William Warren ALLMAND

ALLMAND, The Hon. William Warren, P.C., O.C., Q.C., B.C.L., LL.D

Personal Data

Party
Liberal
Constituency
Notre-Dame-de-Grâce (Quebec)
Birth Date
September 19, 1932
Website
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warren_Allmand
PARLINFO
http://www.parl.gc.ca/parlinfo/Files/Parliamentarian.aspx?Item=62c8fd64-eb59-4bf9-b138-bd43854deedf&Language=E&Section=ALL
Profession
barrister and solicitor, lawyer

Parliamentary Career

November 8, 1965 - April 23, 1968
LIB
  Notre-Dame-de-Grâce (Quebec)
June 25, 1968 - September 1, 1972
LIB
  Notre-Dame-de-Grâce (Quebec)
October 30, 1972 - May 9, 1974
LIB
  Notre-Dame-de-Grâce (Quebec)
  • Solicitor General of Canada (November 27, 1972 - September 13, 1976)
July 8, 1974 - March 26, 1979
LIB
  Notre-Dame-de-Grâce (Quebec)
  • Solicitor General of Canada (November 27, 1972 - September 13, 1976)
  • Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development (September 14, 1976 - September 15, 1977)
  • Minister of Consumer and Corporate Affairs (September 16, 1977 - June 3, 1979)
May 22, 1979 - December 14, 1979
LIB
  Notre-Dame-de-Grâce (Quebec)
  • Minister of Consumer and Corporate Affairs (September 16, 1977 - June 3, 1979)
February 18, 1980 - July 9, 1984
LIB
  Notre-Dame-de-Grâce (Quebec)
September 4, 1984 - October 1, 1988
LIB
  Notre-Dame-de-Grâce--Lachine East (Quebec)
November 21, 1988 - September 8, 1993
LIB
  Notre-Dame-de-Grâce (Quebec)
October 25, 1993 - February 24, 1997
LIB
  Notre-Dame-de-Grâce (Quebec)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 830 of 831)


February 14, 1966

Mr. Warren Allmand (Nolre-Dame-de-Grace):

Mr. Speaker, this motion asks the federal government to issue a white paper putting forward policy regarding federal-provincial responsibility in certain areas, namely, (1) manpower development, (2) the war on poverty including assistance, welfare and family allowances and (3) corporations and other institutions in the credit business. The three general areas mentioned, or the six if we include the subheadings under "war on poverty", are not explicitly mentioned in the divisions of jurisdiction under our present constitution.

With respect to manpower, whatever may be its definition it is not mentioned at all in the constitution. "War on poverty" is a phrase coined in the United States and has reference there to a comprehensive program for social and economic opportunity. Its purpose has been the elimination of poverty rather than stopgap periodic assistance. Sections 92(7) and (13) of our constitution refer to charities, civil rights, etc. and these sections have been interpreted to include wider programs of welfare and social security, but no consideration to date has even been given to a program as broad as the U.S. war on poverty.

Sections 91(2), (15) (16) and (19) cover trade and commerce, banks and interest, and the trade and commerce section has been interpreted to include the incorporation of companies irrespective of objects which would include companies in the credit business.

The significant thing in all these areas is that they have aspects which could fall under both federal and provincial jurisdiction. This is a natural phenomenon. In our modern complex world, human creation and conduct

are not easily categorized and certainly are not easily fitted into jurisdictional slots conceived 100 years ago. There are a few problems and needs today which can be approached and dealt with adequately under any one area of legislative jurisdiction. As a result of this situation most federal states have resorted to what is known as co-operative or creative federalism. Several areas of government, federal, provincial and even municipal, get together to attack a problem which because of its many legislative aspects could not be attacked alone.

In a federal system this approach is much more efficient and beneficial than one where the different levels battle for jurisdiction in the courts and elsewhere, although sometimes this will be the last necessary resort. It must be remembered that a constitution is meant to serve the political, economic and social needs of the people and is not to be used in political power plays for the political aggrandizement of politicians.

In the Speech from the Throne we have two references to the manpower department. It says that the manpower department is to be a conversion of the Department of Citizenship and Immigration and that the government will develop manpower policies which are essential to the sustained growth of a highly productive economy and to the elimination of pockets of poverty. There is no direct use of the phrase "war on poverty" but job retraining and mobility, education and rural reform have all been described by this term.

[DOT] (6:20 p.m.)

It is doubtful that anyone could speculate as to all the possible legislation that might be enacted under a manpower or poverty administration. Some projects may be clearly federal, others provincial and others questionable. I can see no objection to the government issuing a white paper indicating the general jurisdictional bases for these matters and I think this would be good, but I think it would be impossible to set out with any finality the strict lines of constitutional jurisdiction that this motion demands, especially under our present constitution which in my opinion is extremely inadequate.

