January 13, 1958


On the orders of the day:


LIB

Wilfrid Lacroix

Liberal

Mr. Wilfrid LaCroix (Quebec-Monimo-rency):

Mr. Speaker, may I direct a question to the Prime Minister. In view of the declaration made by him on April 30, 1957, at which time he was leader of the opposition, at New Glasgow and on May 10, 1957 at Parry Sound, to the effect that if the majority of the 10 million tons of iron ore exported raw from Canada yearly were processed here it would help solve the problem of unemployment, my question is this. Is it true that the government has at last decided to fulfil that promise?

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   PROCESSING OF IRON ORE IN CANADA TO RELIEVE UNEMPLOYMENT
Permalink
PC

John George Diefenbaker (Prime Minister)

Progressive Conservative

Right Hon. J. G. Diefenbaker (Prime Minister):

Mr. Speaker, I appreciate my hon. friend looking back over the records, but that statement is one I never made at any time. Therefore I have no observations to make in that connection.

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   PROCESSING OF IRON ORE IN CANADA TO RELIEVE UNEMPLOYMENT
Permalink
?

Some hon. Members:

Oh, oh.

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   PROCESSING OF IRON ORE IN CANADA TO RELIEVE UNEMPLOYMENT
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LIB

Pierre Gauthier (Chief Opposition Whip; Whip of the Liberal Party)

Liberal

Mr. Gauthier (Portneuf):

Very funny.

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   PROCESSING OF IRON ORE IN CANADA TO RELIEVE UNEMPLOYMENT
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WINDSOR

CONSTRUCTION OF ACCESS ROADS, ETC., TO PROVIDE EMPLOYMENT


On the orders of the day:


LIB

Donald Ferguson Brown

Liberal

Mr. D. F. Brown (Essex West):

Mr. Speaker, may I direct a question to the Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources. Has the minister received a reply from the province of Ontario to his letter of January 2, 1958, requesting his co-operation in providing access roads to Point Pelee national park and a bridge over Sturgeon creek leading to that park, and for the establishment of a metropolitan camping park in the county of Essex, according to a policy announced by the minister on January 7, 1958, the acceptance of which project would, of course, greatly relieve unemployment in the Windsor area?

Topic:   WINDSOR
Subtopic:   CONSTRUCTION OF ACCESS ROADS, ETC., TO PROVIDE EMPLOYMENT
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PC

Francis Alvin George Hamilton (Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. Alvin Hamilton (Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources):

Mr. Speaker, I had intended to make an announcement on the order for motions regarding the replies from all the provinces on the two co-operative proposals I put forward on January 2, but in view of the momentous announcement which preceded mine I thought I would put it off until tomorrow.

In answer to the hon. member for Essex West, we have received a reply from the province of Ontario with regard to the question of access roads, and we understand from the official level that a reply will be coming through with regard to camp sites. I will

look into the hon. member's specific request and see if I cannot find out the details of this as soon as possible.

Topic:   WINDSOR
Subtopic:   CONSTRUCTION OF ACCESS ROADS, ETC., TO PROVIDE EMPLOYMENT
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CCF

Thomas Speakman Barnett

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

Mr. T. S. Barneli (Comox-Alberni):

A supplementary question, Mr. Speaker. Did I understand the minister to say that he would give us a statement on the reaction of the provincial governments to the proposals on camp sites? Has he a reply available today? Could he indicate which provinces have accepted?

Topic:   WINDSOR
Subtopic:   CONSTRUCTION OF ACCESS ROADS, ETC., TO PROVIDE EMPLOYMENT
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PC

Francis Alvin George Hamilton (Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hamilton (Qu'Appelle):

Yes, Mr. Speaker, I had it ready for today, but I thought under the circumstances it was too detailed to be brought up at this stage of the procedure on orders of the day.

Topic:   WINDSOR
Subtopic:   CONSTRUCTION OF ACCESS ROADS, ETC., TO PROVIDE EMPLOYMENT
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UNEMPLOYMENT

REQUEST FOR CURRENT


On the orders of the day:


?

Hon. Paul Marlin@Essex East

Mr. Speaker,

1 should like to ask the Minister of Labour whether he is in a position today to give us the latest figures of unplaced job applicants; and in that connection perhaps he can tell me whether or not it is correct, as reported this morning, that as of January 2 or January 3 there were 60,000 more unplaced applicants than there were on December 26, 1956, when the hon. gentleman reported a figure of 698,000?

Topic:   UNEMPLOYMENT
Subtopic:   REQUEST FOR CURRENT
Sub-subtopic:   STATISTICS
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PC

Michael Starr (Minister of Labour)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. Michael Starr (Minister of Labour):

Mr. Speaker, I have received the latest figures, which have not been published as yet; and since the hon. member has heard them on the radio I want to say that as of January

2 the national employment service registration-and I think that is the figure the hon. member refers to

is 754,640.

