February 28, 1952



itousit of Commons! ®ebates!

Speaker: The Honourable W. Ross Macdonald Thursday, February 28, 1952


The parliament which had been prorogued on the twenty-ninth day of December, 1951, met this day at Ottawa for the dispatch of business. Mr. Speaker read a communication from the Governor General's Secretary, announcing that His Excellency the Governor General would proceed to the Senate chamber at three o'clock on this day, for the purpose of formally opening the session of the dominion parliament. A message was delivered by Major C. R. Lamoureux, Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod, as follows: Mr. Speaker, His Excellency the Governor General desires the immediate attendance of this honourable house in the chamber of the honourable the Senate. Accordingly, Mr. Speaker with the house went up to the Senate chamber. And the house being returned to the Commons chamber:



Elie Beauregard (Speaker of the Senate)


Mr. Speaker:

I have the honour to inform the house that during the recess I have received communications from several members notifying me that the following vacancies have occurred in the representation:

Of Hon. Gabriel Edouard Rinfret, member for the electoral district of Outremont-St. Jean, consequent upon his acceptance of an office of emolument under the crown.

Of Louis Orville Breithaupt, Esquire, member for the electoral district of Waterloo North, by resignation.

I accordingly issued my warrants to the chief electoral officer to make out new writs of election for the said electoral districts.



Carl Olof Nickle, Esquire, member for the electoral district of Calgary West, introduced by Mr. George A. Drew and Mr. D. S. Harkness.



Louis Stephen St-Laurent (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)


Right Hon. L. S. St. Laurent (Prime Minister) moved

for leave to introduce Bill No. 1, respecting the administration of oaths of office.

Motion agreed to and bill read the first time.




Elie Beauregard (Speaker of the Senate)


Mr. Speaker:

I have the honour to inform the house that when the house did attend His Excellency the Governor General this day in the Senate chamber, His Excellency was pleased to make a speech to both houses of parliament. To prevent mistakes I have obtained a copy, which is as follows:

Honourable Members of the Senate:

Members of the House of Commons:

I meet you at a time when the people of Canada, in common with the other peoples of the commonwealth, mourn the loss of our late sovereign, King George VI. His late Majesty was greatly loved by all his subjects in Canada who have vivid recollections of his visit to this country and of his many associations with his Canadian people. In no part of the commonwealth has the sense of personal loss been more deeply felt than in our country. I join with you in extending deepest sympathy in their bereavement to Her Majesty the Queen, to Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, to Queen Mary, to Princess Margaret and all the members of the royal family.

The people of Canada have already had an opportunity of meeting their new sovereign. In the course of her visit to our country a few months ago Her Majesty made a deep and lasting impression on her Canadian subjects. As the queen assumes her heavy responsibilities she is assured of the loyalty and devotion of the Canadian people in full measure.

Speech from the Throne

I am deeply sensible of the great honour of having been appointed by His late Majesty as his personal representative in my native land. As I take up my duties as the representative of the queen, I assure you of the pleasure with which I look forward to our association in parliament and I deem it a privilege to be connected with you in your labours for the welfare and happiness of the Canadian people.

The situation throughout the world continues to cause concern and to require my ministers to devote a great deal of attention to our external affairs. The government remains convinced that the nations of the free world must continue to increase their combined strength, in order to ensure lasting peace and security by the effective discouragement of aggression.

In Korea it has not yet been possible to bring about an armistice, but negotiations with this end in view are still going on. Canadian forces together with their comrades from other of the United Nations are giving distinguished service in that unhappy land.

A formation from the Canadian Army now forms an effective part of the integrated force of the North Atlantic alliance in Europe and further elements of the Royal Canadian Air Force are progressively being dispatched overseas. Amendments to legislation relating to our armed forces will be submitted for your approval.

Your approval will also be soqght for a further Canadian contribution to the Colombo plan and for technical assistance to underdeveloped areas.

A Japanese peace treaty has been signed and will be submitted for your consideration.

At home our economy remains very buoyant. External trade and capital investment have reached record levels. Generally speaking employment remains at a high level. Inflationary pressures are still being strongly felt and require the maintenance of anti-inflationary measures.

