April 19, 1966

PUBLIC SERVICE

PROVISION FOR ESTABLISHMENT OF COLLECTIVE BARGAINING SYSTEM

LIB

Lester Bowles Pearson (Prime Minister)

Liberal

Right Hon. L. B. Pearson (Prime Minister) 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 provide for the establishment of a system of collective bargaining applicable to employees in the public service of Canada and for the resolution of disputes that may arise in the negotiation or conclusion of collective agreements applicable to such employees; to establish a process for the presentation of grievances of employees arising in connection with their employment and to establish a system for the adjudication of grievances of employees; to provide for the establishment of a board, to be known as the public service staff relations board, which shall be responsible for the administration of the said measure and to provide further for the constitution and appointment of such other authorities, offices and employees as are required in connection with the administration of the said measure.

Topic:   PUBLIC SERVICE
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR ESTABLISHMENT OF COLLECTIVE BARGAINING SYSTEM
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Motion agreed to.


CANADIAN LIVESTOCK FEED BOARD

PROVISION FOR ESTABLISHMENT, ADMINISTRATION, ETC.

LIB

George James McIlraith (Minister of Public Works; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Liberal Party House Leader)

Liberal

Hon. G. J. Mcllrailh (for Mr. Sauve) 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 establish a corporation, to be known as the Canadian livestock feed board, for the purpose of assisting livestock feeders in eastern Canada and British Columbia; to empower the board to make payments related to the cost of feed grain storage in eastern Canada and payments related to the cost of feed grain transportation to or for the benefit of livestock feeders in eastern Canada and British Columbia, to enter into arrangements for the purpose of ensuring the availability at reasonable prices of adequate supplies of feed grain for such livestock feeders, and when authorized by the governor in council to enter into direct marketing operations in feed grain; to provide for the administration of the said board and for the establishment of an advisory committee; and to provide that all expenditures in connection with the said measure, other than those related

to direct marketing operations, will be paid out of moneys appropriated by parliament therefor and that any expenditures related to direct marketing operations in feed grain will be paid out of the consolidated revenue fund and charged to an account to be known as the Canadian livestock feed board account, the amount of any such expenditure to be charged to the said account not to exceed the amount by which ten million dollars exceeds the balance of the said account.

Topic:   CANADIAN LIVESTOCK FEED BOARD
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR ESTABLISHMENT, ADMINISTRATION, ETC.
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Motion agreed to.


FINANCE

PROVISION FOR PAYMENT TO PROVINCES OF CERTAIN CORPORATION INCOME TAX

LIB

Mitchell William Sharp (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Hon. Mitchell Sharp (Minister of Finance) 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 payments to the provinces equal to 95 per cent of that part of the income tax paid under part I of the Income Tax Act by certain corporations in respect of income earned after 1965 that is attributable to the gross revenue of such corporations from the distribution and sale to the public in the province or the generation and sale in the province for distribution to the public of electrical energy or steam or from the distribution and sale of gas to the public in the province; and to provide that an amount paid under the said measure that is paid or otherwise credited by the province to such a corporation for the use of that corporation shall be exempt from income tax.

Topic:   FINANCE
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR PAYMENT TO PROVINCES OF CERTAIN CORPORATION INCOME TAX
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Motion agreed to.


CANADIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION

REPORTED CRISIS-MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26

PC

John George Diefenbaker (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Right Hon. J. G. Diefenbaker (Leader of the Opposilion):

Mr. Speaker, I move, seconded by the hon. member for Winnipeg South Centre (Mr. Churchill), as follows:

I ask leave to move the adjournment of this house in accordance with standing order No. 26, in order to discuss a matter of urgent public importance, namely the crisis of uncertainty and chaos in the affairs of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation culminating in the current dispute between management and the producers of the program "This Hour Has Seven Days"; and the reported admission by the Secretary of State that "the row over 'Seven Days' is an iceberg symptomatic of more fundamental problems within the corporation", and her reported acknowledgement that there is serious trouble within the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

April 19. 1966

Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

1 had a French translation of this motion, Mr. Speaker, but unfortunately it did not come down with me. As soon as it is available it will be sent to the various house leaders.

Topic:   CANADIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION
Subtopic:   REPORTED CRISIS-MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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LIB

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Speaker:

Perhaps the right hon. Leader of the Opposition would address the Chair on the particular urgency of debate in relation to this proposed motion. The Chair has noted the contents of the motion as moved by the right hon. Leader of the Opposition, and I suggest that either the right hon. gentleman or another member of the house might want to offer comments in connection with the urgency of debate.

[DOT] (2:40 p.m.)

