity or article of commerce.

3. The payment to the employed of a wage adequate to maintain a reasonable standard of life as this is understood in their time and country.

I think, Mr. Speaker, that in presenting this resolution and asking that the guarantees of the Peace treaty should be made statutory, I am simply asking that the programme of the Liberal party-now the government of this country-should be carried out.

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IND

Alan Webster Neill

Independent

Mr. A. W. NEILL (Comox-Alberni):

Mr. Speaker, I am glad by seconding this resolution to be associated with the subject matter of it. If I had any fault to find with it, I would say that it hardly went far enough. It is too academic in its character:

That, in the opinion of this House, a wage sufficient to provide for a reasonable standard of living should constitute a legal minimum wage.

I would have preferred something a little more mandatory, or a little more suggestive of action being taken by the government to carry out the purpose of the resolution. I do not think that any employer or any representative of an association of employers, however reactionary they or he may be, could have any objection to the passage of this resolution worded as it is.

I take exception somewhat to the remarks of the introducer of the resolution about there being some dubiety as to whether its subject matter comes under the jurisdiction of the Dominion or of the provinces, for I think that was thoroughly threshed out some four years ago. The question arose then more particularly in connection with the eight-hour law, and it was, I think, decided on the very best obtainable legal authority that it was entirely a matter for the provinces, coming under that section of the British North America Act which gives to the provinces exclusive jurisdiction in dealing with civil rights.

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LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

Mr. Speaker, might I ask the hon. gentleman if this is not a somewhat different proposal?

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IND

Alan Webster Neill

Independent

Mr. NEILL:

I think the reference then

made covered this branch too, although I would not be dogmatic about it. Now, in British Columbia we are particularly sympathetic with this resolution for three reasons: first, on general principles; second, because we have already taken steps in this direction; and third, because we hope that this may be a solution, or at any rate a partial solution, of Asiatic competition.

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?

An hon. MEMBER:

Oh, oh.

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IND

Alan Webster Neill

Independent

Mr. NEILL:

My hon. friend laughs because he thinks I could not go very far without bringing in the Asiatics. But perhaps he will allow me to say it is a much more important question in British Columbia than it is in his province. While we hope we may be able to deal with the question of further Asiatic immigration by imposing effective restrictions, the economic competition of those who are already here can, we think, be most suitably met by some legislation along the lines of a minimum wage bill, because if a minimum wage is imposed, the desire to

Legal Minimum Wage

Topic:   LEGAL MINIMUM WAGE
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LIB

Peter Heenan

Liberal

Mr. PETER HEENAN (Kenora-Rainy River):

In rising to say a few words in

support of this resolution, I observe that it calls for a wage sufficient to provide for a reasonable standard of living to be adopted as the legal minimum wage. That seems to me to be getting into the field of provincial rights. It would be difficult, I am sure, to find either in any of the provincial Houses or in this House any man who would say that a fair and reasonable wage should not prevail, and it is not difficult to get resolutions along that line passed1, but very little in the way of results follows from the passing of these resolutions unless they are backed up by legislation, such as we have in Ontario, and a minimum wage board is appointed. Like my good friend from Winnipeg North Centre (Mr. Woodsworth), I moved a resolution on the floor of the Ontario legislature in 1924, which read as follows:

Resolved that it is the opinion of this House a clause shall be inserted in all contracts made by the government for the sale of timber or puLpwood, or for the development of water-powers, providing that the wages to be paid by the concessionaire shall be not less than the wages as are generally accepted as current in each trade for competent workmen in the district where the work is carried out. And when renewals or transfers are made or where the terms embodied in contracts now in existence are not fulfilled, the government shall avail ilself of the opportunity to insert such a clause.

To that resolution an amendment was moved by the premier of the province, adding the words:

-in so far as due regard to vested rights and justice may permit.

As we had no desire to do anything to hurt vested rights or justice, we let the resolution go through with that amendment, but notwithstanding that the resolution was carried

Legal Minimum Wage

by the Ontario legislature and thereby became an order of the House, although there have been some timber contracts and water power leases made since then, I am informed that this clause has not been included in any of them, I mention that just as an illustration of how resolutions of this kind passing the House promiscuously will accomplish little unless they are backed up by legislation, except, of course, that they do serve to express the opinion of the House. .

