April 4, 1949 (20th Parliament, 5th Session)


Douglas Charles Abbott (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)


Mr. Abbott:

No. We make no distinction between the parties as far as telegrams are concerned. I suggest, however, that perhaps there is some advantage in not making it too easy to send telegrams because some people will send telegrams when an airmail letter will do perfectly well. It is a little easier to send a telegram, and perhaps a little more impressive, but very often the matter is not so urgent that an airmail letter would not do the trick. In the interests of economy and keeping down expenses, I do not think one should encourage the sending of telegrams from members of parliament or anyone else. There is a very real deterrent if a man has to pay for his own telegrams. I must say, however, that if a department sends a telegram to a member of parliament I would think, speaking generally, that it should be prepaid. If they feel that a telegram is not required and send a letter, that is all right; but I think as a general rule telegrams from departments should not be sent collect to members of parliament unless the member of parliament has so requested.

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