January 22, 1957

PC

Edmund Davie Fulton

Progressive Conservative

Mr. E. D. Fulton (Kamloops):

Mr. Speaker, I beg leave, pursuant to standing order 26, to move the adjournment of the house for the purpose of discussing a definite matter of urgent public importance, namely the gross abuse of natural justice constituted by the methods followed at the hearing of the appeal of Christian George Hanna by an immigration appeal board in Vancouver, British Columbia, and the urgent necessity of suspending action in connection with the deportation of Mr. Hanna until his case has been fully considered and disposed of in accordance with proper and just procedures.

If I may, as to the urgency-

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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LIB

Louis Stephen St-Laurent (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)

Liberal

Right Hon. L. S. St. Laurent (Prime Minister):

I think the other day the hon. gentleman objected to anything being said after such a motion had been submitted to the Speaker for his opinion.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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PC

Edmund Davie Fulton

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Fulton:

And I recall that on that occasion the Speaker said the matter of urgency might properly be the subject of reference, and there was in fact a reference to that question by the right hon. gentleman.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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LIB

Louis-René Beaudoin (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Speaker:

I will first read the motion and see if I need any assistance. If I do, no doubt I will call upon the hon. gentleman. It strikes me on reading over the subject matter of the motion which the hon. member for Kamloops has submitted that, as a ground for the urgency of debate in this matter, he talks about the suspension of an action which is about to be taken with respect to the gentleman mentioned in the motion. Perhaps the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration (Mr. Pickersgill) could state whether or not there is an action contemplated having to do with the deportation of Mr. Hanna.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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LIB

John Whitney Pickersgill (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration)

Liberal

Hon. J. W. Pickersgill (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration):

Mr. Speaker, all I can state is what I hear on the radio and read in the press: that a gentleman who purports to be the solicitor for this person has applied to the supreme court of British Columbia, from which it would seem to me

that the case is before the courts and, therefore, hardly an appropriate subject for debate in this house.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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PC

Edmund Davie Fulton

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Fulton:

Perhaps I could say what I was told by the solicitor?

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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LIB

Louis-René Beaudoin (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Speaker:

Order.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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PC

Edmund Davie Fulton

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Fulton:

That following the process, which was called a hearing, before the immigration appeal board yesterday morning, the man was ordered to leave and was, according to my information at the time of the telephone call, in the process of being transported back to Port Alberni where the boat is lying in harbour and from which it is due to sail, I believe, tonight. Knowing the practice of the department in the past of disregarding notices of applications for writs of certiorari and their practice of trying to get people out of the country notwithstanding those notices having been served, unless the minister is able to state positively that this man will not be deported until after the case is heard, I submit there are grounds established by the wording of the motion for urgency of discussion and decision.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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LIB

Louis-René Beaudoin (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Speaker:

The hon. gentleman talks about urgency of discussion and decision. The only decision we can arrive at is that we adjourn the house, and the debate is over. That is the only decision we can arrive at today. The overriding practice, of course, is that while the debate on the address is currently proceeding, motions under standing order 26 are not accepted, and that has been the case, as the hon. gentleman knows, for many years.

There is no doubt that the matter referred to in this motion is one which many members regard with a great deal of sympathy, but as for putting aside the debate on the address today in order to discuss this matter-one which the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration has alleged may be before the courts -I hesitate to do so.

One must not forget that there has been moved a subamendment to the amendment on the main motion, and that today and tomorrow, if we go on with the debate on the address, members who have spoken on the main motion or on the amendment may speak again on the subamendment which was moved a few days ago.

Immigration-C. G. Hanna

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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PC

Edmund Davie Fulton

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Fullon:

On that particular question, Mr. Speaker, may I say that the purpose of a motion such as this is to enable the house to deal in a substantive manner with the subject matter complained of or brought to its attention. The only way that effective action can be taken in this instance is if we obtain from the minister, as a result of that process and discussion, an assurance that this man will not be sent out of Canada pending full and proper disposition of his case.

There is no way in the course of the speech from the throne debate in which that issue can be brought to a head. It can, I submit, only be brought to a head if you allow me to present this motion so that discussion can be directed towards that specific subject matter and the house can express its opinion and get a positive reaction and assurance from the minister on that basis. There is no way in the throne speech debate to bring about such a result. That is why it is urgent that that debate be adjourned.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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PC

James MacKerras Macdonnell

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Macdonnell:

Without purporting to give an opinion on the rules, are we not in danger of forgetting that this is the high court of parliament and are there not occasions when we may take such action as will try to ensure that natural justice will be done and that a department of this government, which after all is subject to this house, shall not be allowed to disregard the procedures of the law of the land?

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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PC

John George Diefenbaker (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Diefenbaker:

Mr. Speaker, there seems to be no other means whereby a measure of justice can be secured for this man than through a motion such as has been moved by the hon. member for Kamloops. The situation is simply this. If discussion takes place on the speech from the throne debate there is no means whereby the minister may be required to answer in any way and whereby parliament can act in order to prevent anything in the nature of a tyrannical use of absolute power.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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?

