August 15, 1958

STANDING ORDERS

CONCURRENCE IN THIRD REPORT OF STANDING COMMITTEE


Mr. J. W. Kucherepa (High Park) presented the third report of the standing committee on standing orders, and moved that the report be concurred in. Motion agreed to.


ADMINISTRATION OF JUSTICE

BRITISH COLUMBIA-ANNOUNCEMENT RESPECTING EMIGRATION OF DOUKHOBORS

PC

Edmund Davie Fulton (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. E. D. Fulton (Minister of Justice):

Mr. Speaker, I desire to make a statement in connection with the Doukhobor situation in British Columbia.

The government of Canada has been following closely the developments in the Kootenay area of British Columbia where, for many years, acts of violence, damage to property and disorder have been occurring. These occurrences have recently spread to other parts of the interior of British Columbia. The dominion government has shared the concern felt by all, and especially the citizens of British Columbia, over this situation.

While maintaining the view that the constitutional responsibility for the maintenance of law and order continues to be that of the province, the government of Canada has felt that the most recent series of outbreaks, especially, have demanded a readiness on its part to give sympathetic consideration to co-operating with the province in any specific request or proposal put forward by the province which offers real possibility of a solution of the problem.

In accordance with this spirit, representatives of the dominion government have recently participated in extensive negotiations with representatives of the government of British Columbia in connection with a particular suggestion advanced by the latter as a solution to the problem. This involves the suggestion that members of the Doukhobor sect associated with the sons of freedom, who have for many years insisted that they are in conscience unable to accept and

abide by the laws of this country, be assisted in their expressed desire to emigrate to Russia.

In the course of these discussions, and in keeping with the attitude outlined above, the dominion government indicated to the province its willingness to accept a generous share of the burden of implementing this proposal. As a result of these discussions, the following joint statement has been agreed to by the two governments. The text is as follows:

This statement is made by the governments of Canada and British Columbia jointly in the belief that certain members of the Doukhobor sect associated with the sons of freedom earnestly desire to leave Canada forever and is made for the purpose of establishing the intention of the two governments to co-operate so that those persons may carry out their desire.

Those desiring to take advantage of this offer will be required to declare their intention on or before the 30th day of September, 1958, and arrangements will be made to complete migration as soon as possible after this date. Those desiring to leave Canada should at once communicate with the office of the dominion director of citizenship and immigration in Vancouver or with the government agent at Grand Forks, Rossland or Nelson in the province of British Columbia.

The governments of Canada and British Columbia are agreed that upon being advised by the U.S.S.R. that the Soviet union will accept applying Douk-hobors of that sect as immigrants into that country:

(1) the governments will assist and co-operate with individuals, families and groups desiring to migrate, in the furnishing and securing of all necessary documents, visas and passports required for the purpose;

(2) the government of British Columbia will assist in restoring to their parents custody of their children for whom parents make application for the purpose of emigration from Canada;

(3) reasonable financial assistance will be provided (a) by the government of Canada to cover the cost of transportation to the U.S.S.R.; and (b) by the government of British Columbia to assist in the establishing of settlers in that country in an amount not to exceed transportation assistance and for a period subsequently to be determined;

but upon the condition that all such financial assistance will be made available only to persons renouncing Canadian citizenship;

(4) the government of British Columbia will assist, if asked, in the orderly realization of assets real or personal of migrating persons and will credit moneys thereby secured as directed by them.

The government of Canada will co-operate in arranging for and facilitating discussions between representatives of the Doukhobors and of the Soviet government in Canada regarding the arrangements to be made for admission to Russia of those desiring to migrate.

Those who do not within the time specified accept this offer to assist in migrating from Canada will be understood to desire to remain in Canada subject

3580 HOUSE OF

Doukhobor sect-Proposed Emigration to all laws, municipal, provincial or federal, governing Canadian citizens and privileged as heretofore to enjoy the rights and liberties of such citizenship.

That is the end of the joint statement. I may say that the text of this joint statement is also released this morning in Victoria at this time by the government of British Columbia.

Topic:   ADMINISTRATION OF JUSTICE
Subtopic:   BRITISH COLUMBIA-ANNOUNCEMENT RESPECTING EMIGRATION OF DOUKHOBORS
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LIB

Lester Bowles Pearson (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Liberal

Hon. L. B. Pearson (Leader of the Opposition):

I am sure the house will have listened with great interest to the statement of the minister on behalf of the federal government, and I can only say on behalf of the opposition that we hope this arrangement between the federal government and the government of British Columbia will work out satisfactorily and that these people will be able to find the tranquillity elsewhere which they apparently think they cannot find here in Canada.

