December 18, 1957

?

Mr. Yvon@

Mr. Speaker, I would not want to miss this opportunity of taking part in the discussion about the National Housing Act of 1954. I represent, as I have said, a growing constituency which avails itself of the housing act administered by the C.M.H.C., another masterpiece of the Liberal regime. My constituency is not far from Montreal, the metropolis, and many people who have jobs in Montreal reside in these outskirts, thus enjoying the benefits of rural life on the south shore.

Several municipalities of my constituency have spent money and developed an overall plan under which public services such as

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sewers, water distribution, sidewalks, streets, etc. were provided in order to promote house building and qualify for loans under the National Housing Act. If the municipalities make sacrifices, it would seem that this legislation could be improved, particularly by lowering from 2 to 1 per cent the rate charged by the government to insure these loans. Since 1954, the government has accumulated, from this source, a profit of several million dollars. I realize that this insurance premium seemed warranted at first, but I do not think it was the intention of the government of the day to have this corporation accumulate profits at the expense of home buyers.

Experience has been favourable. The corporation has had to take back only one unit of all houses bought under this marvelous legislation, and then sold it at a profit. It would be good now to lower this rate and to have the small house owner benefit by saving the substantial amount of $125 or $150 a unit. As to those accumulated millions, the government could use them to buy off, at pro rata, the loans granted by finance companies, which would allow them to reinvest in new loans. Another suggestion which seems very appropriate would be to reduce the interest rate of 6 per cent to 5 per cent, as is being done in the United States. An interest rate of 6 per cent is prohibitive, and of no benefit either to the owner or the buyer.

It is easier for the government to borrow than it is for loan companies or institutions. It can, at no cost to itself, afford a rebate of $1,000 to $1,200 in interest over a period of 25 years, in favour of the worker or wage earner who seeks to improve his standard of living. In fact, if the government can afford to loan money without interest to western farmers, and loan several million dollars at 4 per cent interest to the Hamilton Harbour Commission, $30 million to the government of New Brunswick, etc., why should it not be able to provide loans at a reasonable interest to house buyers?

The down payment should also be lowered so that not more than $700 or $800 on a $12,000 or $13,000 house should be required, especially so when many municipalities went out of their way to provide public services to help prospective house owners. When the down payment is too high, it becomes prohibitive for workers with a family, particularly for young married couples who have a house to furnish, and other contingent expenses.

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We must put our trust in these young people who represent the future of our country. There is no greater satisfaction for a human being, whatever his status in life, than to own his home and be able to provide adequate housing for his family. I therefore urge the government to consider these suggestions with a realistic and unbiased mind. The government should not forget the promises made during the last election. This is the time to show that they meant what they said, for in a few months it will be too late.

As the price of the lot is an important factor in the cost of a house, I appeal to the government to take whatever steps are necessary to put a stop to the shameless practices of exploiters who take advantage of our farmers' good faith, take up options on farm property, make the farmer sign unfair contracts, and then resell those lands at fancy prices, which only increases the cost of houses at the expense of the buyer.

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CCF

Douglas Mason Fisher

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. D. M. Fisher (Port Arthur):

Mr. Speaker, on page 550 of Hansard for October 29, 1957, the parliamentary assistant to the Minister of Public Works informed us that of the 17,560 housing loans arranged from June to July of this year, 14,616 or 83.23 per cent went to centres with populations, of over 5,000 people. Over 7 million Canadian people, that is about 45 per cent of our population, live either in rural areas or in towns smaller than 5,000. Thus only 16.8 per cent of the loans this year have been given to 45 per cent of the population, and 83.2 per cent of the loans have gone to 55 per cent of the population.

The people in the small towns and rural areas, if these figures hold true as to previous years, seem to be the orphans of the storm so far as housing is concerned, the new poor of Canada. The people living in small towns or rural areas have many other inconveniences so far as the amenities of life are concerned. This house has often been informed of the lack of television services and the fact that educational standards in these areas are not as good as in other areas. Quite often there are no lending institutions or real estate agencies to push housing for you, so these people, the 45 per cent of the population, seem unable to get the advantages of this particular legislation we have before us.

It is a joy to see semi-socialistic legislation such as this introduced by anti-socialists. I would hope that before this bill is finally approved our anti-socialist sponsors of the bill will explain to us what they can do to

[Mr. L'Heureux.l

make sure that the advantages of this legislation are given to the underprivileged 45 per cent of the people. The government's own statistics show that, so far as housing is concerned, they are underprivileged. That is the only point I wanted to make at this time.

In that connection I should like to point out that on the same pages of Hansard it is indicated that the small communities in my own constituency, with a total population of over 12,000 people, have had four loans in the last 11 years under the National Housing Act. I know, as a result of visiting this constituency, that the housing is not of the kind that means they do not need these loans. I hope the minister will tell us what steps Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation, and the various officers of his department, are going to take to see that the benefits of these lending privileges are spread to this underprivileged 45 per cent.

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LIB

John Richard Garland

Liberal

Mr. J. R. Garland (Nipissing):

Mr. Speaker, I do not wish to detain the house but I should like to say just a word on behalf of the communities of Canada under 50,000 population. In doing so I hope I will not be accused of being regional or sectional in my thinking. I should like to draw the minister's attention to one small but, in my opinion, important aspect of the availability of mortgage funds for house building.

One of the greatest problems of the smaller communities is the continual siphoning off of investment money to the larger centres. I am not suggesting that this is anything new or anything of a special problem that has arisen since this government has been in charge of affairs. It is not in that sense that I am raising this question.

It is not my intention to name companies today, but how often have we heard the explanation given that this company or that company are not lending money for housing in this or that community. I am sure that most hon. members on all sides of the house who come from the smaller cities and towns in this country have heard this same complaint. I believe the lending institutions have a responsibility to make more of their funds available for home building. In the second place I believe they have a responsibility to lend more money for this purpose in the communities in which they are doing business.

I recognize the fact that the lending institutions have the right to invest their funds to the best advantage of their respective companies and I naturally am not suggesting any government interference or compulsion. However, by permitting this trend of ignoring the mortgage needs of the smaller centres to

continue, a great disservice is being done to the over-all development of this country. Unless this trend can be arrested or unless the government is prepared to supply substantially larger sums, home builders in the future may be forced to deal with private lenders to a greater degree at ridiculously high interest rates. Such a development will eliminate any hope of low cost housing which all of us, on all sides of the house, recognize is badly needed.