I shall not take up the time of the House further, because I think my hon. friend from Winnipeg North Centre has covered the ground very fully. In order to get somewhere -because there is a question here of disputed jurisdiction and authority-I think ithe government should accept the suggestion made by my hon. friend and refer this matter to the committee on Industrial Relations. I realize, of course, it is difficult to refer a matter to a committee which is not yet in existence, but probably the leader of the government can find some way of deferring the discussion or adjourning the debate until after the committee has been constituted, and then this question could be referred to that committee.

Hon. J H. ICING (East Kootenay): I do not think any of us will take exception to the wording of the resolution proposed by my hon. friend from Winnipeg North Centre (Mr. Woodsworth):

That in the opinion of this House a wage sufficient to provide for a reasonable standard of living should constitute a legal minimum wage.

As my hon. friend has outlined to-day to the House, during the negotiations preceding the Versailles treaty, when the representatives of the different nations assembled in solemn conference were trying to arrive at resolutions or formulae that would improve conditions in the - world, much time was given in trying to realize the desire and hope that out of that great conflict there would come better conditions for Labour. That conference did express the firm desire that in the different countries concerned this principle should prevail:

The payment to the employed of a wage adequate to maintain a reasonable standard of life as this is understood in their time and country.

That is from article 427 of the treaty. My hon. friend to-day has kept his wording pretty much within the limits of the principle there laid down. It is true that in the Dominion of Canada this question is not a new one. In seven of the provinces we have the principle accepted and a minimum wage law applied to certain classes of female workers. Among those provinces we find both the older and the [Mr. Heenan.l

new provinces-Nova Scotia, Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba, Alberta and British Columbia. British Columbia has gone probably a little further than the other provinces, for not only have we a minimum wage for certain classes of female workers, but we have also gone into the field of male workers, particularly in the lumber industry.

But the question is, how shall we arrive at our object, and what are our powers? A reference was made to our courts and in June last a decision was given which set out the powers relative to hours of labour in industrial employment. The judgment set out that the legislative authority on this subject belonged to the provinces, that if the power to legislate for an eight-hour day is vested in the provinces, presumably the latter are wage matters. That having been decided by our courts and the provinces having already moved in the matter, and having set up minimum wage boards dealing with certain classes of labour, the field is cleared to some extent. It is, I think, conceded on all sides that this is a provincial problem. Personally I do not think there would be any harm-in fact much good might come from the suggestion of the mover of the resolution in this respect-in an adjournment of the debate, and later, when the committees are formed, a reference of the resolution to the committee on Industrial and International Relations. It is a subject that would stand inquiry and investigation by a committee of this House, although this parliament would not necessarily be committed to legislation along those lines. Our committees are not yet constituted, but they will be within a few hours, and I would suggest that that course be followed. I now move the adjournment of the debate.

Motion agreed to and debate adjourned.

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FUEL SUPPLY

MOTION FOR COMMITTEE OF INVESTIGATION

CON

Joseph Elijah Armstrong

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. J. E. ARMSTRONG (East Lambton) moved:

'

That in the opinion of this House, attention be given to the development of the coal resources of Canada, and the delivery of this product at the lowest cost, in order to meet the urgent need for this fuel for manufacturing and domestic uses: and

That a committee composed of members of this House be appointed to investigate our present sources of supply of anthracite and bituminous coal. The dependability of such sources, and whether the prices .paid by the Canadian consumer is fair and reasonable, and to also inquire as to the methods of mining and delivering Canadian coal in the best and cheapest way to all parts of the Dominion, for the purpose of giving employment to our workmen, freight to our transportation companies, and thus effecting a saving of money now spent for this commodity in other countries.

Fuel Supply

He said: Mr. Speaker, the resolution is one that deserves the consideration of every member of this House. There is no question as to the need of the development of our coal resources. Next to the United States, Canada has the largest coal reserves in the world. Their exploitation is in its infancy. The extremes of our east and west have large coal fields. Central Canada, the area where the need of coal is acutely felt, holds the key to the situation. This area, comprising all the province of Ontario and that part of the province of Quebec from the Ontario boundary east to Montreal, is the centre of the Canadian manufacturing and population density. Its main source of fuel for a long time has been the coal fields of the United States, which are nearer to it by rail and water routes than the coal fields of western Canada, or those of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia in the east. We have only to look for a few minutes at the facts contained in the Statistical Year Book to convince us that the coal mines of Canada contain an unlimited supply of fuel suitable for our needs, and that the only problems to be solved are those of transportation and the regulations governing the mining and handling of this product, including its proper standardization and analysation. The Canada Year Book at page 26 contains the following statement:

Canada's coal resources are only now being exploited to any considerable extent, the estimated total reserves available amounting to one trillion, two hundred and thirty-four billions, two-hundred and sixty-nine million, three hundred and ten thousand metric tons, approximately one sixth of the world's reserve; over eighty-five per cent of the Canadian reserves are in Alberta. The total estimated reserves constitute one-quarter of the amount of coal available in North and South America.