Topic:   ADMINISTRATION OF JUSTICE
Subtopic:   BRITISH COLUMBIA-ANNOUNCEMENT RESPECTING EMIGRATION OF DOUKHOBORS
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CCF

Herbert Wilfred Herridge

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

Mr. H. W. Herridge (Kootenay West):

As

the member representing the constituency which is the focal point of the problem with which the minister has dealt, may I say that without a doubt the house has listened with great interest to the minister's unprecedented and unusual statement concerning the agreement between the federal government and the government of British Columbia to deal with an unusual situation and in response to a most unusual request. We in this group trust that co-operation between the federal government and the government of British Columbia will result in a final solution to this long-standing and most difficult problem to the satisfaction of all parties concerned.

We are glad the government of Canada has extended its co-operation to the government of British Columbia, and I compliment the minister for his patience, constructive approach and deep concern and interest in this question. I do urge both governments to enlist the co-operation of the district consultative committee, which is composed of representative citizens who have a great understanding of the situation, circumstances and other aspects of this problem.

Topic:   ADMINISTRATION OF JUSTICE
Subtopic:   BRITISH COLUMBIA-ANNOUNCEMENT RESPECTING EMIGRATION OF DOUKHOBORS
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INQUIRY AS TO POSITION OF MINOR CHILDREN


On the orders of the day:


CCF

Erhart Regier

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

Mr. Erhart Regier (Burnaby-Coquiilam):

Mr. Speaker, I should like to direct a question to the Minister of Justice. In the light of his announcement, what is going to be the position of the minors? The people I have in mind are boys and girls aged 18, 19 and 20 who may desire to remain in Canada. Will the voluntary movement apply there? In other

words, is there going to be any protection whereby those youngsters who wish to remain in Canada can remain, despite the wishes of their parents?

Topic:   INQUIRY AS TO POSITION OF MINOR CHILDREN
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PC

Edmund Davie Fulton (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. E. D. Fulton (Minister of Justice):

Mr. Speaker, that is a matter that would have to be the subject of careful negotiation and consideration. The desire is to have this movement entirely voluntary, as hon. members will appreciate, and it will have to be the duty of those administering the movement to ensure that this feature is maintained. At this stage and from this distance I do not think it is possible to make any forecast as to what would be the situation if a problem of that nature arose. It would depend upon the good will and judgment of those who are taking the applications for registration for the movement, but due regard will be taken of that problem in the administration of any program that may develop.

(Translation):

Topic:   INQUIRY AS TO POSITION OF MINOR CHILDREN
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STATEMENT ON ESTABLISHMENT OF TRUSTEES IN BANKRUPTCY


On the orders of the day:


PC

Edmund Davie Fulton (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. E. D. Fullon (Minister of Justice):

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the hon. member for Richelieu-Vercheres (Mr. Cardin) asked me if I had received any request for the appointment of a registrar and the establishment of a bankruptcy court in the judicial districts of Richelieu, Beauhamois, Iberville and St. Hyacinthe.

I find that representations have already been made in this respect. In fact I had received a letter from the hon. member for St. Hyacinthe-Bagot (Mr. Ricard), inquiring whether the request in question would be favourably received. Those representations, and that letter, were referred to the officials of my department who now have the matter under advisement. Consequently, my answer today must be the same as the one I already gave the hon. member for St. Hyacinthe-Bagot, that is to say: the matter is under consideration.

(Text):

Topic:   STATEMENT ON ESTABLISHMENT OF TRUSTEES IN BANKRUPTCY
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MARITIME COAL PRODUCTION ASSISTANCE ACT

AMENDMENTS VARYING TERMS OF REPAYMENT UNDER AGREEMENT

PC

Paul Comtois (Minister of Mines and Technical Surveys)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. Paul Comtois (Minister of Mines and Technical Surveys) moved

that the house go into committee at the next sitting to consider the following resolution, which has been recommended to the house by His Excellency: That it is expedient to introduce a measure to authorize certain amendments to the agreement made under the Maritime Coal Production Assistance Act with the Dominion Coal Company Limited,

for the purpose of varying the terms of repayment of principal and interest as provided under section 4 of the act.

Topic:   MARITIME COAL PRODUCTION ASSISTANCE ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENTS VARYING TERMS OF REPAYMENT UNDER AGREEMENT
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Motion agreed to.


DOMINION-PROVINCIAL RELATIONS NEWFOUNDLAND IMPLEMENTATION OF REPORT OF ROYAL COMMISSION ON REVISION OF TERMS OF UNION

August 15, 1958