June 26, 1954 (22nd Parliament, 1st Session)


Walter Edward Harris (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Liberal Party House Leader)


Mr. Harris:

Mr. Chairman, it must be obvious to the committee that as soon as 1 made the announcement almost every Chinese citizen in Canada who had a son in China over the age of 21 and under 25 made application for his admission to Canada. And, of course, that is an exaggerated statement because they are still coming in. Nevertheless we were faced with all the applications which could be sent in as a result of that. We had some question in our minds as to what precisely we could do by way of definition. And we finally left the definition just precisely as I indicated, that each case would have to be dealt with on its merits, realizing of course that the decisions might not be correct in some cases but that on the average they would be acceptable.
Perhaps the committee would be interested to know the number who have come in under this grouping. There have been 23 of the age of 21; 19 aged 22; 7 aged 23; 6 aged 24 and 10 aged 25 in the month of May of this year only. That is a representative month. The total is 65 in this group.
Now, if it happened that a son was well established in China, so far as we could decide, and if the father here had other children either to look after his business or to look after him in his old age, that would be the type of case that would not meet the definition of hardship. If on the other hand the father happened to be the sole proprietor of a business, if he was getting on in years

and had a son abroad of that age who could come forward and assist him, that could be a case where hardship would intervene. We would consider it a case of hardship and grant the request.

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