Topic:   CANADIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION
Subtopic:   REPORTED CRISIS-MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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NDP

Thomas Clement (Tommy) Douglas

New Democratic Party

Mr. T. C. Douglas (Bumaby-Coquillam):

It

seems to me, Mr. Speaker, that this is a matter of urgent public importance and that there is every reason for Your Honour to allow the debate which has been proposed by the right hon. Leader of the Opposition.

I think this matter is urgent on three grounds. I think it is urgent, in the first place, because a statement ought to be made in the house today by the minister responsible for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in order to allay the fears and misunderstanding which are prevalent throughout the country with regard to the recent dismissal of the two co-hosts of the program "This Hour Has Seven Days".

The motion moved by the Leader of the Opposition contains a statement made by the Secretary of State to the effect that the dispute over the program "This Hour Has Seven Days" is only symptomatic of a much wider discord within the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. It seems to me most urgent that the House of Commons and the country should know what is the state of affairs within that organization. Certainly the statement made yesterday by Mr. Ouimet has done nothing to allay those fears. There is a contradiction contained in that statement. The chairman alluded to the fact that the producer of the program had mishandled controversial questions, but at the same time said that Mr. Leiterman, who is the producer, would continue with the program next season.

We have, therefore, the man who is responsible being retained on the program and the two co-hosts being removed from the program. This certainly indicates some breakdown in responsibility, and indicates that the

reasons which have been given for the dismissals are not the true reasons at all. The minister's statement, therefore, that there is a crisis boiling up within the C.B.C. would seem to be warranted. I think this house and the country have a right to know what is the situation.

The second ground for urgency is that there ought to be a debate in this house so the government can hear the views of the members regarding this whole question and refer it to the standing committee on broadcasting. Statements which have been made by those within the corporation, statements which have been made by those outside the corporation, and statements which have been made by Mr. Robert Fowler, who was the royal commissioner looking into this matter, all ought to be referred to the standing committee. I am told Mr. Fowler was to be interviewed on the program "This Hour Has Seven Days", and that this interview was quashed by the management. If this is true this matter ought to be settled, and ought to be settled immediately, by having this whole question referred to a committee.

The third and most important reason for urgency, Mr. Speaker, is the fact that there is a grave possibility of either mass resignations by producers and performers or a strike by some of those in important positions within the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Either of these propositions would do great harm to our national, publicly owned broadcasting system. All of us who believe in a national, publicly owned broadcasting system would be loath to see such a thing happen. If it could be prevented by having some arbitration machinery set up immediately to go into this question and prevent the loss of some very important and very capable staff, I think that should be acted upon immediately. I think it would be unwise for this house to sit here and allow the situation within the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation to deteriorate further. This is a most urgent matter which ought to be discussed, and it should be discussed today.

Topic:   CANADIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION
Subtopic:   REPORTED CRISIS-MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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LIB

George James McIlraith (Minister of Public Works; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Liberal Party House Leader)

Liberal

Hon. G. J. Mcllraiih (Minister of Public Works):

Mr. Speaker, the sole question before Your Honour for decision at the moment, as I see it, is the matter of urgency of debate. The hon. member who has just taken his seat indicated that there was certain information he wanted the house to have. The house has already taken action in the matter by referring the estimates relating to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation to the standing

April 19. 1966

committee on broadcasting on March 22, and I understand those estimates are now before that committee.

I know of no better way of obtaining the information which the hon. member asserts would be the proper concern of this house than by having the appropriate witnesses examined before that committee. There is no reason why that cannot be done today. If the hon. member wishes it to be done today, then that is a matter for the committee.

I do not know whether the hon. member has taken the usual steps to have that done, but the point I wish to make clear, Mr. Speaker, is this. You have been asked to set aside the ordinary business of the house for today, business which is also quite important, in order to permit debate of this matter in this house without hearing witnesses and without having available the information which the hon. member indicated was so important.

I suggest that his whole argument has indicated that the correct method to discuss this matter is through the committee which has been constituted and which has the matter before it. There is no reason to move a motion to withdraw the matter from the committee at this time. In other words, no case has been made for urgency of debate within the meaning of standing order 26.

Topic:   CANADIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION
Subtopic:   REPORTED CRISIS-MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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PC

John George Diefenbaker (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Right Hon. J. G. Diefenbaker (Leader of the Opposition):

Mr. Speaker, in so far as the urgency of this matter is concerned I am quite surprised at the attitude taken by the minister on behalf of the government. I do not think there has ever been a matter which in so short a time has brought about so much antagonism in all parts of Canada. Indeed, I understand that some 3,800 or more telegrams have been received by the C.B.C. in this connection. I personally have received a greater number than in respect of any other matter in the last couple of years. The question of urgency is apparent in view of an aroused public opinion and the need for parliament to look into this matter.