Then again on page 62 this statement appears :

The anomaly of this situation is heightened if we consider that Canada's present coal consumption is about thirty-five million tons annually as against reserves of one trillion, two hundred and thirty-four billion two hundred and eighty nine million metric tons, sufficient for an unthinkably long period at the present rate of consumption. The coal production in 1923 amounted to 16,990,571 tons, valued at $72,058,986, or an average of $4.33 per ton. This represented an increase of 1,833,140 tons or 7.8 per cent in quantity as compared with the previous year. The production was obtained by mines in which were employed on the average of 30,300 men at a wage cost of approximately $42,321,990.

Referring to the production during 1923, Alberta held the first place among the coal-producing provinces with an output of 6,854,397 tons; Nova Scotia followed closely with 6,597,838 tons; the output of coal from the mines of British Columbia and the Yukon

Topic:   FUEL SUPPLY
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H011-100


amounted to 2,823,619 tons, while Saskatchewan mined 438,100 tons and New Brunswick 276,617 tons. During 1923, 22,687,320 tons of foreign coal were imported into Canada. Had four-fifths of this amount of coal been obtained from Canadian mines, over $100,000,000 would have been left in Canada. Thirty-five thousand men would have had employment at a cost of some $50,000,000, and our railways would have benefited by the additional traffic. Canada spends annually from $120,000,000 to $135,000,000 for coal produced outside her own territory. I am well aware that efforts have been made by former parliaments, both local and federal, to deal with the Dominion fuel situation. A committee composed of members of this House, was appointed in 1923, and a committee composed of members of the Senate was appointed in 1923 for the purpose of investigating this matter. Although they gathered a lot of information, no definite action has been taken. It might be well to place on record a few of the findings of these different committees, and in order that we may appreciate the fact that the only source of information we have through the Printing Bureau is found in the report of the two committees in question, which I intend to refer to, I will read the following letter from Mr. Acland, King's Printer:- I beg to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 11th instant and to enclose herewith a copy of the report of the special committee of the House of Commons on mines and minerals, dealing with the question of the Canadian fuel supply. Also a copy of a report of the report of the special committee of the Senate on the same question. These reports are dated 1923, and are the only ones in our possession dealing with the fuel question. Now if we will look at the report of the select standing committee on Mines and Minerals of the House of Commons, page 7, we find the following statement:- Your committee has heard much evidence from various parts of Canada on every phase of the questions sumitted to it in said resolution. One statement may be made without any hesitation, that is, that it is absolutely necessary that every step possible should and must be taken at once by Canada through its government, its transportation companies, its coal operators and manufacturers of other fuels, to make Canada independent of other countries for its fuel supply. The economic question alone should move all Canadians to put forth every exertion to attain this object. Canada cannot for long continue paying to foreign countries millions of dollars yearly for fuel and hope to maintain its economic independence. One has only to consider this for a short time to see where such a condition will ultimately land us. Yet another consideration along this line is the fact that the United States, our chief source of supply, could not last year give Canada the usual supply, and many cases of extreme hardship and suffering were brought to the attention of the committee through lack of domestic fuel. No fault, however, can be found with the United States Fuel Control Board for this short-