Some hon. Members:

Oh, oh.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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PC

John George Diefenbaker (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Diefenbaker:

I suggest that whatever the merits of the Hanna case may be there is no other recourse. Unless this motion is allowed, then, whatever the courts may subsequently decide, this man may be spirited away and may be out of the jurisdiction and an injustice will have been done. Indeed, to a great degree this is similar to the Archer Shee case. Parliament must necessarily act in order to assure justice.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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LIB

Louis Stephen St-Laurent (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)

Liberal

Mr. St. Laurent (Quebec East):

In view of the interventions of so many gentlemen on the other side, I think possibly the hon. member for Kamloops will feel that the suggestion he made the other day is not of

universal application. There seems to be one question about which it would be quite important to know what the facts are. It is suggested that the solicitor who has been giving information to the hon. member for Kamloops so that it might be used on the floor of the house has made an application to the supreme court of British Columbia for some kind of writ. I do not know whether or not that is a fact. I did not hear the radio reports this morning because I was still on a railway car. But if that is the case then though this may be the highest court of the land there is a positive rule that this highest court of the land has adopted and that is that matters sub judice before the ordinary courts of the land will not be debated here while they are before those courts.

When this is likened to other cases, it seems to me that the suggestion being made is that the department of immigration might be about to do something which was done by the Department of Justice presided over by Hon. Mr. Doherty in 1911 when Harry K. Thaw happened to be within the confines of this country and Mr. Doherty gave instructions, in spite of the proceedings that were before the court, to have him picked up like a chip and just tossed over the border. Nothing of that kind is contemplated here at this time.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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PC

John George Diefenbaker (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Diefenbaker:

There is not very much similarity between the Harry Thaw case and the present one.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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LIB

Louis Stephen St-Laurent (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)

Liberal

Mr. St. Laurent (Quebec East):

It has never appealed to this government to follow the effective but extraordinary procedures that were adopted in 1911. Proceedings have been taking place in the manner prescribed by the statute and there is the suggestion-and perhaps the hon. member for Kamloops would be in a position to say whether or not this is so-that the solicitor who has been briefing him about this extraordinary case was applying to the courts of justice in the province of British Columbia where I assume that, if there are rights, they can be asserted and will get consideration from the judicial authority in the hon. gentleman's own province.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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CCF

Major James William Coldwell

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

Mr. M. J. Coldwell (Roseiown-Biggar):

Mr. Speaker, may I point out that I think we are losing sight of what this resolution really asks. I refer to "the urgent necessity of suspending action in connection with the deportation of Mr. Hanna until his case has been fully considered and disposed of in accordance with proper and just procedures". We have before us no information as to what is happening in the supreme court of British

Columbia. However, we have before us information that this man is likely to be deported.

With regard to the matter of urgency may I say this, Mr. Speaker. The other day, when objection was taken to a motion that I made in this house, you were good enough to say that you would look into the matter because there was some doubt in your mind as to whether the debate on the address which is now proceeding ruled out the possibility of a debate on a matter of great urgency. I submit that this is a matter of urgency. I can understand the legal position of the department but I also understand that the final authority with regard to these cases rests with the minister. Here we are, as has already been said by the hon. member for Greenwood (Mr. Macdonnell), sitting here as it were as the high court of parliament, the last court of appeal. We do not know what is happening in British Columbia. We do not know whether the supreme court has allowed the case to be made before it. We know nothing of these things except the word given us by the hon. member for Kamloops. I think the hon. member for Kamloops has a. right to receive information on matters of any kind brought to him by anybody who approaches him with authentic information. I feel keenly and strongly that the minister and the government will make a serious mistake and will be looked upon as interfering with something touching human rights and fundamental freedoms if this debate is denied. Many members of the house have exhausted their right to speak in the debate on the speech from the throne and they may be vitally interested in speaking. I refer to such members as my friend the hon. member for Red Deer (Mr. Shaw). I suggest, Mr. Speaker, that this request is in order and that it should be allowed.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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LIB

Walter Edward Harris (Minister of Finance and Receiver General; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Liberal Party House Leader)

Liberal

Hon. W. E. Harris (Minisier of Finance):

Mr. Speaker, may I just add one word on the subject that the leader of the C.C.F. has mentioned, namely the attempt the other day to do what is being attempted today. I did not mention the matter at the time because of the answer which you gave to him. However, I want to stress what has always been the understanding of the house since I came here and, from what I can read, has been the understanding on all other occasions. On those occasions when we are in general debates, as on the address and the budget at least, if not others, and perhaps even motions to go into supply, if these particular items for discussion are before the house there is then an opportunity to debate any matter that any hon. member wishes to bring before the house. I admit that the question of

Immigration-C. G. Hanna relevancy sometimes enters into the matter with respect to a particular amendment. Nevertheless, I think it has been the ruling of every successive Speaker in this house that on those general occasions anything can be said by an hon. member and any particular matter can be debated. In other words, any person speaking this morning or this afternoon could advert to this subject and say what he wished with respect to what the government is doing. Since that is the case, I think the rule has always been interpreted in the matter of urgency with respect to a particular matter as a matter of urgency of debate. I am quite sure any member can take part this afternoon and speak on this subject. I feel that any other ruling by Your Honour, if I may say so with respect, would be almost a complete reversal of our previous understanding.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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PC

William Earl Rowe

Progressive Conservative

Hon. W. Earl Rowe (Dufferin-Simcoe):

Before your decision is rendered, I should like to make a few observations on the argument advanced by the Minister of Finance. I thought the argument advanced by the Prime Minister was flimsy, but the flimsiest argument of all has been that put up by the Minister of Finance. Never has a debate on the speech from the throne or a budget debate been interrupted more often by the government itself than in the last few years. As the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar (Mr. Cold-well) has said, a score of members on this side of the house had expressed their opinions on the speech from the throne before this matter arose. It is either a matter of urgency or it is not.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   C. G. HANNA MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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January 22, 1957