I hope the minister will not be annoyed at what I am going to say now. I am sure he will agree that there has been a considerable levelling off in the Canadian economy during the past few months. The proof of this is the present legislation. It now seems desirable-and I am not opposing this action-to pump more funds into the economy. However, in view of these changing circumstances, it is quite conceivable that the lending institutions may well become more selective in their lending in the small centres, with those areas suffering accordingly.

As I said earlier, I am not suggesting in any sense that there be government interference or compulsion of any kind. But if a way could be found of bringing this matter to the attention of the lending institutions I think we could well tap a substantial amount of money that could be used for home building in the smaller cities across this country, thereby eliminating to a degree the need for the kind of legislation that seems necessary here today.

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PC

John Smith

Progressive Conservative

Mr. John Smith (Lincoln):

Mr. Speaker, I did not expect to speak on this bill because, in my opinion, it seems to do all that it is intended to do at this time. I look upon it more or less as an emergency measure. It provides a substantial sum of money for the building of new homes, something which will be a big stimulant to the building industry. With the lowering of the down payments it will also make it possible for many more people with less capital to purchase a new home for themselves.

This new bill is going to create jobs throughout the country not only in the building trade but also in industry, the manufacturing of plumbing goods, electrical supplies, heating equipment and a great many other industries allied to the construction trade. However, the bill does not provide complete methods to solve our housing problem, especially in the large cities. During the past five years home building has been on a stop and go basis. Each year substantial sums of money were provided. Then the boom was on until the money was spent. Then there was a lull until a further appropriation was made and the boom was on again, always on

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a higher mortgage interest rate. I am pleased that at this time there is going to be no increase in the rate.

There is no doubt, Mr. Speaker, that Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation have done a big job in providing homes but now we find that a large group of Canadians have not been able to keep up with the steady climb in the cost of building and high interest rates. This amendment to the act cannot do much for them other than if many new homes are built, more of the older homes will be available for those in the lower income brackets.

The gap seems to have widened considerably during the past five years between those people who can afford to build and those who cannot afford to do so, with the result that there is a very large group of people now earning about $3,000 who cannot hope to own a home of their own or to be able to rent a good house under existing conditions. I therefore feel that Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation have a job to do in ways and means to solve the housing problem of those people in the low income brackets, because those people are entitled to much better housing than they have at the present time, especially in the larger cities.

A condition of this kind developed just prior to the beginning of the last war and with the co-operation of Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation and the builders a house was developed to sell for $3,000, with a small down payment, something which helped greatly at that time. I feel that something like that could be done again, of course on the basis of probably a $6,000 to $7,000 house. A very popular house some years ago was one with a story and a half, finished downstairs and the upstairs unfinished. Something was said today about the owners or the buyers and that if they could just put more of their own time into the house, they could bring the cost down. That was one of the reasons why this house to which I made reference was developed. Such houses provided a home for a great many people who otherwise would not have been able to get it. A house like that will comply with the N.H.A. regulations on a 40 foot lot. I know that some of our town planners probably will not agree to that, but a house of that type on a 40 foot lot would provide a six foot side yard and a ten foot drive. Using dry wall construction and other lower cost materials, and on lots with a narrow fronting, I am confident that it can be done again.

Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation seems to be promoting the wide frontage house today which requires a wide front lot,

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entailing greater cost, higher taxes and more local improvement costs. I would suggest, Mr. Minister, that consideration be given to a low cost home along the lines I have suggested.

Another department of housing that I think should be encouraged is the building of low rental housing units for those in the low income brackets. In almost every city there are areas-some of them large and some of them small-which, while not slum areas, are blighted areas which could be redeveloped for new housing. Generous assistance and encouragement should be given to municipalities who wish to enter into this type of municipal housing. I might say that we are a little behind in municipal housing in this country. In Great Britain you will find that practically 50 per cent of the houses over there are owned by the municipalities who are able to rent them at very reasonable rents.

Land assembly schemes should be encouraged as that type of land development eliminates the high profits in serviced lots and makes such lots available to builders and home owners at reasonable prices.

Mr. Speaker, I heartily endorse the passing of this bill. I have heard very favourable comments on it from builders and from people who wish to buy a home, but it is not the final answer to this housing problem in Canada. I am sure that Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation will be able in the near future to provide new ideas and better leadership in the housebuilding industry under the direction of this government.

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?

Mr. Alex. B. Macdonald@Vancouver-Kingsway

May I take five minutes of the time of the house, Mr. Speaker, to refer to the amendments proposed by the minister as they affect my own city of Vancouver. I think Vancouver can be proud of its home ownership. I say this from observation and not from a knowledge of statistics but I would say that there is a higher percentage of home ownership in Vancouver than in any other big city in Canada. The homes are neat, clean and attractive, with gardens suited to the balmy climate to which the minister referred the other night. And yet, in the heart of Vancouver as in many other big cities, there are blighted areas, areas that are not in any way the fault of the people who live there but areas of squalid, decrepit, crowded housing which inevitably infect the health and civic life of the whole city. One such area in the city of Vancouver, probably the principal blighted area, is east of Main and north of False creek. You

could probably say that area totalled one square mile and could be called a blighted area crying out for slum clearance, land acquisition, demolition and rebuilding to take care of the inhabitants.

It seems to me that if the city of Vancouver would see that the health and building by-laws were applied rigorously many of these buildings would be condemned now as unfit for habitation. But that would still be no solution. That would not give to the people who live there dwellings into which they could move.

The houses themselves are often firetraps, many of them a menace not only to the lives of the people who live in them but also a threat to the lives of the firefighters who from time to time are called upon to rescue lives in time of fire. The whole of such an area contributes to the social toll which we pay in disease, crime, delinquency and vice.

Now to what extent would the amendments proposed help people who live in such an area? I would reply, to a very little extent. For instance, how many of these people would be able to borrow say $10,000; I would not imagine that any less would be required to build in such an area and they would also have to pay interest at 6 per cent on that loan. Interest alone would start at the rate of $50 a month. How many of them would be able to raise the down payment in cash; I would think it would require at least $1,200 as a down payment and probably, in view of land values there, the figure would be very much greater.

How many could acquire land in such an area? How many could afford to devote, not 23 per cent as formerly, but 27 per cent of their family budget to housing needs? This would inevitably mean cutting down on other family necessities. How many of these people have an income of $3,450 a year, bearing in mind that although many of them are making good wages, not too many of them are able to work 52 weeks of the year.