Fuel Sup-ply



age, as they treated Canada fairly, but a note of warning was sent out by the fuel board last winter, which should be taken to heart by Canadians. That was in effect that Canada could not hope in the future to get the usual supply of anthracite from the United States. Your committee is able to point out from the evidence adduced that Canada has ample resources of coal for all purposes for ages to come. The chief sources of supply are in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Alberta and British Columbia. One fact struck your committee very forcibly, that is, that a large percentage of the population of central Canada have strange delusions regarding Canadian coal; they think we have no suitable domestic coal. What is wanted in this connection is propaganda, an advertising throughout Canada of the true value of Canadian coal and in this connection your committee would like to point out that up until two years ago the fuel needs of Winnipeg were supplied to the extent of 85 per cent by United States anthracite. Through the continued efforts of the Alberta government and coal operators 90 per cent of the Winnipeg coal needs are now supplied from Alberta. The committee goes on to emphasize the fact that the time has come when the government should act in connection with this matter and take immediate steps to bring about a remedy for the situation complained of. The special committee of the Senate appointed to inquire into the matter of the fuel supply of Canada, in their final report make these statements: There is an abundance of evidence to the effect that the coal areas of Canada, east and west, are sufficient to supply the fuel needs of our entire population for an indefinite period of time. In other words thereis no shortage of coal in Canada, neither is there a lack of developed mines. A large percentage of the collieries now in operation-more particularly those in western Canada-are capable of increasing their output to a very considerable extent with little or no capital cost, and would undoubtedly do so if markets for their increased output were available. In the coal fields of the east, the situation is somewhat different. Many of the mines of that area would not be able to increase production to any material extent without the expenditure of very large sums of money on capital account. As regards Nova Scotia coal your committee are of the opinion that central Canada in the future may be able to secure a much larger share of its requirements of bituminous coal from that source provided navigation, storage, handling and shipping facilities west of Montreal are improved. Your committee is impressed with the necessity of having this phase of our fuel problem more thoroughly investigated and recommends that the Dominion Fuel Board should continue its investigations along this line. They continue to emphasize the fact that immediate action should be taken and make statements such as this: To a certain extent anthracite coal may be regarded as a luxury, and the sooner the public realize this fact, the less danger there will be of being haunted by the nightmare of a coal famine. During the recent emergency period considerable anthracite coal was imported from Wales and Scotland and is still being brought in. The Fuel Controller of Ontario gave evidence to the effect that this coal is of the highest quality and is worth at least $3 per ton more than the ordinary grades of United States anthracite. To the extent that this British coal is imported, our dependence on United States anthracite is lessened, and ocean tonnage for our exports is increased. This report merely emphasizes, as I said before, the fact that the government should take immediate action along the line of trying to solve this very important problem. The Dominion Fuel Board created by the Canadian Government has done much useful work, but their powers are limited. Premiers of provinces and fuel controllers in those provinces have made an earnest effort to solve the fuel question. Members of parliament, and senators have met with fuel controllers in the different provinces for this same purpose. I will not take up the time c>f this House reviewing the work already done, but the facts are that no definite action has been taken by any government and we are still dependent on our southern neighbours for our winter warmth and our industrial fuel. It is highly desirable that a policy should be adopted which will ensure Canada against dependence upon the present precarious source of her fuel supply. It is a matter that vitally affects every home in Canada and every industry in Canada, hence every member of parliament should be actively interested in it. It is not for any one group or party in this House to undertake to solve the problem, nor is it a question for provincial governments alone to deal with, although they can materially assist. The Dominion government cannot shift the responsibility to local governments; local governments could not control the situation and months and years would go by with nothing accomplished. We have just passed through a crisis in relation to the coal question which might very easily have become a calamity. The Dominion parliament must recognize the importance and seriousness of the Canadian coal situation and regard it from the standpoint of a national emergency. If parliament will form a committee composed of eleven members of this House, one from each province, two from Ontario and two from Quebec-these provinces, owing to their large population, being the most vitally interested-and will give that