Mr. F. G. J. Hahn (New Westminster):
Mr. Speaker, we in this group have in past years made it a practice to speak on each of the bills which have been introduced in the house to let the nation know what our point of view might be in respect of those matters. In this instance we are still of the same opinion that we have been in past years, namely that we support the bill proposed by the hon. member for Winnipeg North Centre (Mr. Knowles) for the voluntary revocable checkoff of union dues. Our reasons, of course, are that we believe in the principle of the bill; that it is sound to deduct trade union dues in this particular way.
There is one observation I do have to make, in respect of the legislation proposed in this instance, to my hon. friend and to the house as a whole. There have been many occasions when the hon. gentleman has introduced certain bits of legislation as private bills and, on many occasions, the house has seen fit to talk out the legislation.
We have heard certain members on the government side and others indicate that they are in favour of such legislation. It is high time, Mr. Speaker, that we accepted our responsibilities as parliamentarians and decided that this is private members' hour or private members' day, as the case might be. Having accepted our responsibility for bringing in legislation and promoting it in this way, we should then decide whether we want such legislation or not. It should be accepted on its merits. If we are going to continually make it a practice to talk out proposed legislation, then there is no object in a private member ever introducing a bill in the house for consideration.
If the government members who have so frequently expressed themselves as being in sympathy with this legislation will continue to support it we will hope finally to see it become law at some time, or at least have the opportunity of becoming law.
I, too, am very pleased, as was the hon. member for Winnipeg North Centre, to discover that our Liberal friends are making a move toward accepting this kind of legislation. It is my hope that they will vote for it. I have a greater hope, however, and that is that the government will allow it to come to a vote during the hour allocated to private members.
Topic: INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS
Subtopic: AMENDMENT OF CHAPTER 152, REVISED STATUTES OF 1952 VOLUNTARY REVOCABLE CHECK- OFF OF UNION DUES