Mr. Chairman, I have
already explained what is provided by regulations in this regard, and I can assure the house that no postal employee will be prevented by his work from attending religious services. Again I say that never has the Civil Service Commission authorized, as the hon. member contends, that a period of 45 minutes be taken off the eight working hours of an employee to enable him to attend religious services.
There has always been a rule, at least so I am told, whereby the employees could take that time off, but it was not to be taken off their eight hour day, and that is the rule applying to all postal employees, as well as to those of every other federal department from coast to coast.
I have insisted that this regulation be observed in Montreal and that each employee should have the opportunity of attending religious services if he so wishes, under the circumstances I have mentioned. Since such regulation is established by the civil service commission, I do not have the authority to establish the so-called tradition, to which the hon. member referred a moment ago, but I certainly have the authority to see that the regulation as established is observed. That, I have done.