Mr. George A. Drew (Leader of the Opposition):
Mr. Speaker, because of the order of business to be followed today I would ask you to permit me to direct a question to the government which I believe is of particular concern to hon. members who live some distance away from Ottawa.
Several days ago a question was directed to the Prime Minister (Mr. St. Laurent) as to the date on which it is intended that the house shall rise for the Easter recess. At that time the Prime Minister indicated he would give instructions that the whips of the parties be brought together for the purpose of discussing the matter. Time is passing. It is obviously a matter of great importance to all members to be able to make their arrangements for the Easter holidays and secure the necessary travel reservations. Good Friday is only two weeks from next Friday, and the time is short within which members can make reservations. No matter what the length of the recess may be, I suggest to the government that this is a fairly obvious consideration which should be borne in mind.
Unless there are any matters of overriding urgency, I am sure that members would prefer to spend holy week in their own homes, because it is a week which is of great importance to most of them. Therefore I would ask the government to give an indication as to the date on which the house will rise for the Easter recess. No steps have been taken to bring the whips together; obviously, therefore, it becomes a matter for decision by the government.