February 10, 1932

CON

James Earl Lawson

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LAWSON:

Surely the hon. member is wandering very far away from the motion before the house. In the first place, Mr. Speaker, may I point out that standing order 31 is an extraordinary provision to meet an extraordinary condition, namely a matter of urgent public importance. Under this rule a matter may be discussed, so I understand, which could not be brought before the house under the ordinary rules of procedure or in the ordinary course of a session. The hon. member for New Westminster (Mr. Reid) has moved a motion; you, sir, 'have ruled that it is of sufficient public importance to merit debate. What is the motion of the hon. member? It is t'o discuss a situation which has arisen in the municipality of Burnaby in the province of British Columbia. I listened to the hon. member for Vancouver Centre (Mr. Mackenzie) make a speech in which he endeavoured to capitalize politically an apparent difference of opinion or adjustment of moneys between the government of this dominion and that of the province of British Columbia.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
Permalink
?

Some hon. MEMBERS:

Order, order.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
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CON

James Earl Lawson

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LAWSON:

He did not direct one word to the situation which has arisen in the municipality of Burnaby. The hon. member for Comox-Alberni (Mr. Neill) has digressed to tell us about the general administration of the Unemployment Relief Act in the province of British Columbia and the condition in road camps, but I submit that on an extraordinary motion such as this, hon. members should be strictly confined to the subject matter under discussion, in this instance the situation in the municipality of Burnaby in the province of British Columbia.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
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IND

Alan Webster Neill

Independent

Mr. NEILL:

Speaking to the point of

order may I say it is a well known rule in this house that if latitude is given to one

Unemployment Relief-Mr. Munn

man it must be given to another. If you say "A" you also must say "B." The Minister of Labour (Mr. Gordon) made a general resume of the situation in British Columbia and I have done no more. I submit that so long as I can confine myself to generalities of that description I am in order, because I am following strictly the remarks and the precedent established by the Minister of Labour.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
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CON

Pierre Édouard Blondin (Speaker of the Senate)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPEAKER:

I must rule that the

point raised by the hon. member for West York (Mr. Lawson) is well taken. It may be true that the hon. member for Comox-Alberni (Mr. Neill) is not transgressing the rule any more than others who have spoken to-day. The Minister of Labour dealt with the subject in a general way, and all hon. members who have spoken have followed his example. Nevertheless the point having been raised by the hon. member for West York that hon. members must address themselves to the particular matter raised by the hon. member for New Westminster (Mr. Reid), the rule must be enforced. Therefore I ask the hon. member for Comox-Alberni and any other hon. members of the house who wish to address themselves to the motion to confine themselves strictly to a discussion of the matter before the house. The discussion must concern a situation which has arisen in the municipality of Burnaby in the province of British Columbia, and may not extend to a discussion of the question of unemployment generally. I ask hon. members to confine their discussion to the situation existing in the municipality of Burnaby, in the province of British Columbia.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
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IND

Alan Webster Neill

Independent

Mr. NEILL:

Mr. Speaker, I suggest your

decision may be all right, but it has been made at the wrong time; it should have been made when the Minister of Labour was speaking. I go on, then, under your direction confining myself to the situation whioh has arisen in Burnaby, with the feeling that there appears to be one rule for myself and another for other hon. members.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
Permalink
?

Some hon. MEMBERS:

Order.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
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CON

James Earl Lawson

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LAWSON:

I think, sir, to say the

least it is an insult to the Speaker of this house when an hon. member suggests that the Speaker applies one ruling to him and another ruling to other hon. members.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
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IND

Alan Webster Neill

Independent

Mr. NEILL:

I did not say "another ruling."

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
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CON

Pierre Édouard Blondin (Speaker of the Senate)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPEAKER:

It is not fair for the hon. member for Comox-Alberni to make such a statement, and if he did I should hope he would retract it.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
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IND

Alan Webster Neill

Independent

Mr. NEILL:

For the sake of harmonyand at such an early date in the session we want harmony-may I say that there is but one rule, but it is applied at a different time to different members. If I may be allowed to-

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
Permalink
CON

Martin James Maloney

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MALONEY:

In that event I should

like to suggest that you, Mr. Speaker, allow the hon. member to rave on.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
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IND

Alan Webster Neill

Independent

Mr. NEILL:

I am sorry to say that I did not hear the remarks of the hon. member who has just taken his seat.

