Mr. MACKENZIE KING:
The minister seems to take exception to my words because they suggest a nationwide scheme, and he says he assumes that I had in mind what has been proposed from this side as a national commission that would co-operate with the provinces and municipalities in an endeavour to deal with this great problem of unemployment relief. What I had in mind was what the government announced in the speech from the throne on March 12, 1931, as the policy which it intended to put into effect. On that date the speech from the throne made this announcement:
The operation of The Unemployment Relief Act, 1930, has proved equally beneficial. While the grant authorized by this act could not immediately have checked unemployment arising from causes of which you have full knowledge, yet its careful administration by my ministers, ably aided by the provincial and municipal governments and the two great railway systems, has resulted in the institution of a nation-wide program of public undertakings, each one a unit in a scheme of national development, which have collectively provided work for the greatest number of men who have ever been employed through the direct efforts of the federal government.
That was the announcement of the government's policy-a great national scheme of development as a means of helping to solve the problem of unemployment-and to-day the minister tells us that to speak of a nationwide scheme is only to try to introduce something that will embarrass the whole situation. I just want to make clear to him that the government did begin by announcing its intention to deal with -the problem in a nationwide fashion in order to help to solve the problem, but it has thrown that policy to the winds and the only policy it now has is that of the dole. It is not in a position at the moment to announce anything in the shape of a comprehensive, coordinated, constructive plan of dealing with this great problem.
Subtopic: CONTINUATION FOR ONE YEAR OF PROVISIONS OF RELIEF ACT, 1932