The answer to all these questions is summed up in the fact that these amendments simply do not begin to approach the problem of an area such as that. Yet the problem should be approached now; now is the time of labour surplus, the time when many of our skilled building workers are condemned to enforced idleness; the time when particularly in British Columbia we have ample supplies of good building materials. Never was there a better time to approach such a problem and it has to be approached as a slum clearance project. It has to be approached, in my opinion, under sections 23 and 36 of the National Housing Act.

I do not think all the blame for lack of initiative rests either with this government or the former government. I think the city fathers of Vancouver have shown a lack of foresight; I think they have shown procrastination and timidity and even callousness in the face of this problem. This is evidenced by the very limited extent to which Vancouver has even taken advantage of the limited dividend sections of the National Housing Act, let alone the land acquisition and slum clearance sections.

So I say if we are to bring life, and health, and laughter and good living into the kind of blighted area I have been describing, the time to start is now and the sections that the government must invoke, publicize and proclaim are sections 23 and 36 of the National Housing Act. If they will, in co-operation with the provincial and municipal governments, undertake a bold and imaginative scheme under those sections in the city of Vancouver I am sure the people of that city would applaud that kind of action.

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IND

Gérard Loiselle

Independent Liberal

Mr. Gerard Loiselle (St. Ann):

Mr. Speaker, this is the first time I have the honour of taking part in the debates of this house and, as do all new members, I beg your indulgence.

Allow me, Mr. Speaker, to offer you my congratulations upon your appointment to your high office.

Allow me in particular to tell you how happy I am, as Liberal member of the constituency of St. Ann, to have served and to continue to serve the electors of my riding under the direction of our great leader, the Right Hon. Louis St. Laurent. He has always been to me a source of inspiration and, in spite of the decision he has taken, he will forever remain one of the greatest figures of Canadian history.

Now, Mr. Speaker, inasmuch as we are required to stick to the subject matter of this bill, I must say that our economy was so upset by world war II that no field of finance, federal, provincial or municipal, escaped the effects of the war.

Because of restricted house building, people are forced to live in crowded quarters. As a consequence, we find that delinquency and discord in the homes are on the increase, that the standards of health are lowered, and so on. Those evils have been felt for about twenty years. We must therefore continue and even intensify the campaign launched by the previous government to meet the continuing seriousness of that problem.

On account of the restrictions which were extended into the post-war period, some

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dwellings have now become so outmoded that very many of them are now but slums, and a disgrace to our cities. Cities cannot rigorously enforce their regulations without evicting a certain number of families or without aggravating conditions which have become a social evil.

It is a good thing that certain changes introduced by the Liberal government should have opened up numerous horizons. Some municipalities started to carry out vast projects, in keeping with the requirements, with results which did not encourage others to do likewise. Were such projects really practicable in altogether different environments, both from the standpoint of population, family formation and of other particular social problems?

The legislation favoured the building of multiple dwellings where families of two, three or four persons could easily find accommodation. But the children of working families or of low income families have an equal right to such welfare. It is our duty to preserve these men of tomorrow, who are our greatest asset. It is our duty to provide them with an environment where life will be agreeable and where their vitality will develop normally. If we neglect them, we will only have helpless and unfit men and women to save the honour of the country when danger comes. Can this be called foresight?

Representing as I do the constituency of St. Ann, with a labour population, I know of the difficulties faced by those humble people who have entrusted me with the mandate of representing them in this house. That is why I ask that the government, in co-operation with the provincial government and the various municipalities involved, take such steps as are necessary to bring about the disappearance of these old ramshackle buildings, with no modern conveniences whatever, having neither bathroom nor shower, often having only a single combined entrance and exit, which makes these dwellings real fire-traps. In proof of this, may I recall, Mr. Speaker, what happened last spring in that part of Montreal which is being rebuilt at this time. When one of those shacks burned down, one or two children perished in the flames because this dwelling provided no means of escape for its occupants.

The committee entrusted with a survey of slum conditions in Montreal classified as slum areas four well-defined sections of my constituency alone. That is why I urge the government to do all it can to make the amendments to this act, and other means available not only to Montreal authorities but to all Canadian municipalities so that all those

National Housing Act

cities and towns may bring about renewed life in their areas marked for future clearance. And this, of course, applies not only to the Montreal city authorities but to all Canadian municipalities.

I must congratulate the preceding Liberal government which, since 1954, has constantly improved the national housing act thereby making it possible not only for individuals but also for cities and towns to take advantage of it, to improve the lot of thousands of Canadians who are still dependent upon public authorities to help them maintain their standard of living.

Slums cost us as much as the upkeep of an army division for a whole year. In a country as young as this, we cannot remain idle in the face of this succession of daily happenings which should open our eyes to true conditions.

I would like to see all the people in my riding living in surroundings favourable to their normal development and that is why I urge this government to make credit for home building more easily available and to introduce legislation with clauses flexible enough to provide for an infinite number of particular cases.

If we manage to create happiness in a few hundred families in each of our municipalities, we will be able to say that our government has done something to help the Canadian people. When the air of slum areas is cleared of the foulness fostered by neglect or laziness, it will become wholesome, and we shall see brighter faces thanking us.

People who are happy in their homes become good citizens, and it is easy for them to deal with those degrading aspects that are unavoidable in any society. Let us keep our people strong, and to this effect, they should be comfortably and decently housed.

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Public Works (Mr. Green) recently explained the amendments he proposes to bring to the 1954 National Housing Act for the purpose, mainly, of encouraging low cost housing and the building of low rental apartment houses.

There is no doubt that higher loans and lower down payments will make it possible for more citizens to become home owners. This action is justified. However, there are other measures which the government could have proposed and which would have had greater effects in that field. There is first the rate of interest charged on loans. Under present conditions, this rate is so exorbitant that many heads of families prefer not to

[Mr. Loiselle.l

build a house and many promoters prefer not to undertake any large project. This rate of interest should be revised and maintained at such a level that the cost of money will not be out of proportion with other costs which the small home owner must bear. There certainly is justification at this time to consider the advisability of revising section 4 of the National Housing Act. There are also local improvements namely sewage and water services, pavements and sidewalks, which impose a considerable burden upon the small home owner. There is no provision for this in the National Housing Act except in the case of a project undertaken jointly with a provincial government or a municipality. However, everywhere those local improvements constitute a basic obstacle to the building of low cost houses. It is certainly advisable to consider helping the small home owner in that regard, either by including the cost of such services in the total annual amount charged for the loan, or by advancing to the home owner the necessary credit to pay this expense and spreading the repayment over a very long period of time, at a very low rate of interest. Not only would that facilitate construction of low cost houses but it would also be an indirect help to municipalities, which could thus provide their people with more adequate services and do it faster. Many lots which are unusable at the present time would become available sooner for the construction of small houses.