Reverting to the situation as it applies to the situation in Burnaby, and to the remarks by the hon. member for New Westminster (Mr. Reid), and with the knowledge many hon. members from British Columbia and myself must possess to the effect that the same situation is duplicated in many other parts of British Columbia, I would urge this government to take some really drastic steps to end the situation as revealed by the hon. member for New Westminster. Such conditions cannot be smoothed over in a few days or weeks. It is going to be accentuated, and it will be duplicated in many other parts of the country. I honestly believe that I am speaking in the best interests of the province from which I come when I say to the government that they should seriously consider the appointment of a commissioner with very sweeping powers to go to British Columbia and handle the situation very much as though British Columbia were more or less in the hands of the receiver. I think an able, capable commissioner would put an end to the situation which has been outlined to some extent by the hon. member for New Westminster (Mr. Reid) and myself, and I do not believe anything less will meet the situation. It needs a strong, capable man vested with wide powers from this government, and if the situation is not so handled it will get worse. I earnestly hope the Minister of Labour will seriously consider this suggestion.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
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LIB

Albert Edward Munn

Liberal

Mr. A. E. MUNN (Vancouver North):

Mr. Speaker, I am familiar with the situation in Burnaby, and to my mind it is very serious. Every hon. member of this house should be only too glad to devote a little time to the matter if something can be accomplished. Burnaby adjoins my riding of Vancouver North; there we have the same trouble, and in fact it extends over practically the whole of British Columbia. Just because we have perhaps the finest climate in the world, and because a lot of people have gone to Burnaby and other parts of British Columbia, is no

y2 COMMONS

Unemployment Relief-Mr. Hanson (Skeena)

reason why they should be allowed to starve. Arrangements were made not only in Burnaby but in other parts of the province for thousands of men to do road work, but to-day if you go there you will find that they are not working. Every hon. member here should be anxious to relieve a situation which, to say the least, has become desperate.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
Permalink
LIB

Olof Hanson

Liberal

Mr. OLOF HANSON (Skeena):

Mr. Speaker, as a member from British Columbia I am also familiar with the situation in Burnaby. I was there about two weeks ago and could not help seeing that the situation is very serious. But, as my colleague from Vancouver North (Mr. Munn) has said, conditions are the same throughout British Columbia. In Prince Rupert the same condition prevails. I have no criticism to offer of the federal government; I think they were sincere last year when they voted money for unemployment relief, but I must agree with other speakers when they say that the money is being misused in British Columbia. If anything I believe this government should be congratulated upon stopping payments to the province of British Columbia, because I think it has been discovered that the British Columbia government is not capable of handling the money. Not only in Burnaby but in Prince Rupert and other places money was spent for the construction of camps while those who actually needed relief could not get work at all. Most of the men in Burnaby and nearby places received only six-teen days employment. Sixteen days in the fall of the year is not sufficient to keep a man for the winter, so I think if a man could be sent to British Columbia to take charge of affairs, as has been suggested, it would be a great help to the country at large, to the province of British Columbia and to the municipality.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
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IND

Angus MacInnis

Independent Labour

Mr. ANGUS MacINNIS (Vancouver South):

It was not my intention, Mr. Speaker, to take part in this debate, but it seems to me that the reply of the Minister of Labour (Mr. Gordon) was extremely weak. Here we have a situation which has arisen because of a dispute between the federal and provincial governments as to the payment of men on relief work in the municipality of Burnaby. It has nothing whatever to do with the climate of British Columbia or with the immigration policies of past governments of this country. It is true that there may be quite a number of transients in the province of British Columbia and also in the municipality of Burnaby, but at present they are not affected by the statement made by the hon. member for New Westminster (Mr. Reid).

So far as my information goes they are looked after by the provincial government in the camps that were built when the unemployment relief scheme was begun.

The main question is this: These men on unemployment relief in Burnaby are working for very low wages; they are working part time, yet, after having done their work, because of the dispute between the two governments they cannot get the pittance which is coming to them. That is the point of the whole matter, and we wish to get some assurance now that in the future they will not have to wait for their money. We do not want to hear about the climate of British Columbia; we know all about that. We do not care particularly to hear about the immigration policies of past governments; we have always protested against them. But at this time we do want to know that when these people have done their work for their low wages, they will not have to suffer further privation through having to wait for the federal and provincial governments to come to an understanding as to how and when they are to be paid.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
Permalink
CON

Pierre Édouard Blondin (Speaker of the Senate)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPEAKER:

Does the hon. member for New Westminster (Mr. Reid) wish to reply? If so he will close the debate.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
Permalink
LIB

Thomas Reid

Liberal

Mr. REID:

Before withdrawing the motion I should like to have had some assurance from the Minister of Labour that this situation would be looked into, because I think it is unique in all Canada.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
Permalink
CON

Pierre Édouard Blondin (Speaker of the Senate)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPEAKER:

The practice is to withdraw the motion at the conclusion of the debate, it being a motion for the adjournment of the house, and the debate having concluded early in the sitting. Under such circumstances it is not usual to put the motion. Is the hon. member prepared to withdraw his motion?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
Permalink
LIB

Thomas Reid

Liberal

Mr. REID:

Yes.

Motion withdrawn.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Sub-subtopic:   MOTION FOB ADJOURNMENT TO DISCUSS MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE-SITUATION IN BURNABY, B.C.
Permalink

February 10, 1932