The hon. member for Burnaby-Coquitlam made mention of the reaction among C.B.C. employees in consequence of what they believe to have been arbitrary treatment on the part of management. He also mentioned the Fowler commission and the recommendations of that commission. My information, in view of those recommendations, is that because two officials connected with the "Seven Days" program, one in Ottawa and one in Toronto, gave their views to the Fowler commission,

Canadian Broadcasting Corporation these two gentlemen have been advised that their contracts are to be terminated because they have not left a good image of the C.B.C. or in any event that there are doubts about the statements they made before the Fowler commission on broadcasting, and therefore they have lost their right to be treated in the manner in which one would expect.

There cannot be anything more urgent than this. This is not a matter which can be shelved away, as I see it, by saying that some other institution or body can look after it. This is a matter concerning a great national body that incidentally was set up under a Conservative government, under Mr. Bennett. I want to make that clear. That body was to be an institution for the benefit of the Canadian people, not for the glorification of those in high positions.

[DOT] (2:50 p.m.)

The Canadian people contribute fabulous amounts of money to the corporation, through parliament. We have a right to expect that those sums shall be expended in a way that is in keeping with the responsibilities of that corporation.

I therefore say there is urgency, and I am amazed at the attitude of the government house leader in this regard. If the members of the government do not know there is urgency, then they have not opened their telegrams.

Topic:   CANADIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION
Subtopic:   REPORTED CRISIS-MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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RA

David Réal Caouette

Ralliement Créditiste

Mr. Real Caouelie (Villeneuve):

Mr. Speaker, the motion of the Leader of the Opposition suggesting it is urgent to discuss the action taken by the C.B.C. with regard to the program "This Hour Has Seven Days", hosted by Messrs. Patrick Watson and Laurier LaPierre, does not seem to me as urgent as the Leader of the Opposition would have us believe. I feel there are at present in Canada much more urgent matters than to determine whether the program "This Hour Has Seven Days" should continue to be hosted by Messrs. Watson and LaPierre.

Mind you, Mr. Speaker, I know personally Messrs. Watson and LaPierre. I admire a great deal those two Canadians who have performed a tremendous job at the C.B.C. in order to present the program "This Hour Has Seven Days" to the Canadian people.

We in parliament should keep in mind that, in the past, the hosts of many programs have changed in practically similar circumstances, and neither the Leader of the Opposition nor

April 19, 1966

Canadian Broadcasting Corporation anyone else objected because the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation was under a commission independent of parliament. In fact, the C.B.C. was not interfered with.

Mr. Speaker, there will always be an opportunity to discuss the Watson-LaPierre case, and others, before the committee on broadcasting, films and assistance to the arts, where all members are invited. When the estimates of the Department of the Secretary of State are before us we can bring up this question of the program "This Hour Has Seven Days" and establish the facts concerning Messrs. Watson and LaPierre.

Now, even if we were to discuss this matter today I do not think we could reach an immediate agreement. As I said a while ago, Mr. Speaker, I feel there are far more pressing things to be attended to.

During the last electoral campaign the government promised to wage war on poverty in Canada. That is a far more important matter than the situation in which Messrs. Watson and LaPierre find themselves at the present time. That is something far more urgent than the program "This Hour Has Seven Days".

Everybody appreciated the program, granted, but there are legislative measures to be introduced and studied here, in Ottawa, which are of far greater importance. And, at any rate, as I have already said, "This Hour Has Seven Days" can always be discussed when the estimates of the Secretary of State come up, or else before the appropriate committee.

Now, for my part, I do not believe in the need of adjourning the house to consider that specific case. The Secretary of State (Miss LaMarsh) stated that the row over that program is symptomatic of more fundamental problems within the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, and that the attention paid to it is an indication that there is serious trouble within the C.B.C. Everybody is convinced of that, even the Leader of the Opposition when he was Prime Minister of Canada. In fact, at that time he did nothing to correct what took place under his own administration.

Mr. Speaker, I fully agree with the Minister of Public Works (Mr. Mcllraith) that there is not so much urgency to debate this case, but that, on the other hand, there are much more capital issues to be discussed today, in the Ottawa Parliament, for the well-being of the population. The firing of two individuals because of political pressures

or other intrigues not specified in the newspapers is secondary.

Mr. Speaker, I suggest that the urgency is somewhere else than within the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation today.

Topic:   CANADIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION
Subtopic:   REPORTED CRISIS-MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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April 19, 1966