Right Hon. L. S. St. Laurent (Prime Minister):
Mr. Speaker, as you know, we have all been deeply moved by the news of the disasters both on sea and on land that have taken place as a result of the terrible storms raging about the United Kingdom, and the channel between the United Kingdom and continental Europe.
We do not know as yet just the extent of the disaster, but we do know that very many lives have been lost, that many, many families have been forced to evacuate their homes, and that there has been a great destruction of property. I think I can assume that I would have the consent of every hon. member if I were to put a motion at this time in connection with this disaster. We all remember what great comfort our people got out of the sympathy of the peoples of those lands when disasters overtook some of our fellow citizens in the Fraser valley, in Manitoba, in Rimouski and Cabano in my native province of Quebec. We all know how much good it does to people who are in the throes of such disaster to realize that they have the active and concrete sympathy of those they regard as their friends.
If I may have unanimous consent to move the motion, without the usual notice, I do move, seconded by the Leader of the Opposition (Mr. Drew):
That His Honour the Speaker be asked to convey to Her Majesty the Queen, to Her Majesty the Queen of the Netherlands and to His Majesty the King of the Belgians the deep sympathy of the Commons of Canada to the people of the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and Belgium who have been so sorely stricken by the appalling disaster which has befallen them and the earnest desire of the Canadian people to manifest their sympathy to the sufferers in such concrete form as, after more accurate information is available about the actual needs, will prove to be the most helpful to them in their great distress.