The federal government should arrange with provincial and municipal governments for them to assume the cost of public services at no cost to the owners.

Finally, there is the extravagant cost of building lots. The government should consider the advisability of establishing a policy for buying and reselling land, at terms which would encourage the building of low cost single houses.

The hon. member proposes to increase the amount available under section 22 of the National Housing Act, concerning low rental housing.

This legislation seems chiefly designed to encourage housing construction by limited dividend companies. It is obvious that there is a great demand for low cost housing in most cities. However, this legislation does not tackle the real problem, the problem of the single-family dwelling, renting at a price more closely related to the income of the head of the family and the number of his children. In my opinion, it is in the field of singlefamily dwellings that the act must be

amended. Section 2, which deals with an increase of available funds, takes no account whatever of family conditions.

We are going through a difficult period and the shadow of unemployment is increasingly threatening our cities, from coast to coast. The number of families no longer able to pay an economic rent, that is a rent allowing limited dividend companies to make a reasonable profit, is increasing from day to day.

The slums, which have multiplied over the years, are more than ever inhabited by low-income families.

It is in that field that government action should be stepped up without delay. In his remarks, the hon. minister has pointed out the necessity to provide employment. Well, housing construction at this time would increase by many thousands the number of jobs available in Canada.

It is up to the federal government, when unemployment is on the increase, to encourage a greater number of slum-clearance projects and to provide comfortable and healthy dwellings at a rental price commensurate with the low income of poor families whose number is much greater than we like to admit and is constantly increasing.

I wonder then why the government seems to be delaying the implementation of a family rent housing project undertaken in the heart of the city of Montreal by the former government. This project which goes under the name of Habitations Jeanne-Mance has, among other advantages, that of bringing about the clearance of dreadful slums where large families are crowded together without any form of physical or mental hygiene whatever. This project will enable 800 families to live in conditions calculated to make the most of their social potentialities. I hope that it will be possible to eliminate delays and that the government will see to it that this project is brought to a successful conclusion as soon as possible.

I am extremely sorry that the government seems to be taking so little heed of this festering sore, slums. I know whereof I speak, representing as I do a working class district, in which industry has constantly been encroaching upon residential areas, thereby hastening the spread of blighted areas.

I feel I am entitled to request, on behalf of the people of my constituency, that public funds be used to improve housing conditions in equal if not in a higher proportion than to foster the construction of low cost housing. There is room for low cost rental housing in my constituency and I have received assurance that the authorities of the city of Montreal will co-operate with me in bringing this 96698-1614

National Housing Act

about, as long as the federal government provides its own co-operation unhesitatingly.

The third and sixth parts of the housing act should be amended so as to make it easier to expropriate slum dwellings and to foster construction of subsidized housing for low income families who have no hope of ever owning their own homes. It is in that regard that the government should increase the amounts made available to various housing and mortgage corporations. The sum provided by section 23 should not be $25,000,000 but $50,000,000. As far as section 26 is concerned, we would need not $50,000,000 but $100,000,000 and even more.

There is no reason why the government should contribute 75 per cent to the cost of family houses while contributing only 50 per cent of the cost of expropriation of slum areas. The federal government would be justified in raising to 75 per cent its contribution to slum clearance. This measure would encourage many municipalities to clear up their slums and substandard houses. In fact, it is as important to clear the slums which degrade our youth physically and morally as it is to provide it with healthy housing. Both measures go hand in hand, and section 23 should tie in with section 36.

The approach to the problem of slum clearance and urban rehabilitation is not easy for municipalities. To be practical, the federal government should encourage municipalities to undertake studies of urban rehabilitation and, to this end, expand the credit facilities provided by part 5 of the National Housing Act, specially for the application of subsection (h) of section 33, providing for studies of slum clearance in co-operation with provinces and municipalities. There is no reason why the federal government should not pay at least 75 per cent of the cost of such studies.

I wish at this point to congratulate the Canadian association of town-planning for its initiative in this field. That association hired a town-planner specialized in slum clearance and urban rehabilitation and has been carrying for the past year an intensive propaganda program on this matter all across this country.

There is no reason why in a country as wealthy as Canada, slums should remain the refuge of needy families. We must use all means at our disposal to enable those families to live under conditions fit for human beings and such as to help them become good citizens. So, I hope the government will consider those few suggestions, within the

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shortest possible delay, and that the required amendments to the National Housing Act will immediately follow.

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CCF

Murdo William Martin

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. M. W. Martin (Timmins):

Mr. Speaker,

I am one of the members who decided yesterday to wait until today to take part in the debate on this bill. I find that quite a number of matters that I had intended to deal with have already been covered to some extent today by one hon. member or another. As a result, and in an effort to avoid repetition, I shall try to curtail my remarks considerably from what I originally intended to say. If perchance I should find that I am repeating some of the matters which have been dealt with today it is for the reason that I think they can bear repetition.

In addition to the normal housing needs, as they are recognized in this country, we have our rapidly increasing unemployment and increasing immigration in the last few years. The figures for this are very easy to get. All we have to do is to turn to the dominion bureau of statistics, and they give us the picture immediately of just what the need might be. But I should like to deal with another aspect of the question which is perhaps not so quickly and readily recognized in this country today. It has been touched upon by several speakers but I do not believe any of them have had the opportunity that I have had over the last number of years to realize just what a problem we have in this field. In the last seven years I have had the opportunity to work in a city fire department and, through the medium of inspections and of actually responding to fire calls, I have certainly had occasion to see just how big a problem we have in this country today in regard to slums and people living in matchboxes for houses, shacks and firetraps.

The social side of this problem was dealt with quite well by the hon. member for Van-couver-Kingsway (Mr. Macdonald). Through close association with the municipal police department, which always works closely with the firefighters, I have also been able to see that in addition to the major proportion of fire calls the major proportion of police calls are always to the same area, the same district or the same family living in the same slums. We should add up the costs involved in police protection and fire protection, jails, courts and so forth throughout the country. If we could save only part of that cost not only would we be curing a social ill but with the money we could afford to build all the houses required, clean out the slums and solve one of our biggest problems.

