June 28, 1956

SC

Frederick George Hahn

Social Credit

Mr. Hahn:

I have another matter in mind. Probably it should come under subsection 2 of this section, but perhaps not. At this time we do have a high level of employment. If we have a bit of a decline in the employment level what will happen? During July and August of each year a great number of students take up employment. Their parents may be unemployed and not qualified for unemployment insurance. Would these students be considered as eligible for relief assistance under this legislation?

Topic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   S492 HOUSE OF
Permalink
LIB

Paul Joseph James Martin (Minister of National Health and Welfare)

Liberal

Mr. Martin:

They would if they were in the normal work group. A group of students who work for a couple of months, of course, are not part of the working force, and this legislation applies to the individual.

Topic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   S492 HOUSE OF
Permalink
PC

Owen C. Trainor

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Trainor:

It seems to me, as the hon. member for Lanark has pointed out, that the term "nursing home" really demands more definite definition, because in most provinces of the country the nursing home is to a degree synonymous with a hospital, perhaps a hospital of a lower grade. Most of the people in a nursing home are ill. Some of them, or a fair proportion of them, care for the chronically ill but not the acutely ill. Nevertheless they are people who require nursing and medical care. Unless this legislation is going to conflict with the proposed hospital legislation I think there should be a complete definition of the term "nursing home".

Topic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   S492 HOUSE OF
Permalink
PC

John George Diefenbaker

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Diefenbaker:

Mr. Chairman, certainly if the draftsmen of this section had tried to be incomprehensible they could not have done a more complete job. I suggest that no one

reading section 4 subsection 2, with subsection 3 (a) could really understand what

this means. Subsection 2 says:

Except as provided in subsection (3), an agreement shall, for the purposes of this act, exclude from unemployment assistance costs

(a) payments made to or on behalf of persons who are inmates of any institution or class of institution maintained in whole or in part out of funds provided by Canada, a province, a municipality or a charitable organization.

Then I pass the paragraphs without comment because they do not come into issue. Subsection 3 reads;

An agreement may include as unemployment assistance costs

(a) payments made to or on behalf of persons who are inmates of homes for special care and who would not normally be cared for in general, acute, chronic or convalescent hospitals, tuberculosis sanitoria, mental institutions, institutions for incurables, orphanages or child welfare institutions.

The minister mentioned that there is an example of this in British Columbia. He did not say whether institutions of the kind mentioned in 3(a) are exclusive to British Columbia. Could this subsection not be simplified if it is to cover only certain institutions in British Columbia?

Topic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   S492 HOUSE OF
Permalink
LIB

Paul Joseph James Martin (Minister of National Health and Welfare)

Liberal

Mr. Martin:

It is to cover not only British Columbia. I just took that as an example because I was addressing myself to the hon. member for Comox-Alberni. It applies to every province.

Topic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   S492 HOUSE OF
Permalink
PC

John George Diefenbaker

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Diefenbaker:

Possibly the minister

could clarify it in this way, because to read 2(a) with 3(a) is to muddle any person who believes in careful language in definitions. Would the minister give an example of the kind of institution which would be operated under 3(a)? He indicated that there was one in British Columbia and possibly in some other province. It does seem that whoever drafted this did not himself clearly understand the meaning of section 8(a) of the draft agreement, now schedule A. The wording is almost the same as in 2(a), except that it says "payment to or on behalf of persons who are inmates of homes for special care".

What persons do receive any assistance because they are in homes for special care? What is the nature of the legislation in existence in any province that allows a person who is not in a general convalescent hospital, or in a sanatorium, a mental institution, an institution for incurables and the like, to qualify? What are the institutions; what is the nature of the institution; what is the qualification for payment to that institution; because the payment to that institution must be made by the province or by the municipality.

In an ordinary rest home a person pays for his or her keep. In these rest homes, or these convalescent homes, or homes similar to those referred to by the hon. member for Lanark and the hon. member for Winnipeg South Centre, ordinarily the individual pays; but apparently there are some institutions in existence in which people who are not sick, mentally afflicted, or do not have tuberculosis and the like, may be placed, and payment is made either by the province or by the municipality. Will the minister outline under what legislation provision is made for such an arrangement, because on the face of it these two sections look as incomprehensible as faulty draftsmanship could possibly achieve.

Topic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   S492 HOUSE OF
Permalink
LIB

Paul Joseph James Martin (Minister of National Health and Welfare)

Liberal

Mr. Martin:

Well, I think I can understand the feeling of my hon. friend in the matter, but it may be because of dealing with this thing more regularly that I feel it is not as difficult as my hon. friend says. I shall do my best to explain the situation again. My hon. friend has directed our attention to clause 4, subclause 2(a), which reads:

Except as provided in subsection (3), an agreement shall, for the purposes of this act. exclude from unemployment assistance costs-

Then paragraph (a) is set out, and that is the one he dealt with. It reads:

(a) payments made to or on behalf of persons who are inmates of any institution or class of institution maintained in whole or in part out of funds provided by Canada, a province, a municipality or a charitable organization.