Unfortunately foot-and-mouth disease has appeared in cattle in a small area in Saskatchewan. Immediate steps have been taken to limit the affected area, eradicate the disease and meet the situation resulting from the embargo under United States law on exports of livestock and meat to that country.

A board of engineers has been established to prepare an application for submission to the international joint commission concerning the development of hydroelectric power in the international section of the St. Lawrence river.

As a measure designed to assist in the development of our natural resources you will be asked to consider legislation to enable the Canadian National Railways to construct a branch line between Terrace and Kitimat in British Columbia.

You will be asked to consider legislation to amend the War Veterans Allowance Act, 1946, and the Veterans Benefit Act, 1951.

A bill to revise the Immigration Act will be placed before you. If that bill can be finally dealt with during the present session, related amendments to the Canadian Citizenship Act will be submitted.

You will be asked to approve a bill to authorize the federal government to enter into new tax rental agreements with the provinces.

You will be invited to consider a measure to provide for the readjustment of representation in the House of Commons.

You will be asked to consider a complete revision of the Criminal Code prepared by a commission which has been engaged on this project for the past three years.

A bill will be introduced to authorize certain preparatory steps in connection with the establishment of a national library.

A bill will also be presented respecting trademarks.

Other measures to be introduced will be amendments to the Food and Drugs Act; the Canada Grain Act; the Cold Storage Act; the Canadian Farm Loan Act; the Civil Service Superannuation Act; the Currency Act; the Canada Shipping Act; the Northwest Territories Act; the Aeronautics Act; the Radio Act; the Government Employees Compensation Act, 1947, and the Unemployment Insurance Act, 1940.

Members of the House of Commons:

You will be asked to make provision for all essential services, and for national defence and the meeting of our obligations under the United Nations charter and the North Atlantic treaty, for the next fiscal year.

Honourable Members of the Senate:

Members of the House of Commons:

May Divine Providence bless your deliberations.




Louis Stephen St-Laurent (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)


Right Hon. L. S. St. Laurent (Prime Minister) moved:

That the speech of His Excellency the Governor General to both houses of parliament be taken into consideration on Friday next, and that this order have precedence over all other business, unless and until otherwise ordered, except introduction of bills and government notices of motions, until disposed of.


Motion agreed to.




Louis Stephen St-Laurent (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)


Right Hon. L. S. St. Laurent (Prime Minister):

Mr. Speaker, I rise at this time

to propose two motions which my hon. friend, the leader of the opposition (Mr. Drew), has kindly consented to second. Perhaps it would suit the convenience of the house if, so far as the speeches that are to be made on these motions are concerned, both motions were dealt with together.

When they awoke on the morning of February 6, all Canadians were profoundly shocked to learn that their king was dead. We knew how precarious His Majesty's health bad been, and for some months we had all been very anxious. Then gradually this feeling of anxiety had given way to gratification at what seemed to be a steady recovery from his illness. But now King George VI is no more.

It is our first duty and our sad privilege to extend to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II our profound sorrow at the bereavement she has sustained and to express our loyalty and allegiance to her. Our heartfelt sympathy also goes out to Their Majesties the Queen

Mother and Queen Mary, to Princess Margaret and to all the other members of the royal family.

Canada mourns the loss of a great king and a good man. And we are not alone in our sorrow. Throughout the commonwealth, and indeed everywhere in the free world, King George VI was held in the highest esteem and affection. It is not hard to discern why this was so.

He had not expected to be called to rule over the British commonwealth of nations, and he succeeded to the throne in circumstances which were without precedent and must have been personally distressing to him as, indeed, they were to many of his subjects. I suppose he had hoped that, while he would have many duties as the brother of the reigning monarch, he would be able to lead, out of the limelight, a relatively quiet but useful family life. This was not to be. But to his everlasting glory King George VI responded to this call of duty in a manner we can all be proud of, and for which, I think I may add, we can all be thankful.

His reign coincided with one of the most turbulent periods in history; a period of depression, war, distress, fear and uneasiness. Yet throughout it all he remained calm and held firm to his faith in freedom and his belief in human progress. One has only to read the speeches he made each Christmas to get a clear conception of the ideals of this good man.