If hon. members over the Christmas weekend could take one day or so and go out

with one of the fire inspectors and see some of these buildings believe me, Mr. Speaker, they would get an idea of what the problem

is. You have to see the buildings to believe

it. It is just simply impossible for the human mind to realize the conditions under which some people exist in this country. If hon. members could undergo the absolutely unforgettable experience that I have had on different occasions of stumbling around through smoke-filled rooms and carrying out the bodies of little children burned to death in those firetraps they would realize that it is a problem that we are going to have to meet in this country.

I should now like to turn to the remarks made by the minister yesterday, as reported at page 2499 of Hansard. In dealing with the problem, he said:

If those interest rates are reduced to the extent that the lending institutions and the banks will no longer lend any money for housing, then we are in a real tailspin in so far as housing in Canada is concerned.

I believe, Mr. Speaker, he put his finger on the basic fundamental of this problem in Canada today. It is an admission that interest on money in this country is the most important factor and takes precedence over human welfare. Until we face up to the realization that this condition exists and grapple with the problem and do something about it, the housing problem in the country will never be solved by this bill or any other bill like it.

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CCF

Colin Cameron

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Colin Cameron (Nanaimo):

Mr. Speaker, that was a very revealing speech that the Minister of Public Works (Mr. Green) made last night, possibly inadvertently revealing but revealing nevertheless. Just what was it that he told us and indirectly the people of Canada? He told us and the people of Canada in effect that in this country, which is the second wealthiest country per capita in the world, our economy is organized in such a way that it is not possible for the people of Canada to have the housing they require. In explaining this amending bill, by which the government is increasing its direct contribution to the housing needs of the Canadian people, the minister told us that this was necessitated by the fact that the ordinary traditional lending sources of funds were drying up.

But he also expressed great concern for the future of housing in Canada because in his view it was not possible for the government to continue indefinitely playing the role that they propose to play under this new amendment. I wonder, Mr. Speaker, whether the minister is going to go further than that and tell the people of Canada just why that is so. I hope, for instance, that he is not

going to tell the people of Canada or try to tell them that it was all the fault of the previous government's tight money policy, as he suggested yesterday.

You know, Mr. Speaker, one gets a little weary of listening to this nonsense about tight money, even when it is gilded by coming from ministerial lips. I for one find it very hard to believe that my hon. friend and fellow British Columbian is really so ignorant and so silly as he tried to make out last night. I am sure he knows perfectly well that the tight money situation about which he was complaining was not the result of any government action. It was the result of the almost automatic operations of our economy, and if he is suggesting now that since his government came to office the tight money situation has relaxed, is he trying to tell us that it was due to some action on the part of his government or does he not really know that if there has been a relaxation it has been because there has been a slackening off in the level of economic activity in Canada. There has been less demand for funds and that is the reason, of course, why interest rates have been falling. Neither his government nor the previous government had anything to do with it.

It is true enough that the monetary authorities during the regime of the previous government did take some rather ineffective steps to curb the inflationary spiral which, despite the brave words of the present Minister of Finance (Mr. Fleming), is still continuing to climb. They did take some steps within their very limited means of action. I wonder whether the minister is suggesting to us that the way his government hopes to see housing financed in Canada is by another shot of inflation. I wonder whether that is his reason.

I suggest, Mr. Speaker, that the government had better face the realities of the situation in Canada today. I remember last session, Mr. Speaker, speaking on this particular issue, I believe it was, when I had occasion to quote from the words of a very eminent United States economist who was dealing with the economy of the Soviet union. He pointed out that there had been some very tragic economic mistakes made by the soviet authorities, that they had diverted such a very large proportion of their capital accumulations to industrial expansion that there was nothing left for the needs of the people, particularly housing needs.

At that time I pointed out that it was ironic that the totalitarian government of Russia and the laissez-faire government of Canada had presided over the same operation and

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had landed in the same impasse fundamentally for the same reason. In the Soviet union we have authorities making decisions with regard to the direction of investment who are not susceptible at all to any sort of public control. They make the decision and the people have to abide by it. In Canada we have a group who are making these decisions and they are equally not susceptible to public control because they have control of the accumulated savings of the Canadian people.

I think that is an important matter for us to bear in mind and I would commend to my hon. friends of the Social Credit party that they should bear in mind the fact that housing for the Canadian people can only come out of the savings of the Canadian people. There is no magic wand by which the government or the Bank of Canada can suddenly call into being funds to make house building operations possible that have no relation to real savings in the Canadian economy.

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John Horne Blackmore

Social Credit

Mr. Blackmore:

Will he tell us how the

Guernsey island government managed to build their market house around 1820 with Guernsey island notes?

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Colin Cameron

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Cameron:

Yes, I could, but I do not intend to divert myself to that just now. I knew of that case probably long before the hon. member for Lethbridge (Mr. Blackmore), I think.

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Colin Cameron

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Cameron:

I read the documents about it when I was a boy, but I do not intend to be diverted to that. As a matter of fact, that particular instance underlines exactly what I am saying, if only the hon. member understood it.

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Colin Cameron

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Cameron:

Mr. Speaker, as I say, housing can only come from the savings of the Canadian people and those savings are found in a number of places. They are found in the savings accounts of the chartered banks, in the funds of the life insurance companies, in the trust funds of trust companies and so on, and the individuals who are in control of them have a responsibility in the investment of those funds. I for one am not going to criticize them for having adopted the policy they have in recent months and years,

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for that matter, of finding more lucrative fields of investment than housing for the funds entrusted to their care.

But there is another place in which the savings of the Canadian people can be found and it is a place where most people do not look for them. They do not consider them as savings of the Canadian people. They are found in such places as these, Mr. Speaker, in the depreciation and depletion allowances permitted Canadian corporations which in 1956 amounted to $2 billion. They are found also in the form of the undistributed profits of Canadian corporations which in 1956 amounted to some $1 billion. In those two sums alone we had nearly 10 per cent of the total wealth production of Canada, a very large proportion of the savings of the Canadian people.

I am going to suggest that if the government really intends to do something about housing in Canada it will have to stop talking nonsense about tight money, it will have to stop blaming either the Bank of Canada or the Liberal government and it will have to look to the place where those savings have accumulated and start channelling them to meet the housing needs of the Canadian people. At the present time, of course, the National Housing Act does literally nothing to aid the people in Canada who need housing most desperately. It is, of course, notorious that what the National Housing Act actually is doing is aid the more fortunate sections of our society.

