May 24, 1950 (21st Parliament, 2nd Session)

PC

Donald Methuen Fleming

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Fleming:

The words of the minister are most encouraging. I tried to start last night and to be very brief about it, and I tried to get on earlier today and to be very brief about it.
Sir, the question I raise is whether the postal authorities can distinguish between one kind of illegal act and another. The Post Office Act draws a clear distinction between the different kinds of illegal acts. The language of section 7 (d) reads in this way. The Postmaster General has certain powers in these words:
. . . and for marking on the covering of letters, circulars or other mailable matter suspected to concern

Postal Service
illegal lotteries, so-called gift concerts, or other illegal enterprises of like character, offering prizes, or concerning schemes devised or intended to deceive or defraud the public, for the purpose of obtaining money under false pretences,' whether such letters, circulars or other mailable matter are addressed to or received by mail from places within or without Canada . . .
It may be one thing to suspect brokers of intention to defraud; but there is not the slightest evidence in this case, nor can there be the slightest suspicion, that those to whom the use of the mails has been banned here had any intention whatever of deceiving or defrauding the public. Regulation 204, passed under that act, is in the same language. The reference to illegal lotteries is confined, sir, to those in the language used, "concerning schemes devised or intended to deceive or defraud the public, for the purpose of obtaining money under false pretences." There can be no suggestion whatsoever that there was anything of that kind involved here. There are courts to deal with illegal lotteries. The police and the courts in the Toronto area and in Leaside are quite competent to deal with this matter without having arbitrary intervention on the part of the postal authorities in an arbitrary abuse of power. I say this sort of thing must stop.
Motion (Mr. Fournier, Hull) agreed to, and the house went into committee, Mr. Beaudoin in the chair.

Topic:   POST OFFICE
Subtopic:   DENIAL OF THE USE OF MAILS
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