July 25, 1944

NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

Well, they do not know what is good for them. If they would eat some of the Atlantic fish they might have a few more brains; at least that is the theory down there.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
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LIB

George Alexander Cruickshank

Liberal

Mr. CRUICKSHANK:

It is not always

apparent.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
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NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

I do not

know whether that is intended to have any personal application, but if so I resent the implication as far as I am concerned. However, that is merely in passing. I want the minister to understand that I am really interested in this matter, in trying to work out some solution for what I believe will be a critical period in the history of the fisher folk among whom

Fisheries Prices

I was bom, whom I knew intimately as a lad, j>nd whom I have seen rise at three and four o'clock in the morning to go down to the sea and fish under extreme difficulties. They attract my sympathy, and if I can help I want to do so. But I do not see that the minister has told us anything practical that this proposed board can do except, as the hon. member for Comox-Alberni has said, to buy all the fish that may be offered. And then what? I thought my agricultural friends would go into the matter more deeply than they did, and perhaps they will when the bill is brought down-

Mr. CRUiCIvSHANK: They will when the bill comes down.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
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NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

There is a time and place for everything, and my hon. friend might contain himself for a few moments. I want the minister to tell us what the government propose to do. They are going to set up a board and, according to this resolution, place $25,000,000 at its disposal.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
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LIB

Ernest Bertrand (Minister of Fisheries)

Liberal

Mr. BERTRAND (Laurier):

We are going to appropriate $25,000,000 if, as and when necessary.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
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NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

As a sort of revolving fund, if I read this resolution correctly; and this board is going to have authority to purchase, through agents or otherwise, staple fisheries products at prices recommended by the board and approved by the governor in council, or to make such payments in respect of staple fisheries products as may be necessary to bring average returns to producers up to the prices so approved. That, of course, is a fair hope, but I want the minister to tell us how he proposes to accomplish that end. Or is this just a gesture before an election?

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
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LIB

James Layton Ralston (Minister of National Defence)

Liberal

Mr. RALSTON:

Wait for the bill.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
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NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

The Minister of National Defence says to wait for the bill. Probably the bill will be brought down next week, in the dying days of the session; I presume it is not prepared yet. The principles underlying this resolution and the bill which will be founded upon it should be given proper consideration. Has the minister a plan? If so, I challenge him to lay it on the table.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
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LIB

James Layton Ralston (Minister of National Defence)

Liberal

Mr. RALSTON:

Is my hon. friend for floor prices for fish, or is he not? It seems to me that is the principle dealt with in the resolution.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
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NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

The Minister of National Defence has no right to crossexamine me. That is an old trick; when you

are addressing one minister someone else asks a question to divert attention. You cannot do that with me. The net is set for me in vain in that respect. I am going to say this. Already I have made it clear that I am in favour of something being done to alleviate the condition of the fishermen in the transition period, and it may be that in default of any better plan we will have to give bonuses and subsidies.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
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LIB

James Layton Ralston (Minister of National Defence)

Liberal

Mr. RALSTON:

That is pretty general.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
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NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

If you

cannot provide any other plan for the alleviation of the condition of the fishermen than subsidies, then I am going to vote for the plan, but for a limited period of time. That is very explicit, in reply to the Minister of National Defence. But I want to know if the government has a plan; I want the minister to tell us on this resolution. Then, in the light of the statements of the minister, we will consider the provisions of the bill and see if they measure up to that plan.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
Permalink
LIB

James Layton Ralston (Minister of National Defence)

Liberal

Mr. RALSTON:

The bill is the plan.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
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NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

Then the government must have a plan in mind in order to formulate the bill, so let us have it. I suspect that the bill is not drafted.

Mr. GARDINER [DOT] Oh, yes.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
Permalink
NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

Then the plan must be in mind and we should have it here.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
Permalink
LIB

James Layton Ralston (Minister of National Defence)

Liberal

Mr. RALSTON:

The only point is that

that means discussing it twice.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
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NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

I have

seen it given twice; the rules provide for that. The minister cannot rush us at this stage. I want to know what the plan is, what is proposed in the bill, how the government propose to solve the difficulties of the fishermen, which is most devoutly to be wished for, and I do not think we get it here. We do not get even the kernel of it. What are we going to do with the huge surplus of fish that will be dumped on our doorstep if the prices set by this board are such as to encourage wholesale production? That is what I want to know. Are we to burn them up, as they are said to be burning up valuable stuff on the Alaska highway? Are we to dump this fish back into the ocean, as they dumped coffee in Brazil to keep up the price? I do not know, and 1 think the minister must tell us.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
Permalink
LIB

Gordon Benjamin Isnor

Liberal

Mr. ISNOR:

I approach this resolution

from a different angle than that from which other hon. members have spoken on it. I welcome this measure. I come from the Atlantic coast, where I have been closely associated

Fisheries Prices

with fishing villages in Halifax county,, and in touch with other Nova Scotia fishing districts. I believe I express the thought of the fishermen when I say they welcome such a measure. Other hon. members may be more conversant with fishing on a large scale, and I rather agree with one hon. gentleman who thought that this suggested board should be larger. I do not think a board with three members will be able to meet the requirements of Canada. This is a big country and the fishing industry on the Atlantic coast has different interests from those of the industry' on the Pacific coast.

The fishing industry represents approximately 875,000,000 of new wealth to Canada. Of this, $38,059,559 is produced on the Pacific coast, in British Columbia, while we on the Atlantic, in Nova Scotia produce something like $15,299,446. Of the total of $75,000,000, approximately $51,907,000 is export business. I am interested in maintaining that export business, because it means additional money and wealth for our people. It is for these reasons that I am particularly concerned about this measure. We have not the bill before us, so that I do not know just what its provisions will be. I do not know how we are going to overcome the price-fixing policy. The fishing industry is different from the agricultural industry. A fresh fish lasts only eight, nine or ten days before it begins to deteriorate. I want to see it made possible for our fishermen to obtain greater returns so that they may receive what we have been trying to get for them- for so many years-an adequate living.

The resolution will be followed by a bill which is to provide for the support of prices during the transition period from war to peace. There is to be established- a board with authority to purchase fisheries products at prices recommended by the board and approved by the governor in council. But there are a few words in the resolution which are important to the producers or the fishermen. The board is to be given such powers as may be necessary for the handling and disposition of products purchased. I feel that every hon. member who is interested- in the lot of the fisherman, who wants to see him provided with a better livelihood, should be in favour of a measure such as this.

As I said before, I do not know just what will be contained in the bill. No doubt I shall have further remarks to make on the different clauses of the bill. In Nova Scotia we have 6,115 fishermen and in Halifax county there are 802 active fishermen. So that we are interested in a measure such as this. I hope that when the board is set up it wjll not mean that just an election gesture is being made,

as has been suggested, but that something worth-while is being done for the fishermen, not only on the Atlantic coast but throughout all parts of the dominion.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
Permalink
LIB

Thomas Reid

Liberal

Mr. REID:

To my mind this resolution will provide something for which the fishermen have been looking for the past twenty years at least. I cannot understand why the proceedings should be stopped at this stage in order to get the bill. The principle is sound and it will be welcomed by fishermen on both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts. I say, let us have the bill.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
Permalink
NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

That is all very well, but I want the plan and I am entitled to get it at this stage. It may or may not be in the bill. The minister has not had an opportunity to answer my request.

Topic:   FISHERIES PRICES
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR STABILIZATION, PURCHASE OF STAPLE PRODUCTS AT APPROVED PRICES, ETC.
Permalink

July 25, 1944