April 4, 1938 (18th Parliament, 3rd Session)


James Shaver Woodsworth

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


I hear hon. members to my left in the social credit group agreeing with that. This is one instance in which I think new money might be issued to advantage. It would not bring about inflation, so far as I can determine, and so far as I can learn from consultation with people who know more than I do about financial matters. We have taken such action before in this house, and there is no reason why we cannot do so again. A program of that kind could be carried out without constitutional changes. That is one practical suggestion I would offer.
I quite agree with the minister that we must have a broad and comprehensive program. No one measure will accomplish the complete results. I have mentioned housing because in Canada there have been the strongest representations urging the necessity of a housing scheme. On the other hand, we still have a vast amount of unemployment which, at least in part, could be taken care of by a scheme of this kind. In turn, as the minister has pointed out, it would stimulate general activity across the country.
In closing, I wish to emphasize that, after reading patiently the report, and listening to the minister, it does seem to me that we have been given nothing which would seem to bring about any immediate solution of this pressing problem-certainly nothing that would meet the needs of the people who have been suffering throughout these years.
The minister talked about improved morale; but I can take him to the welfare agencies in this city, or, indeed of any of our cities, and the welfare workers will tell him that to-day morale is at a very low ebb. I suggest that the sums which might be involved in carrying out extensive employment schemes are very small, compared with the good which might be accomplished in the national interest of Canada.

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