committee a wide scope in their investigation of the problems outlined in my resolution, I am firmly convinced that parliament could be supplied with important data regarding this problem. This committee should frame recommendations for a national fuel policy to be considered by the Canadian and provincial governments, with their experts on transportation and co-related activities, before any definite action be taken. Fuel Supply It would be the duty of this committee to consider the various phases of the fuel situation, as it affects producers and consumers. The rights of the consumer must be adequately safeguarded. No company should be able to palm off low quality fuel, or give stones to those who pay for coal. The most pressing need of tins industry to-day is transportation. The Dominion government will have to take responsibility in this matter. I am fully persuaded that with a proper policy of co-operation and the working out of a programme of transportation such as this committee would present to parliament, a solution of this problem could be reached. Failure to grant the request will mean years of delay. In order that a satisfactory settlement of this question may be brought about, co-operation between the local and Dominion governments must be attained, and the basis of all arrangements should be mutual confidence and mutual goodwill. I am fully persuaded that with a proper policy of co-operation between the local and Dominion governments and between the public and the industry, this problem can be solved with mutual advantage to all. Unified control is the most economical method-the only method, in my opinion-of supplying the central provinces with fuel from the east and west. For instance, if the mine owners are at liberty to increase the price at the mines beyond a reasonable amount, or the transportation companies raise their rates, then the whole structure falls. The fuel controllers in the different provinces will be useful witnesses as to actual conditions. The premiers and ministers of mines of the various provinces should have an opportunity to express their views before the committee, as well as other prominent men who are interested in this problem. The meetings of this committee should not be held especially for the cross-examination of witnesses, but to receive information tendered in a co-operative spirit. In other words, the committee in making this inquiry is seeking no victims for its wrath but seeking information as to the probable trend of the coal industry, the methods needed for its protection and advancement, and the possibilities which the future may hold for its development. The committee in preparing its report for the government should have the views of a number of leaders in this industry and those connected with transportation companies. In the second paragraph you will notice I ask that the committee investigate our present sources of supply of anthracite and bituminous coal, the dependability of such 14011-100i sources and whether the price paid by the Canadian consumer is fair and reasonable. This will be an easy matter for the committee to handle, and one in which the officials of this government would be asked to assist, along with the officials of our local governments. With the enormous supplies of bituminous coal, coal that belongs to the people of Canada in our eastern and western provinces, we can depend upon a supply of domestic fuel. Bituminous coal is the only heat producing material of which we have an adequate supply to provide for a long time in the future. Our people should also remember that anthracite coal can no longer remain the mainstay of the Canadian household. Even if the supplies were continuous, it is insufficient. The output of the anthracite mines has remained stationary for many years, in the face of a growing population dependent upon it, and during the last ten years the price has nearly doubled, adding to the domestic fuel bill of the people of the United States an amount estimated at forty million dollars a year and many millions to the fuel bill of the people of Canada. Within the next ten years we must replace a large part of our present anthracite coal supply with some other form of heat. Sooner or later we must learn to manage without anthracite, and the sooner we learn to use other fuels the better. Competition must be introduced into an industry where monopoly is threatened. Fuel oil has during the last few years promised an avenue of escape, but at best this can only be temporary. We must look elsewhere. I have in my possession enough material to convince any serious-minded man that the Canadian people have passed through a serious crisis owing to the shortage of coal. We must remember that eastern Canada's present annual coal requirements amount to about twenty million tons, and if it were transported from the west it would be equivalent to transporting an additional 600 million bushels of grain from west to east. Arrangements for the transportation of this immense quantity of coal could not be made in a few months. Could Canadian coal be utilized we would help Alberta and Nova Scotia and save for Canada annually very large- sums which now go to the coal barons of the United States. The last part of the resolution reads: And to also inquire as to the methods of mining and delivering Canadian coal in the best and cheapest way to all parts of the Dominion, for the purpose of giving employment to our workmen, freight to our transportation companies, and thus effecting a saving of money now spent for this commodity in other countries. Fuel Supply