One has only to examine the conditions even in the capital city of Ottawa, the capital of the second wealthiest nation in the world, to see that there are a great many Canadian citizens living in the most disgraceful conditions. There are in this city ramshackle, falling-down firetraps in which human beings are living, and they are living there because the Canadian economy cannot afford to build them houses, as the minister told us last night. We cannot afford to build them houses because we are indulging in the luxury of permitting large and powerful groups in our society to take to themselves a very large part of the savings of the Canadian people. People do not have to be even on the lower rungs of incomes in this country to be denied any benefits under the National Housing Act.

I have a young man in mind who is a high school teacher in British Columbia, drawing a good salary of over $4,000 a year and desperately in need of adequate housing for his family. It is literally impossible for him to raise the necessary down payment or the necessary funds for the purchase of a lot in

order to build a house under the National Housing Act. Of course, it is equally impossible for him to save from his salary enough money to eventually build it without a National Housing Act loan.

The National Housing Act is, I think, rather ironically named because it is not contributing anything to the desperate housing needs of the Canadian people but is, as I say, really helping those more fortunate members of our community who can afford the down payment and can afford to buy lots. I would suggest, Mr. Speaker, that while this was a very revealing speech we had from the Minister of Public Works last night, we can expect many more revealing speeches from other ministers and other spokesmen for our country within the next few years explaining just why it is that the Canadian people cannot have the things that they should have from the second wealthiest economy in the world. In fact to my mind, Mr. Speaker, this bill points out the fact that we are going to come full circle to the position in which we were some years ago.

It is up to this government, and also I would suggest to the official opposition, to make sure that they have the means to make this sort of society continue to operate. I suggest to them again that to permit nearly 10 per cent of the wealth production of the country to fall into the hands of the large corporations, not for distribution to the shareholders but in order to control the form and direction of investments, is to hang around their necks a millstone that will drag them down to destruction yet.

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William Arnold Peters

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Arnold Peters (Timiskaming):

Mr. Speaker, the particular area I represent is affected to a large degree by the situation that has developed in housing because part of our economy is dependent on that industry. While I feel some good is going to come out of Bill No. 238, I certainly do not think it is going to meet all the requirements of the people of my area. We have a large lumber industry, specializing in white pine and making the majority of the trim that is used in housing today, and there are many people dependent on that industry. We have also, fortunately or unfortunately, one of the largest plants in Ontario manufacturing lumber products, the Hill, Clarke and Francis plant. This plant normally employs between 500 and 700 workers. All these employees have been informed there will be a shutdown and nobody will be employed for the three weeks over the Christmas holidays. Even in the last few weeks less than one-third of the normal number of employees have been working.

Housing has, therefore, had a great deal of effect on the unemployment situation, and in turn the unemployment situation has an effect on the housing industry. I noticed that according to yesterday's Gazette the minister stated:

Mr. Green also disclosed that Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation had been advised to halt eviction proceedings against unemployed workers in Windsor-an action which might be taken with respect to other areas where required.

I would suggest that an amendment should be introduced to the effect that no unemployed person shall be evicted from a home that is financed by Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation. I believe we have some responsibility to our people. We ask them to build homes; we allow them to borrow money; we certainly want and are going to insist on the slum clearance mentioned by the hon. member for Timmins (Mr. Martin) and the hon. member for Vancouver-Kingsway (Mr. Macdonald). We are going to do something to rid ourselves of that blight, and I say we must also do something to protect the people who, through no fault of their own, are in an area where unemployment makes it necessary for the government to protect them against eviction and to protect the amount of money they have put into a home. I believe that this is a responsibility of the federal government and I, for one, would be very happy to see such a provision written into the act. Then whenever an area is declared a surplus labour area, and we have a number of those areas today, this clause could be brought into effect and people would not be faced with the possibility of losing their homes and the money they have put into them.

I believe the government must give consideration also to the problem of low cost housing. I am not going to repeat the figures given concerning the number of people who are not able to buy a home because they have not got the down payment. It is my opinion that the large down payment required has been more responsible for the slump in housing than any other factor. I do not believe it has been necessary for the government to advance money to lending institutions for housing purposes. If the government had not obliged individuals to use second mortgages and chattel mortgages in order to obtain the down payment, as many working people did, then I do not believe we would have been faced with the housing slump with which we are now faced. It is certainly impossible, in my opinion, for most of the people I know and with whom I have worked to save enough money to meet the down payment under the act as it was, and I think it is going to be equally difficult for them to do so under this amendment.

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We have another problem that has been dealt with in several ways, and that is the housing problem in mining communities in particular. I refer to those mining communities that have been built and developed in the last few years, such as Elliot Lake, the Blind River development, the Bancroft area development and many others that are taking place. We are asking people to go into these communities, as they did in my own area a number of years ago, in Matach-ewan, Cobalt and numerous other areas, to build houses and guarantee payment over a period of 20 or 30 years. No consideration is given to the fact that in the majority of cases these mining developments will not last long enough for the people to carry out this contract. There were certain people who knew this at the time, but it was not general knowledge. I feel that some consideration should be given to areas like Blind River and Elliot Lake, where people who are working for low wages are trying to build houses and yet the mining development may not last long enough for them to complete their contract. I am told that these people are only guaranteed by Central Mortgage and Housing to the end of the uranium contracts, which is 1962. I think some consideration should be given by the government to those people who have to buy housing in these areas.

One of those particular properties in Bancroft has a novel idea which I think is a good one, whereby the employee rents the house for a period of a year. During the year he is paying a nominal rent. After the year is over, he has the option either to apply the rent that he paid for the year to the down payment on the property or to continue to rent it at a much higher rate of rent. I think that some consideration along this line could be given to houses built under the National Housing Act so that our people would be able to establish this down payment much more easily than they have been able to do it in the past.

Another thing that I think should be attached to the loans that our people get under the National Housing Act is a life insurance policy so that if a person buying one of these houses, the breadwinner of the family, were to die after paying into it for a number of years, then at least the dependants of that breadwinner would be able to live in that house and have it debt free. As I am sure hon. members know, this is done in connection with automobiles. When you buy an automobile on credit, if you die, at least your family are left with a paid-up automobile. I certainly think we should at least give the same consideration to these people who buy houses.

