Rt. Hon. Sir ROBERT L. BORDEN (Prim© Minister): The other Order in
Council which I desire to communicate to the House has relation to the recent unfortunate disturbances in the city of Quebec. It reads:
At the Government House at Ottawa.
Thursday the 4th day of April, 1918.
The Governor General in Council.
Whereas on the 28th day of March last the opposition of a large number of the population of the City of Quebec to the enforcement of the Military Service Act, 1917, and the regulations thereunder, broke out in open violence and serious riots ensued on that day and on subsequent days in which the rioters destroyed the office of the deputy registrar appointed for the District of Quebec under the said Act, and moreover caused great damage to other property, and threatened further damage, and it became necessary for the restoration of order, the protection of property and the preservation of the King's peace that these riots should be suppressed by military authority;
And whereas at common law it is the duty of a military officer with the troops under his command to interefere, when such interference is necessary, to put down riot, insurrection or civil disturbance;
And whereas it is provided by the Militia Act that the active militia of Canada may be called out on active service in aid of the civil power upon requisition of the civil authorities, and the King's regulations and Orders for the Militia contain certain directions for regulating the exercise of command and disposition of the troops upon such occasions ;
And whereas notwithstanding that it was necessary as aforesaid for the preservation of the peace and to repress rioting that resort should be had to military force the civil authorities of Quebec made no requisition for the
calling out of the Militia and the Officer Commanding therefore, acting manifestly in the general interest and for the protection of the public, and by direction of the Minister of Militia and Defence assumed the responsibility to command and direct the operations of the troops for the protection of life and property and the restoration of the peace ;
And whereas it is expedient that the legality of such intervention, and of the proceedings of the military authorities consequent thereon, should be declared and affirmed, as it is hereby intended to be, and that provision should be made for such further action by military force as may be necessary for the preservation of law and order in the existing circumstances, or in similar cases in the future if they should unfortunately occur;
And whereas for the reasons aforesaid it is expedient for the peace, order and good government of Canada that the effect and operation of law should be given to the provisions herein contained;
Now therefore His Excellency the Governor General of Canada, by and with the advice of the King's Privy Council for Canada, in the execution of the powers conferred upon him by the War Measures Act, 1914, is pleased to provide, order and enact, and it is hereby provided, ordered and enacted as follows:-
1. If, in the opinion of the General Officer or the Officer Commanding the Military District in which any riot, insurrection or civil disturbance takes place, the circumstances be such as to demand or justify the intervention of the military power, it shall be competent to and within the authority of the General Officer or the Officer Commanding the said military district to issue orders for such intervention to the troops on service or on active service under his command, and with such troops to use such force as he may determine to be reasonably necessary to quell and suppress such riot, insurrection or civil disturbance and to restore the peace, whether or not any requisition be made upon or order given to such Officer or to any military authority by any civil magistrate or civil authority ; and the provisions of this section shall extend to and authorize and make lawful the intervention operations and proceedings of the Officer Commanding the troops in Quebec and the officers and troops under his command in the circumstances herein recited to quell and suppress the riots and disturbances at the City of Quebec on and subsequent to the 28th day of March last and to restore peace and order there.
2. In the case of any riot, insurrection or civil disturbance which takes place while the Military Service Act, 1917, is in operation, if the General Officer or the Officer Commanding any military district of Canada, order any troops on service, or on active service under his command, to be called out for the maintenance of public order, or for preventing obstruction to the due enforcement of the Military Service Act, 1917, and the regulations thereunder, the Governor in Council, may, within the affected area which he shall by order designate, supersede, or supersede to such extent as he may specify, until his further order, the jurisdiction and powers of the civil courts, and declare that within the said area the orders of the General Officer or of the Officer Commanding the troops shall in all respects be obeyed by the civil population, and that offenders against the law.
or persons disobedient to such military orders, shall be tried and punished by courts-martial constituted in the manner hereinafter provided; and consequent upon any such order of the Governor in Council the provisions of the two next following paragraphs shall, until his further order, have effect:-
(a) All persons within the said area shall be subject to military law, and the civil tribunals shall continue to exercise within or in respect of the aforesaid area only such powers and jurisdiction as shall not have been superseded or suspended by the Governor in Council; and the General Officer or the Officer Commanding the troops may constitute court-martial for the purpose of trying any person who is charged with any offense against the law, or with disobedience to any military order, within the said area;
(b) The constitution, powers and procedure of any court-martial so constituted as aforesaid shall be the same as the constitution, powers and procedure of either a general or of a field .general court-martial; and any such court-martial shall have the .power, in addition to the ordinary powers possessed by a court so constituted, to impose any sentence which might be imposed in a like case by any civil court of the Province ; provided that a sentence imposed by any such court-martial shall not be executed until affirmed by the Governor in Council.
3. Notwithstanding anything contained in the Habeas Corpus Act, or in any other law or statute, and notwithstanding any right or remedy of habeas corpus or proceeding by way of habeas corpus, all persons in military custody within any area which shall have been designated as aforesaid, and all persons who may be captured, arrested or taken into military custody whether within or not within any such area during or in .consequence of any riot or insurrection, shall .be held, detained and remain in such custody without bail, inquiry or main-prise until released by direction of the Minister of Militia and Defence or delivered by his order to the civil authorities.
4. Any male person who takes part in any riot, insurrection or civil disturbance, incited, instigated or caused by way of opposition to the enforcement of the Military Service Act, 1917, or the regulations thereunder, shall if declared or found guilty of so doing by sentence of a court-martial or of a competent civil court, be deemed to have been called out for military service under the said Act, whether or not he be within any class of persons which has been called out for military service by proclamation, or within any class of persons to which the said Act or regulations apply, or within any of the exceptions of the schedule to the said Act; and he shall by reason of such offence forfeit any exemption or claim to exemption to which he would otherwise be entitled, and be liable forthwith to military service in all respects as if finally selected therefor and required to report for duty under the provisions of the said Act and regulations; provided that if any male person be captured, arrested or taken by military authority during the continuance of any such riot, insurrection or civil disturbance, while taking part or having taken part therein or while being present thereat to encourage, or assist the rioters, he shall be liable forthwith to such military service as aforesaid without any further or other warrant or proceeding than the certificate of an officer in command of the body of militia