The latter part of this paragraph is an accepted fact, providing that we can solve the first part, that is, to inquire into the methods of mining and delivering Canadian coal in the best and cheapest way to all parts of the Dominion. A plan to assure purchase of stated amounts of Alberta coal and to bring it to central Canada at a rate that will allow of an attractive selling price for home or factory is conceded to be the need of the hour. This is a problem to which the Alberta and Ontario governments are giving their attention. They cannot definitely settle it without the aid of the Canadian government. One of the first questions that should come before the committee is the question of water transportation of coal from Nova Scotia to Quebec and Montreal, including loading and unloading facilities at the points named. Another matter that should receive the early attention of the committee is the handling of Alberta coal by lake and rail. I have given a great deal of personal attention to this phase of the question and believe that I am in a position to place before the committee indisputable statements that will completely change the preconceived idea that we must look to the railroads alone to solve this problem of transportation. The railroads will be expected to handle the coal from the Alberta mines to the head of the lakes, under improved transportation facilities. By the use of car tipples coal can be unloaded into boats at the rate of forty cars per hour, and if the capacity of the cars is from 50 to 75 or 100 tons a boat will be loaded in a few hours. The machinery for the unloading of coal from cars into boats has been greatly improved during the past few years and the likelihood of loss through the disintegration of coal has been largely eliminated. The coal is taken from open cars to a closed vessel and not exposed again or jarred as it would be over the railroad, owing to the starting and stopping of the trains. This coal if taken to Ontario ports by boat could be unloaded by the most improved machinery very quickly, and at a tremendous saving to the people. I am credibly informed that coal can be loaded at Port Arthur and Port William, and delivered by boat to such ports as Midland, Owen Sound and Goderich on lake Huron at less than one dollar per ton; that the same coal can be delivered at Sarnia, Wallaceburg, Windsor and lake Erie ports at $1 per ton from Port Arthur and Fort William; and at Hamilton, Toronto and Kingston at a little over $1 per ton from the same ports. Midland is 90 miles from Toronto by rail and cars can be loaded direct from the boat. Other ports could be used in a like manner for inland delivery. Consider the tremendous saving in freight, why should this not be investigated? And what better means of investigation than by a committee composed of members of this House? This proposition will require the expenditure of public money* for the building of the car tipples and unloading devices, and perhaps the fitting up of some of our merchant marine vessels to carry the coal. We have spent millions, yes, tens of millions of public money, in building public docks, piers and elevators, for the handling of grain. Why not a little to help bring Alberta coal to Ontario and Nova Scotia coal to Quebec? Private individuals or companies will not undertake this work, nor will provincial governments do it. It is for this government to undertake it, and the committee will show the way. Let me give you a few facts to support my arguments. Ninety per cent of the people in the state of Michigan burn bituminous coal similar to the Alberta coal. Boats from Toledo and Cleveland supply nearly all the ports between Detroit and Duluth in the United States, and even carry coal to Port Arthur and Fort William. Twenty-six million long tons of coal were carried by boat up the lakes from Cleveland and 28,000,000 tons were carried by boat from Toledo. The Pringle Barge Line Company, whose headquarters are at Cleveland, Ohio, carries all the coal used by the Imperial Oil Company of Sarnia, the Morton Salt Company of Port Huron, the Edison Electric Company of Port Huron and the Diamond Crystal Salt Company of St. Clair. These four firms use in excess of half a million tons of coal per year, and each of them is equipped in a crude way for unloading to their docks and sometimes the boats are delayed. Mr. Pringle says that he has a contract running over a term of years with these firms, and for the purpose he is having one of his boats equipped with a self-unloading conveyor so that he can go to any port and unload his own boat. This conveyor system installed in the boat seems to be an excellent plan, as no further equipment on the dock is necessary to unload vessels. The conveyor bucket system does not break the coal up nearly as much as using any other type such as clam shell. The Morton Salt Company of Port Huron, Michigan, make this statement:- The cost of unloading boats depends on the style or shape of the boat. For instance, we use a Mead-Mor-rison unloading rig with a three-ton clam. We have unloaded some boats for less than 3 cents a ton; others have cost as high as 5 cents or 0 cents, due to the trimming necessary to transfer the coal to where the clam could get at it. Then, the size and style oI