It seems to me that we do require a broad and deep study of federal-provincial jurisdiction and the whole role and purpose of federalism in Canada, but such a study should consider all areas of jurisdiction and should be done by a committee of this house

February 14, 1966

Dominion-Provincial Relations or by a royal commission rather than by a white paper. Such a committee or royal commission would be desirable before any wide-ranging constitutional amendment. It is to be noted that the province of Quebec has already established a similar commission.

While we are discussing problems of federalism and the concept of co-operative federalism, I should like to make a few observations regarding some of our recent federal difficulties. As a Quebecker whose principal language is English I consider these questions of utmost importance. My family has lived in Montreal for at least four generations and I consider it my home. I think it is a great and exciting city and I would not consider living anywhere else. However, in recent years there are some in Quebec who act and talk as if everything within the territory of Quebec, including Montreal, is for the benefit of and within the sovereignty of Quebec. In opposition to this view there are many who consider Montreal as much Canadian as it is Quebec. Most of the great economic and cultural institutions which helped build Montreal serve all Canada, not just Quebec. They were built by Canadians of all provinces to serve Canadians of all provinces. I refer to Montreal's port, its railroads, air lines, banks, universities, industries, hospitals and many other things.

These institutions and this city should belong to all Canadians both French and English. I realize this was not always the case in the past when our economic and cultural institutions were not only controlled by English Canadians but by certain established groups of English Canadians, to which my family did not belong, I may say. The solution to this situation, however, is not to transfer control from one nationalistic minority to another nationalistic minority. With this in mind many of us in Montreal are beginning to wonder whether the trend to increasing provincial jurisdiction in Quebec will not lead to injustice for its minorities and stifle the effectiveness of Canadian institutions which are situated in that province. It would seem to me that works and institutions which are interprovincial and which serve people beyond the boundaries of a province should be subject to federal jurisdiction, which does not mean English Canadian jurisdiction or a jurisdiction dominated by English Canada. There are several articles of the constitution which would support this view.

It has been rather disturbing in recent days to hear provincial governments state that they feel they have some sovereign right to share in economic and fiscal policy. These are the same governments which would become immediately disturbed if the federal government dared cross in the most minor way the boundaries of provincial jurisdiction. Sections 91(2), 91(3), 91(14), 91(15), 91(19) and 91(20) of the B.N.A Act clearly give the federal government sovereign authority in determining national economic and fiscal policy. This is not an area with several aspects which require co-operative federalism, although this is not to say that it could not be approached in that way. Until the constitution is amended it must be repected on both sides and, where the job requires, worked out co-operatively by both sides.

In an editorial appearing in Saturday's Le Devoir the editor, Claude Ryan, made the following statement in an article which was entitled:

The English speaking community in the Quebec of today.

At another place he said:

In private life, the last few years have revealed numerous situations in which the minority wields excessive power over the majority.

He says at another place:

The prime responsibility of the English speaking group is to open wide the doors of its institutions to the members and values of the majority, so that they might become, instead of ghettos of power, true expressions of the environment in which they exist.

Mr. Speaker, I agree fully with these statements but I would also suggest that this could be done without weakening the federal authority.

At another place when discussing the role of the English speaking Quebecker in the public life of Quebec Mr. Ryan referred to Mr. Kierans, the Quebec minister of health and welfare, and said:

Instead of considering himself as the "professional defender" of the rights of a small group, right from the start he asserted himself as a Quebec citizen and a Quebec politician. He espoused the over-all problem of the society in which he lives.

February 14, 1966

Once again I would agree with that statement, since Mr. Kierans was elected to the Quebec legislature. But members of parliament elected to the Canadian parliament, even from Quebec, are elected as Canadian citizens in a Canadian milieu to propose Canadian programs.

In concluding his article Mr. Ryan said:

In the difficult phase before us, we must avoid, on the one hand, panic action and, on the other, blackmail. Between those two extremes, men of good will are bound to find the right formula to get us all out of the vicious circle where we have been for many generations.

Again I agree fully with this high principle but I must make the comment that this must apply to Quebec and to the other provinces as well as to the federal government.

Topic:   PROCEEDINGS ON ADJOURNMENT MOTION
Subtopic:   SUBJECT MATTER OF QUESTIONS TO BE DEBATED UNDER ADJOURNMENT MOTION
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February 14, 1966

Mr. Warren Allmand (Notre-Dame-de Grace):

It was reported last Thursday that labour negotiations between the construction trades and contractors for the district of Montreal had broken down and that a strike was possible by April 10. It was also reported that this strike could extend to the workers on the site of Expo '67. In answer to a question it is reported that Mr. Pedette, a union representative stated:

[DOT] (10:00 p.m.)