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I believe that we in Canada should be thinking very seriously about going into a low cost rental housing development. We are finding difficulty. Certainly the fact that slums have been mentioned, and that when we walk even through the city of Ottawa we see many houses that should be torn down with decent houses being built in their place, indicates that we should be considering low cost housing where the government will put up all the money for the house and will build it. These developments are taking place at municipal levels now and they are being satisfactorily completed. They are being developed, in rare cases, by provincial authorities and I think are being satisfactorily developed in that field. The government, if it goes into this low cost rental housing, would be able to finance that housing project over a period of 40 years to 60 years and sometimes even a greater length of time. They are getting the money for the amount that they are having to pay for it and they are not having to pay high rates. I think we should give this matter great consideration. Many of the people who are existing on $1,200 and $1,400 income per year are in no way able to take advantage of this type of housing project. If they are going to have any housing benefits, they will have to receive those benefits from a low cost rental project.

Another thing which must be borne in mind-and which is not borne in mind-in connection with housing is the fact that the people who can afford housing in Canada are the people who do not need housing and will not need housing. We have many young families which are being raised with the breadwinner starting out in an occupation in which he is going to advance. He has more expense in the early days of his employment when he is raising a young family and may need four bedrooms or five bedrooms. But when finally he has raised his family and is in a position to afford the housing that our country is asking him to pay for, he no longer needs four or five bedrooms, he needs only one for his wife and himself. Hence some subsidy should be given to our young people. What we want is to see that our children are raised in comfortable fire-safe homes, not necessarily to provide a big mansion for a man and his wife in those days when his earning power has reached its peak. We want to be able to give the best possible housing to the young married couples of our country and the children who are growing up in this country. I think some subsidization consideration should be given to this problem that faces all young married couples. When their need is greatest, their resources are the smallest. If we have the welfare of our Canadian people at heart, I think we are going to give this matter some consideration.

I should like to conclude by just mentioning the fact that I believe that in the mining areas in particular special housing projects are going to have to be developed. If we are going to be fair and honest with those people whom we are asking to move into these remote areas, we are going to have to give them some consideration. If they are going to move into Blind River without the possibility of knowing how long that development is going to last because of federal government guarantees on the sale of the product, then I think we are going to have to give them greater consideration in those particular areas than we do elsewhere. I think we are going to have to give consideration to the fact that people who rent in these new housing developments should be given some assistance in the down payment, whether it be in the form of no down payment or in the form of a year's rent as down payment. Some consideration should be given to them. We should scale our payments for our housing so that the smaller payments are made at the beginning, and interest rates must be taken into consideration because otherwise obviously there is not going to be any principal payment at all. But there should be low payments for the first ten years of that loan while the children are small and growing and increased payments when the people can afford to make them.

I think that if we take a survey of the needs of the Canadian people, we can continually build houses for the people in the areas in which they are needed at a rate they can afford to pay for them and that we will supply employment for a good number of the people that are dependent entirely on the housing industry for their livelihood. The one seems to me to go hand and hand with the other because in a city where unemployment is growing every day I cannot see those people or their friends going out and buying new houses; and if they do not go out and buy new houses the unemployment situation is going to grow in pace.

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Herbert Wilfred Herridge

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. H. W. Herridge (Kootenay West):

Mr. Speaker, before I left my constituency to come to Ottawa for this session of parliament I promised a number of people who are supporters of all parties in this house that I would extend to the Minister of Public Works (Mr. Green) their sincere congratulations on his appointment to his present position and would wish him well in all he undertakes to the general advantage of Canada. In addition to that, Mr. Speaker, I have to convey the particular congratulations and good wishes of all his comrades who served in the 54th battalion and who now reside in that

constituency. The hon. gentleman's uncle, the former member for Kootenay West, later served in the Senate. His mother at the present time is a constituent of mine. I had the opportunity for some years of being with the minister in the famous 54th Kootenay battalion. I think it is a very good indication that we live in a democracy when, regardless of difference in political opinions and keen differences on policies and things of that sort, we can rejoice in someone's receiving a recognition he well deserves. Having said that, Mr. Speaker, I must refer to the principle of the bill which is to do something to improve housing conditions in Canada.

I must say that I did appreciate the rather frank way in which the minister indicated that he would not for a moment suggest that this bill is a cure-all. If I heard him correctly last night, I think that was the emphasis he wished to place on his remarks and that he thought further consideration should be given to this subject in the near future, and, possibly, something more should be done about it. I am very pleased to hear that. To judge from his remarks as a whole I would say he would not for a moment contend that this is a complete remedy for our housing problems. This bill is a partial remedy, a very limited step in the right direction along a long trail over which we must yet proceed.

In my opinion, and I think this opinion is shared by the members of this group and every other thinking person in this house who has given consideration to these problems, a sound family life is essential for the development of a sound and healthy democratic nation. Furthermore, to have such sound families we must house them in adequate and satisfactory housing and all families must have the opportunity to enjoy such housing.

I think the minister will not for a moment deny that our present housing legislation does not provide for the needs of the most needy in Canada at the present time. I was very interested to read a short time ago an article in the Nelson Daily News on a talk given by Dr. Anderson, health officer for the Rossland Trail district with respect to housing and public health. I am just going to take the time of the house for a moment or two to read this because I think it places the emphasis on the subject very well.

One of the most difficult and universal public health problems of the young adult group is housing, Dr. L. S. Anderson, director of the West Kootenay health unit told Nelson Rotarians at a luncheon in the Hume Monday. The young married couples supporting families have little left over to buy houses.

He was talking about legislation making provision for securing houses under present circumstances. Dr. Anderson said:

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Next to putting milk into babies, there is no national policy that pays a better dividend to the public health than that of putting young couples into homes.

And that is the point we wish to emphasize particularly in this group-the provision for the needs of those people and for the older citizens in this country. There is no question about it, in my opinion, that with all our resources in Canada, with all our materials and with all our skill we lag far behind a number of other nations in the provision of satisfactory housing at a satisfactory price. I have done some reading in respect to housing in New Zealand and Australia and I would suggest that members might well do the same; in fact I would suggest that the minister could find ample occupation for his good looking parliamentary assistant if he more or less delegated to him this search for information as to what is being done in other countries.

Now, with regard to all these things we lag behind Sweden, we lag behind Norway and Denmark. Why should we, a virile, energetic and skilful people with ample financial resources and land, lag behind these countries who in some cases have lesser opportunities than ourselves. That is a situation that must soon, in my opinion, be corrected.