As we remember him today, and we will remember him for many years to come, we think of his sense of duty; of his great courage; of his example as a husband and a father; of his kindness and his concern for the welfare of his subjects everywhere. He was specially interested in the future of his younger subjects. It will be remembered that on May 24, 1939, King George VI spoke from Winnipeg over the radio to the peoples of the commonwealth everywhere. In concluding he addressed a word to those of his listeners who were young. He said:

Life is a great adventure, and every one of you can be a pioneer, blazing by thought and service a trail to better things. Hold fast to all that is just and of good report in the heritage which your fathers have left to you, but strive also to improve and equalize that heritage for all men and women in the years to come. Remember, too, that the key to all true progress lies in faith, hope, and love.

The late king himself did "hold fast to all that is just and of good report", but he also believed in the future.

Canadians have never forgotten the visit of the late king and his queen to our country in 1939. Those who were in this house at that time will remember meeting him and


The late King George VI hearing him speak and give his assent to legislation which had been passed by our two houses of parliament. Across our land, hundreds of thousands of Canadians were able to see and acclaim their monarch for the first time. Canadians will remember, too, the many associations the king established with our armed forces during the war.

These experiences, and many more besides, have greatly strengthened the attachment of the Canadian people to the crown.

The crown is, of course, the constitutional link between the members of the commonwealth. And it is more than that; it is also the symbol of unity in each of the nations of the commonwealth. It is in the name of the king-now of the queen-that we discharge in Canada the responsibilities of government.

We have, in our commonwealth nations, a system of government as free as any on earth; in our parliaments and in public debate we place few limits on differences of party; but happily in this house and, indeed, in this country, all political parties worthy of the description are as one in their devotion to the crown and in their attachment to the commonwealth.

As Mr. Churchill reminded us in his broadcast the day after the king died, it is vital that "the occupant of the throne should be equal to the august and indefinable responsibilities which this supreme office requires."

We remember with gratitude how fittingly the king we mourn today bore those responsibilities. And throughout his reign, indeed through his whole married life, we know how well he was supported and sustained by his dear wife. Our heartfelt sympathy goes out to the Queen Mother, who shared so fully the life of our late king.

Hon. members will notice that the second of the two motions which the leader of the opposition and I are sponsoring today is in terms identical with the message of condolence to the Queen Mother when the late King George V died a little over sixteen years ago.

I am sure that Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother will be gratified to know that the members of the Canadian House of Commons think of our late king as the worthy son of a worthy father and have for her the same admiration, the same sympathy and the same affection they expressed to her illustrious predecessor, Queen Mary, sixteen years ago.

And we now hail our new monarch, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

The late King George VI We all recall the happy time she and her husband spent among us only a few months ago, and we know how much she endeared herself to her Canadian subjects. Though young in years, Her Majesty is qualified to follow in the footsteps of her illustrious father. And she is well aware of her many responsibilities.

In addressing her privy council in the United Kingdom for the first time she declared-and these are Her Majesty's words: I shall always work as my father did throughout his reign to uphold constitutional government and to advance the happiness and prosperity of my peoples.

There could be no better example and no worthier pledge. Hon. members, I know, will agree that the crown rests upon a head which will bring to it further honour and glory. Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, like her father, comes to the throne at a most difficult and trying period in world history. As she assumes her great responsibilities I know I speak for all members of the House of Commons in Canada in expressing our earnest desire to uphold and support her in the task which has been laid upon her.

I now beg leave to move, seconded by the leader of the opposition, that a humble address be presented to Her Majesty the Queen in the following words:

To the Queen's Most Excellent Majesty:

Most Gracious Sovereign:

We, Your Majesty's dutiful and loyal subjects, the Commons of Canada, in parliament assembled, respectfully desire to express our deep sympathy to Your Majesty in the great loss you have sustained by the death of the late king, Your Majesty's beloved father.

Your Majesty's sorrow and that of the royal family is shared in a personal way by the people of Canada, whose representatives we are. King George VI was a great king and a good man. By his devotion to duty, his high courage, his example as a husband and a father, and his concern for the welfare of those he ruled, he greatly endeared himself to his Canadian subjects. We will not forget the occasion when, accompanied by your beloved mother, he visited our country, nor will Canadians forget the many happy associations established in the course of his reign over us. In common with all the peoples of the commonwealth, we shall ever deeply cherish his memory.

