No, I am not referring to boys; the company are putting on boys. The Canadian Pacific Railway Company state that their experience has shown that from the point of view of both adequate supply of labour and the competitive conditions with which they are faced in this service-they are competing with subsidized boats from Japan and the United States-it is neither practicable nor economically possible to adopt the policy asked for by my hon. friends. They made a further reply from which I give these extracts:
I can assure you that if it were practicable al)9 economically possible it would be the policy ot the company to comply with the request. However our experience has shown that from the standpoint both of an adequate supply of labour and of the competitive conditions with which the company is faced in this service it is neither practicable nor economically possible to adopt such a policy at present.
According to the report of the departmental representative of the Department of Trade and Commerce following the investigation made, there were only forty-five competent and suitable deckmen available in Vancouver and seventeen in Victoria, or a total of sixty-two.
The shipping master at Vancouver reported only yesterday-
This is 1937.
-that the situation regarding unemployed seamen is unchanged and that lie has practically no inquiries from seamen seeking employment. Ihe manager of the sailors' home states that there are fewer unemployed whom he describes as unemployable, and some boys who have had a few voyages on seasonal employment on coastal vessels, and some of them are finding employment in camps.
The whole gist of the matter is that from the point of view both of expense and of a sufficient supply of seamen the company does not feel that it can comply with the request. I would be glad myself if it were possible to employ all white men. At the same time I think most of these Chinamen who are employed on these boats are British subjects, coming mostly from Hongkong.
This question has come up from year to year. I do not know that I can add anything further. I think that by and large the attitude taken by the company is fairly reasonable.
Topic: DEPARTMENT OF TRADE AND COMMERCE