It is a funny thing-I should say in some respects it has been a rather tragic thing- that housing has been a problem peculiar to Canada for many years. I recently read that it has been a problem since 1891; just imagine that, housing in Canada has been a problem since 1891. I want to read very briefly from the Globe and Mail of November 28 in this respect as follows:

"The situation is acute", says Howard S. Rupert, Toronto welfare commissioner. "Even worse than 1913, because it is permanent", says Dr. Alvin Boyd, deputy medical officer of health. "Desperate" says Kathleen Gorrie, university settlement director. "A civic scandal", says the Reverend G. P. Parson, Anglican rector.

You can always bank on it, the Anglican rectors will dig up the scandal-

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Some hon. Members:

Oh, oh.

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Herbert Wilfred Herridge

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Herridge:

-with respect to housing. I quote:

It is my considered opinion the big real estate interests and land speculators plus the lack of courage of governments at all levels are solely responsible for the housing mess existing in our land. The housing problem goes back many years. In 1891, Goldwin Smith, in an article entitled Working Men's Homes, pointed out there were plenty of homes for the well-to-do. Today it would appear the same assumption is prevalent- housing provided for the well-to-do will gradually filter down to the rest of the population. Some little change in this laissez-faire attitude was seen in the Bruce report of 1934 and in the report of the parliamentary committee on housing in 1935.

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The National Construction Council of Canada among whose constituent members were the Canadian Manufacturers' Association, the unions of the building trade, the manufacturers of building material and the Architectural and Engineering Institute said: "Our investigations of housing for low-income groups show that provisions of this class of housing cannot ultimately be profitable to private enterprise. The responsibility of housing these groups is, in the final analysis, the responsibility of the state."

That is the opinion of these groups representing important segments of free enterprise in this country and we are of the same opinion, that these people are not going to obtain the housing they require unless the state accepts responsibility on a much wider basis than has been the case up to the present time.

It may interest hon. members to know that the only occasion, so far as I can find in Canadian history-and history is rather a hobby of mine on those week ends when I am not in Ottawa-when a governor general of this country has appeared before a parliamentary committee of this house was to give his view on a housing measure and to urge the necessity for improved housing for low-income groups in Canada. That was Lord Aberdeen and, if my memory serves me correctly, he appeared before a committee of this house in the railway committee room in 1898. Now the problem must have been mighty acute at that time for a governor general to appear before a committee of this house in connection with housing problems. And so it has remained ever since; we have spent a great deal of money and the previous governments have done something in this department but, to date, because we have never been able to tackle the core and to meet the essential problem, which is to provide housing for persons in the lower income groups, the problem remains unsolved.

I think it is correct to say, as has been said by members of this group speaking on the resolution preceding the bill and on the bill itself, that the majority of those who require houses most at the present time are not provided for in this legislation. I hope, therefore, that the minister will continue to go into this matter and will bring in some further amendments to the housing act to look after the present situation.

I do not want to repeat the many things that have been so well said prior to my rising; I do not wish to take up the time of the house unnecessarily, but I do want to suggest that there are other things that could be done so that we might have an adequate knowledge of the situation as it exists today. I think we should explore every avenue of information so that we have the facts when it comes to dealing with this problem from the point of view of population, of financial matters, cost

of materials, types of materials, the possibility of promoting more building of houses for the low-income groups and the possibility of utilizing some of the successful methods and procedures of the small holding section of the Veterans' Land Act. You have to explore every avenue to get the information, and on the basis of that information you must build a satisfactory national housing policy.

Strangely enough, in 1945, when this house was considering the bill to incorporate Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation-a proposal which my friends in the Social Credit group opposed most vigorously at that time- we were told by the then minister of finance, Mr. Ilsley, that we could not build houses at a satisfactory rate because there was a shortage of material in the country. Now we are told, generally, that we cannot build houses at a suitable rate because there is a shortage of money, though there are ample materials. We are a funny people, Mr. Speaker; one would think that it was Walt Disneyland as far as housing is concerned.

In this connection I should like to quote a prominent Canadian authority on this matter, the hon. member for Winnipeg North Centre (Mr. Knowles) who, on November 9, 1945, made a very brilliant speech on this bill to incorporate the Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation. I do not wish to read all of it because we would not have any supper tonight in that case. But at page 2006 of unrevised Hansard he said this:

The Minister of Finance knows that onfe of my favourite quotations from him, which X have read to the house before, was made on March 3, 1943. At that time he was being criticized by certain hon. members of this house, both on his own side and to my right, for what were regarded as huge war expenditures. He was being told that these expenditures would bankrupt the country, and that we simply could not go on. As recorded at page 930 of Hansard for March 3, 1943, the minister said:

"We do not pay for the war out of some hoard of money that we have accumulated in the past. We pay for it out of the taxes and savings that we obtain from the current income of the whole nation. We shall not run short of money. Indeed, our danger is the very reverse of that, namely, that we may pile up too much money in the pockets and bank accounts of Canadians, unless we strive with every effort to promote the sale of victory bonds and war savings certificates.

If we are bankrupting the nation, is it not indeed a strange type of bankruptcy? How can we use such a term to describe the process under which this country has doubled its national income in three years, has wiped out unemployment, has multiplied its production of many things and learned many types of new skills; has expanded and diversified the production equipment, has multiplied its governmental revenues by more than four times, has enabled millions of its citizens to acquire a nest egg for the future, has mobilized its full strength as a producing machine, and has developed a sense of productive achievement not hitherto known?"

And then the hon. member for Winnipeg North Centre goes on:

Then came this really telling sentence from the Minister of Finance, and I can tell him I have quoted it on the hustings wherever I have gone: "No country goes bankrupt in this way; no country goes bankrupt by increasing its production and devoting part or all, or more than all, of that increase to a supreme cause."

And then the hon. member for Winnipeg North Centre quotes the minister again:

Later in the same speech the minister said:

"Let those of us who are inclined to fear the economic consequences of our war expenditures remember that these expenditures have developed and brought to light an enormous increase in our Canadian capacity to produce-an increase greater than any of us had ever before suspected."

My plea to the minister is that he launch forth upon a program of building houses for our Canadian people in the same way as he launched into a program of producing war goods. If he did so I suggest we would have the same results. Instead cf bankrupting the nation or leaving us with financial problems we could not carry, such a policy would bring about an enormous increase in our capacity to produce. It would reveal all sorts of associated fields in which people could be employed, and the total result would be a tremendous improvement in the economic position of the entire country and of all our people.

After that, the record reads:

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December 18, 1957