Topic:   UNEMPLOYMENT
Subtopic:   REQUEST FOR CURRENT
Sub-subtopic:   STATISTICS
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CCF

Alistair McLeod Stewart

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

Mr. Stewart (Winnipeg North):

Shame.

Topic:   UNEMPLOYMENT
Subtopic:   REQUEST FOR CURRENT
Sub-subtopic:   STATISTICS
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PC

Michael Starr (Minister of Labour)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Starr:

This compares with 698,153 for December 26. Compared with the previous week the present figure is an increase of 56,487. Without minimizing that figure whatsoever, it might be of interest to the house to learn that the rate of increase has levelled off for the first time since December 1, when the new seasonal benefit was put into effect.

The average weekly rate of increase since December 1 has been 65,900. This levelling off to 56,487 this week gives us reason to hope and indeed, Mr. Speaker, anticipate that the weekly rate of climb may be tapering off. I should also point out that the weekly increases this week are lower in Ontario, the prairie provinces and the Pacific region than the rate of increase in the same period of a year ago.

While I am on the subject, Mr. Speaker, and with the permission of the hon. member and

Inquiries of the Ministry of the house, I would like to clarify the national employment service figure. I would like to say, Mr. Speaker, that the national employment service figures are operational figures compiled for the convenience of the officials of the national employment service. They do not purport to be a figure for the number of persons unemployed in Canada. The only such figure is the dominion bureau of statistics figure for persons out of work and seeking jobs.

The national employment service figure is compiled at the close of business every Thursday in national employment service offices across Canada. The local offices are instructed to exclude certain classes of applicants. These figures include such persons as those already employed but seeking other work. They include persons seeking only part-time work. They include persons who register for another job in advance of actually becoming unemployed. Nevertheless, it still remains impossible to exclude from the figure all categories except those actually unemployed and looking for work.

For example, you get such categories as married women who have worked for a period and now wish to stay home and take care of their families, in other words, to obtain unemployment insurance into which they have paid for many years, in some instances. They make application. Until they are disqualified for refusing to take a job when it is offered to them, they collect and are on the rolls as registrations at national employment service offices. Unfortunately the unemployment insurance officials have never differentiated in their job application figures between married and single women. There is no way of knowing how many of these there are, unless by a special survey.

Another category might be a retired person who is collecting unemployment insurance. He is not particularly interested in working, but he wishes to collect his benefits. He applies for work and for anywhere from one week to three weeks he may be on the rolls. In the first place he is on the rolls because he has registered at the office. In the second place he is on the rolls for at least one week during the waiting period. In the third place he continues on the rolls as long as he does not turn down a reasonable job offer.

In many areas employment is predominantly seasonal. You may have farmers, fishermen and other individuals whose work pattern over many years has been to work in the summer and live during the winter from what they made during the summer. Many such people will apply for unemployment insurance. In doing so they will become job applicants. They will then go on the rolls

3242 HOUSE OF

Inquiries of the Ministry until they are found a job or until they are turned down for refusing to take a job.

In other cases an individual may apply for a job, may wait a couple of days or may even collect insurance for a week and then go out and find a job on his own. Yet unless he notifies the unemployment insurance commission, he is still listed as unemployed for as much as two weeks. These are some of the reasons why the unemployment insurance commission figure has never purported to be an unemployment figure. There is no doubt that the figure has been growing steadily. There is no doubt, too, that it is a useful indicator of unemployment, or at least of the labour situation in this country.

At this moment I might refer to a condition which I might term "administrative unemployment". It is a fact, and not a surprising one, that every time unemployment regulations are relaxed the national employment service registrations rise correspondingly. Last year the figures rose in January, as they always do when seasonal benefits come into force. This year seasonal benefits came into force on December 1. Therefore the rise was that much sooner. Since seasonal benefits have been extended to May 15 the rise can be expected to be maintained until that time. This year fishermen were eligible for seasonal benefits for the first time. Also, married women's regulations were revoked. All these contributed to swell the total registrations.

This is not to say that the national employment service figure does not indicate a great deal more activity in the field of persons looking for work, looking for claims and so on. It does. But these are some of the reasons why it cannot be considered an unemployment figure in the sense that the dominion bureau of statistics figure is an unemployment figure.

Topic:   UNEMPLOYMENT
Subtopic:   REQUEST FOR CURRENT
Sub-subtopic:   STATISTICS
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CCF

Stanley Howard Knowles

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

Mr. Stanley Knowles (Winnipeg North Centre):

Mr. Speaker, may I direct a question to the Minister of Labour supplementary to the statement he has just made. Has he under his hand the most recent figure as to those out of work and seeking employment, and also the corresponding figure for one year earlier? I take it these figures would not be subject to the qualifications which he attached to the figure as to those applying for unemployment insurance benefits?

Topic:   UNEMPLOYMENT
Subtopic:   REQUEST FOR CURRENT
Sub-subtopic:   STATISTICS
Permalink

January 13, 1958