IS, 1926


Fuel Supply the unloading rig have a lot to do with it, and if an automatic trimmer is used, it reduces the cost materially, for the greatest cost is in the trimming. Mr. Thomas Draper, Port Huron, Michigan, well posted in these matters, says:- Last week while in Cleveland I had an interview with Mr. J. P. Doyle, Sales Manager of the Pittsburg Coal Co., Cleveland. This firm is one of the largest distributors of coal in the United States, having fleets of tow boats and barges on the Ohio and Mississippi rivers and also many boats on the Great Lakes. Mr. Doyle stated they generally load their boats with the car dumpers which are installed at the different lake Erie docks and they unload with the McMyler whorlies. These are of all sizes, from 2£ to 5 ton. He showed me several statements where vessels of 5,800 to 6,000 tons were unloaded to cars or docks at an average cost of 9 cents per ton. These whorlies swing on a radius of about 54 feet. He further mentioned that at Algonquin and Soo docks, where they unload a great deal of coal, they use 2^ ton whorlies which they run almost constantly during the 24 hours, and at these busy points the cost of unloading is about 7 cents per ton. I have further information that most of the stone boats unload very much cheaper than this by means of a conveyor system the same as the Pringle Barge Lines are installing for the coal trade in the St. Clair river. This latter plan does not require any machinery on the dock as the boats can run it into any dock and unload with their own machinery. The railroads claim that the lowest rate coal can be carried from Alberta points to points in Ontario is $9 per ton. The National Railways this year agreed to bring 25,000 tons at $7 and did bring 18,000 tons, which was distributed to about 180 different localities in Ontario and shipments were then discontinued until after western grain had been moved. However, the lake and rail haul is feasible, and it would, of course, be cheaper than all rail. Port Arthur and Fort William are about 1,200 miles from Edmonton, while Toronto is 2,000, and coal ought to be carried to the head of the lakes for three-fifths of the through rate. Taking $9 as a basis, I consider that coal should be carried to the head of the lakes for $5.40. In regard to cost of the lake haul, United States coal is now carried from lake Erie points to the head of the lakes at 60 cents per ton, exclusive of 5 cents for loading and 10 cents for unloading. Iron ore from Duluth to lake Erie ports is carried at $1 per long ton of 2,240 pounds, and as most of the vessels carrying ore down the lakes return light, a one-way cargo at $1 per ton evidently pays all expenses. The grain rate from Duluth to Buffalo is 1J cents per bushel or 50 cents per ton. I am advised by marine experts that if $1 per ton were offered on coal, Port Arthur or Fort William to Georgian bay, Windsor or lake Erie points, it would be the best paying freight on the lakes and be very attractive to vessel owners. From the figures I have it may be assumed that a rail-and-water rate on Alberta coal should be less than $7 per ton, made up as follows: Edmonton to Port Arthur $5 40 Loading to boat 40 Boat charge 1 00 Unloading 10 Total 56 60 I have gone very thoroughly into loading and unloading methods, and can report that up-to-date coal dumpers, including graded trucks, capable of dumping 2,000 tons per hour could be installed at a cost of from $400,000 to $500,000, and these would dump gondola or any kind of open cars. There are already a number of ports on Georgian Bay, as well as Sarnia, Windsor and some lake Erie ports, that are equipped to unload coal. I have obtained information with regard to the loading system of the Hocking Valley Railway at Toledo, where two coal tipples last year, up to December 11th, transferred from cars to boats more than 8,000,000 tons of coal. Each of these tipples has a capacity of 2,000 tons per hour rating on 50 ton cars, but this is greatly increased when they dump 60, 70, 80, 90 or 100 ton cars, as they take no longer to dump than 50-ton cars. On this average for the season, it costs less than 5 cents per ton to transfer from cars to boats. During the loading of the steamer Henry Ford at the Baltimore & Ohio docks in Toledo recently, the actual time of dumping a large gondola car was about one and a half minutes, and it takes about the same time to handle the cars on and off the tipple, so that the capacity of this tipple is about 40 cars per hour. We collect $135,000,000 of Canadian money and send it to the United States for coal. What do we get for it? Then we collect from our people another $135,000,000 to send again to the United States next year. And so the grind goes on while our miners and their families are starving and our resources lie undeveloped. Would not this Dominion government be justified in spending a million dollars in equipping two unloading docks at Port Arthur and Fort William, and another million for largo gondola cars for the special coal traffic? This would mean increased labour for Canadian railroad men, Canadian steamboat employees and Canadian coal miners of the West. The latter would have an all the year trade, instead of for only a few months as at present. If this arrangement could be worked out, the mine owners would soon reduce the cost of mining, for their overhead would then be spread over an entire year instead of a few months as at present, and the miners would take less wages for steady work all the year round. Fuel Supply



Our western provinces have learned the lesson of carrying anthracite coal by lake and rail to Winnipeg and the west. It was like carting coal to Newcastle as the great province of Alberta is practically undermined with coal. Ninety per cent of the coal now used in Winnipeg comes from Alberta. And then in the east we have the province of Nova Scotia which has enormous mines of coal capable of supplying the eastern provinces for ages to come. We might well ask: If grain and cattle can be carried at preferential rates from the western provinces, why cannot coal be granted the same rates? Let me quote the Montreal Star of February 6, 1926: Winnipeg, Man., Feb. 8th. Roughly speaking one and a half per cent of the 195,637,112 bushels of grain shipped by the Canadian Pacific Railway since the opening of the season, August 1, 1925, to January 31, 1026, went by the all rail route or exactly 3,182,198 bushels. About one-eighth or 30,210,134 bushels travelled out through the port of Vancouver and all the remainder, or fully 85 per cent, was shipped via Fort William. Figures to this effect were issued by the Canadian Pacific transportation department. This is an interesting statement, proving the advantage of lake as well as rail transportation. If grain can be so carried, why not coal? The same boats could be used for both. If 75 per cent of the wheat can be carried by lake and rail, why not coal?


March 15, 1926