The people in that group are out, so far as this act is concerned.

Topic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   S492 HOUSE OF
Permalink
PC
LIB

Paul Joseph James Martin (Minister of National Health and Welfare)

Liberal

Mr. Martin:

So far my hon. friend and I are in accord?

Topic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   S492 HOUSE OF
Permalink
PC
LIB

Paul Joseph James Martin (Minister of National Health and Welfare)

Liberal

Mr. Martin:

My hon. friend then says, "Look at subclause 3," which reads:

An agreement may include as unemployment assistance costs

(a) payments made to or on behalf of persons vho are inmates of homes for special care-

The words "special care" are to be underlined.

-and who would not normally be cared for-

This is descriptive.

-and who would not normally be cared for in general, acute, chronic or convalescent hospitals, tuberculosis sanatoria, mental institutions, institutions for incurables, orphanages or child welfare institutions.

The group of institutions that are described after the words "who would not normally be cared for," etc., are institutions that are maintained by the province. My hon. friend spoke

Unemployment Assistance of chronic cases. They would be covered, for instance, under the hospital insurance proposal as a hospital that would qualify the patients therein for the benefits of the hospital insurance program as is now the case in British Columbia. But my hon. friend says, "That may be true; that may be all well and good," and he says the thing that concerns him is what we mean by "homes for special care". Now, if he will look at clause 4, subclause 4-

Topic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   S492 HOUSE OF
Permalink
PC
LIB

Paul Joseph James Martin (Minister of National Health and Welfare)

Liberal

Mr. Martin:

-he will see where the words "homes for special care" are defined. They are defined as meaning:

. . . nursing homes, hostels for indigent transients, homes for the aged, poorhouses, almshouses and hostel facilities provided for the aged within housing projects constructed under the National Housing Act.

The hon. member asked me to give him examples of these institutions.

Topic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   S492 HOUSE OF
Permalink
PC

John George Diefenbaker

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Diefenbaker:

Could I interrupt for just a moment. Would these nursing homes, hospitals and homes for the aged and so on be nursing homes, etc., operated by the province?

Topic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   S492 HOUSE OF
Permalink
?

Murdo William Martin

Mr. Marlin:

Not necessarily, no.

Topic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   S492 HOUSE OF
Permalink
PC
?

Murdo William Martin

Mr. Marlin:

If my hon. friend wishes to listen to me I think he will follow this. For instance, there are Salvation Army hospitals all over the country. There is a Union Mission here in Ottawa, and there are homes for the aged. In New Brunswick I think they call them poorhouses or homes for the poor.

Topic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   S492 HOUSE OF
Permalink
CCF
?

Murdo William Martin

Mr. Marlin:

People in those institutions are not in hospitals. They are individuals who sometimes are destitute for one reason or another, but they do not need regular hospital care and they are people for whom the hospital is not prepared to provide assistance. That is the type of person who is covered. In every province there is a licensing inspection system under which they license (a) hospitals and (b) nursing homes. We accept the provincial definitions, and if we were to define "nursing homes" ourselves we would run counter to the definitions prescribed in provincial acts in all the provinces. Those are defined.

The hon. member for Comox-Alberni mentioned a possible complication. He mentioned that there might be an individual in one of these nursing homes who was indeed a chronic case. If that happened to be the situation the proper governing authority would see to it that he was provided for in an institution covered by the hospital insurance act in the province of British Columbia; but

Unemployment Assistance nursing homes are not hospitals as such. We have perhaps allowed ourselves to be confused by this phrase. Many of us are familiar with the type of nursing home which exists in the old country, which is in fact a small hospital. We ourselves have small institutions which are called nursing homes and are in fact hospitals, but it is not those about which we are speaking; it is the nursing home that is defined in the provincial acts for which there is a proper licensing system.

Topic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   S492 HOUSE OF
Permalink
CCF

Robert Ross (Roy) Knight

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Knight:

Mr. Chairman, I would like to direct a question to the minister. As I think he knows, in the province of Saskatchewan we have what we call hospitals which are provided by the provincial government in the first place. They are occupied by old people but not by aged people who live in old age homes as such; these are people who are in need of hospital care. For example, in my own city we have what we call the Saskatchewan government hospital. This is a hospital; they have trained nurses in attendance, and the patients receive a call every day from a qualified doctor.

I cannot for the life of me see how the definition of such an institution would be any different from that which is laid down in subclause 3 (a),-"persons who are inmates of homes for special care"-because that is why they are not in a place like Melfort where they have an old peoples' home. These are really old peoples' hospitals.

The institution was originally under the care of the province, but these aged people contribute to that institution probably from their old age pension or, if they are not of pensionable age, they pay a certain amount from their available funds. Does subclause 3(a), cover these people?

Topic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   S492 HOUSE OF
Permalink

June 28, 1956