We welcome Your Majesty's accession to the throne, and we desire to convey to you a sincere expression of our loyalty and devotion. When Your Majesty, accompanied by your husband, visited us a few months ago, you left a deep and lasting impression upon the Canadian people. We are convinced that Your Majesty will ever seek to promote the happiness and well-being of all your subjects. As members of the parliament of Canada it is our desire and determination to uphold and support Your Majesty, to the utmost of our authority and wisdom; and it is our prayer that Divine Providence will sustain Your Majesty in the discharge of your heavy responsibilities.

I also move, seconded by Mr. Drew, that the following message of condolence be sent to Her Majesty the Queen Mother:

Your Gracious Majesty:

We, the Commons of Canada, in parliament assembled, respectfully beg leave to tender to Your Majesty our heartfelt sympathy in your great sorrow and bereavement. We share Your Majesty's grief and loss in the passing of our late sovereign, King George VI, who was greatly beloved by all his subjects.

We pray that, at this time, Your Majesty may be comforted and sustained by the remembrance of what your loving companionship meant to the late king throughout his life and reign; by memories of service shared; and by the sympathy and love that everywhere surrounds Your Majesty in your great sorrow.


Mr. Speaker, it is not my intention to repeat in the other official language of our parliament what I have just said in English; however, I believe it is fitting that I should repeat in French the terms of the two addresses which the leader of the opposition (Mr. Drew) and I are submitting to our colleagues for adoption, because, in my opinion, they truly express the feelings of all Canadians whom we represent in this house, whatever be the language usually spoken in their respective homes. The addresses read as follows:


A Sa Tres Excellente Majeste la Reine:

Tres Gracieuse Souveraine,

Nous, fideles et loyaux sujets de Votre Majeste, les Communes du Canada, en Parlement assembles, desirons respectueusement exprimer a Votre Majeste notre profonde sympathie dans l'affliction que vous a causee la disparition du feu Roi, Pere bien-aime de Votre Majeste.

Les Canadiens, dont nous sommes les represen-tants, partagent personnellement le deuil de Votre Majeste et de la Famille royale. Le Roi George VI a ete un grand roi et un homme de bien. Par Sa fidelite au devoir, Son courage marque, l'exemple qu'Il a donne comme epoux et comme pere, l'in-teret qu'Il portait au bien-etre de ceux sur lesquels II regnait, II s'est rendu tres cher a Ses sujets canadiens. Nous n'oublierons pas la visite qu'11 a faite en notre pays en compagnie de Votre Mere bien-aimde; les Canadiens n'oublieront pas non plus les liens heureux et nombreux etablis durant la periode ou II a r6gne sur nous. En communion avec toutes les parties du Commonwealth, nous cherissons a jamais et profondement Sa memoire.

Nous accueillons avec joie l'accession de Votre Majeste au Trone et nous desirons Vous exprimer sincerement notre loyaute et notre devouement. Lorsque, accompagnee de Votre Epoux, Vous avez visite notre pays, il y a quelques mois, Vous avez produit sur le peuple canadien une impression profonde et durable. Nous sommes certains que Votre Majeste s'efforcera toujours de favoriser le bonheur et le bien-etre de tous Ses sujets. A titre de membres du Parlement du Canada, nous avons le desir et la determination de soutenir et d'ap-puyer Votre Majeste dans toute la mesure de notre autorite et de nos capacites, et nous prions la Divine Providence de Vous assister dans l'exercice de Vos lourdes responsabilites.


Now, here is the message of condolence to the Queen Mother:


Gracieuse Majeste,

Nous, les Communes du Canada, en Parlement assembles, demandons respectueusement la permission d'offrir a Votre Majeste notre sincere sympathy dans Votre grand deuil et Votre profond chagrin. Nous partageons la douleur et la perte que Votre Majeste eprouve de la disparition de Notre Souverain defunt, le Roi George VI, qui etait grandement aime de tous Ses sujets.

Nous formons des vceux pour que, en ce moment, Votre Majeste soit reconfortee et soutenue par ie souvenir de ce que Votre aitectueuse compagnie a valu au defunt Roi pendant toute la duree de Sa vie et de Son regne; par la memoire des services partages; par la sympathie et par l'affection gene-rales qui entourent Votre Majeste dans Votre grande affliction.


February 28, 1952