On the Orders oif the Day:
Mr. JEAN-FRANCOIS POULIOT (Temis-couata): I would like to address a question
to the hon. Minister of Railways and Canals (Mr. Dunning) in regard to the so-called system of universal promotion for railway employees. I am told that there is an arrangement between the heads of the employees' brotherhoods to the effect that the system of universal promotion will be established in the near future. According to that system an employee who has seniority right in a railway region .will have that
seniority right all over that region. Accordingly a man from Riviere du Loup, in my constituency, will perhaps have to work on the Transcontenental railway if the other employees there are his juniors, and a man who works in New Brunswick may be sent to Prince Edivard Island or Nova Scotia or vice versa, for an indenfinite period of time. This would be very embarrassing to him, making it necessary to leave his family, and as everyone knows railway employees are not supposed to be Wandering Jews.
In that respect I would ask the Minister of Railways if it would not be proper, and if it is not the intention of the management of the Canadian National Railways, to ask the employees of every district to vote on that matter and decide among themselves what should be done in their own district.
Hon. CHARLES A. DUNNING. (Minister of Railways and Canals): I am informed,
Mr. Speaker, that these matters of seniority give considerable difficulty to the management of every railway in this country or in the United States. Up to the present it has been the policy of the management to endeavour, so far as possible, to have the men themselves, through their organizations, determine the broad general policy to be followed, provided that such a policy does not interfere with the proper management and conduct of the road, and does not add unduly to the cost of operation. With regard to the specific details to which my hon friend refers, there will, I am sure, be an excellent opportunity before the special committee which was appointed yesterday to go very thoroughly into details with the operating officers of the road, and I know that members whose constituents are affected will take advantage of that opportunity and get all detailed information regarding it.