We shall do everything to prevent the strike from spreading at Expo, replied Mr. Pedette, but nothing stops us from believing that union workers at Expo will not decide by themselves to follow suit.

Mr. Speaker, in view of the fact that the Canadian government has already invested millions of dollars in Expo, and in view of the fact that more than 70 countries have

DEBATES 1217

Proceedings on Adjournment Motion already committed themselves to participation, would the minister responsible for Expo or his parliamentary secretary kindly inform us of the following:

1. Is there in fact a special strike truce agreement for Expo?

2. If so, what are the provisions to guarantee this strike truce?

3. If the agreement is broken, are there any sanctions which could be applied to the offending parties?

Due to the fact that Expo is scheduled to open in little more than one year, I consider this situation to be extremely urgent and critical. If a strike was to delay Expo in any way, Canada would be left with a serious black mark against her in the world community.

tTranslation1

Topic:   PROCEEDINGS ON ADJOURNMENT MOTION
Subtopic:   SUBJECT MATTER OF QUESTIONS TO BE DEBATED UNDER ADJOURNMENT MOTION
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February 11, 1966

Mr. Warren Allmand (Nolre-Dame-de-Grace):

I rise as a lawyer, Mr. Speaker, and with all due respect to the hon. member for Kenora-Rainy River (Mr. Reid), I feel that if he reads his speech in Hansard tomorrow he will And it just as confusing as any conditional sales contract. It is notable that he has already felt it necessary to interpret his remarks to the other side.

Without discussing the constitutional validity of this bill I should like to say that I think it is good in principle but I do not think it goes far enough in protecting the consumer. There are many aspects of it which still leave the consumer open to the finance companies. I should like to deal with certain sections of the bill. Section 4 of the bill attempts to restrict the rate of interest to 10 per cent.

The hon. member for Kenora-Rainy River said that if a man wants credit and cannot get it because of his credit rating, he will attempt to get credit at a higher rate of interest than that permitted by this bill. If such a contract did provide for a higher rate of interest, the sanctions in this bill are set out in sections 5 and 6. Section 5 states that the agreement, as regards interest and the payment thereof, shall be void. Section 6

1128 COMMONS

Consumer Credit Control states that if any contract is made in violation of this agreement with regard to interest and the payment thereof, it shall be void.

I know that in the province of Quebec most conditional sales contracts contain a clause which allows the seller to retain full ownership until the last payment. They also allow the seller to revindicate the property, and the seller may keep all the instalments if there is any default in the payments. It would seem to me that if the sanctions that are set out in section 5 were applied the poor buyer would still stand to lose his property under the revindication clause, and all his instalments to date, by virtue of this clause.

It seems to me if this bill were to be truly effective, it should have contained in sections 5 and 6 a provision to the effect that not only the agreement with regard to interest should be considered void but that all parts of the contract that would favour the seller should be considered void. As I say, this is my principal objection to the bill. I do not think it does enough to protect the consumer, especially under a conditional sales contract as I know it in the province of Quebec.

[DOT] (5:40 p.m.)

With respect to the constitutional validity of such a bill in our civil code in the province of Quebec, we have complete sections dealing with instalment sales covering almost the entire subject matter here set out. I must admit that our civil code does not control the rate of interest in as strict a form as is suggested in this bill, but I am doubtful whether the bill would lie considered constitutionally valid. However, I approve of the principle it enunciates.

I should like the hon. member who has put the bill forward to advise us whether he has any comments to make on the loopholes I see in it.

[Translation1

Topic:   PROVISION FOR DISCLOSURE AND RESTRICTION OF INTEREST IN CONSUMER CREDIT
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February 10, 1966

Mr. Warren Allmand (Nofre-Dame-de-Grace):

Mr. Speaker, I wish to direct a question to the Minister of Trade and Commerce or in his absence to the minister's parliamentary secretary. There is a report in this morning's he Devoir that there are indications that there will be a strike in the construction industry in Montreal, which would also affect Expo '67. In view of the fact that I thought Expo was protected from strikes of this nature, would the minister please advise the house whether this report is correct?

Topic:   EXPO '67 MONTREAL-POSSIBLE STRIKE OF CONSTRUCTION WORKERS
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February 10, 1966

Mr. Allmand:

Could the minister tell us whether such a strike is possible?

Topic:   EXPO '67 MONTREAL-POSSIBLE STRIKE OF CONSTRUCTION WORKERS
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