Hon. C. G. POWER (Minister of Pensions and National Health) moved for leave to introduce Bill No. 2, to incorporate the Canadian Patriotic Fund.
He said: The purpose of the bill, an act to incorporate the patriotic fund, is to set up a corporation the object of which will be to collect, administer and distribute a fund for the assistance in case of need of the wives, children and dependents in Canada of officers and men who may be on active service in the naval, military or air forces of his majesty or of any allied or associated power.
The patriotic fund was first set up in 1900 to care for the dependents of those who served in the South African war. It was reconsti-
Canadian Patriotic Fund
tuted in 1914 to care for those who served during the great war and it continued in operation until 1937. During the course of its operation it collected by voluntary contributions from the people of Canada approximately $48,000,000. Immediately after the war, in 1919, the government of Canada contributed the sum of $900,000 to permit the fund to carry on its operations during the immediate post-war period.
The patriotic fund also served as an agency for the government in the distribution of un employment assistance. When it was wound up in 1937 there was an amount of approximately 82,000 to its credit, which was handed over to the Canadian pension commission for distribution to ex-soldiers.
The bill which is presented is in exactly the same terms as that of 1914. I should like to call the attention of the house to the persons named as incorporators. It was considered advisable to name a certain number of persons who were in more or less of an official capacity, that is to say, to follow what might be termed an official list. The list comprises, first, His Excellency the Governor General, Lady Tweedsmuir, the Prime Minister, the Leader of the Opposition, the Minister of Justice, the Minister of Finance, the Minister of Pensions and National Health, the leaders of other groups in the house, the lady members of the house and of the senate, the wife of His Honour the Speaker of the House, the wife of His Honour the Speaker of the Senate, the lieutenant governors of the various provinces, the leaders of government in the various provinces and the leaders of the opposition.
This committee of incorporators has power to add to its numbers and will doubtless appoint secretaries and the like. It was not thought advisable to go outside this official list at the moment, in order that there might be as little as possible in the way of discussion as to just whose names should appear.