February 17, 1932 (17th Parliament, 3rd Session)


Edward James Young


Mr. E. J. YOUNG (Weyburn):

Mr. Speaker, I am opposed to the principle of taking money out of the public treasury and giving it either to individuals or to corporations. I am opposed because such action is unsound in principle, and because when once that practice is started it is almost impossible to treat everybody alike. When the government has chosen to take that course however I suggest to them that the only thing to do is as nearly as possible to treat everybody alike.
Last year when the proposal to grant a bonus of 5 cents a bushel on all wheat grown in the western provinces was before the house, I attempted to point out to the government that the scheme was bound to work out inequitably, that those who had a large crop would receive a large bonus while those
Farm Relief-Mr. Young

who had no crop would receive no bonus but would have to help to pay the bonus to their more fortunate neighbours. The request for a bonus of one dollar per acre seeded last year has arisen as a direct result of the policy of paying 5 cents per bushel on all wheat grown in the western provinces. Those farmers in the dried-out districts are saying, "We are helping to pay the 5 cent per bushel bonus to all those in the north who have had good crops, whereas we are deriving nothing, and have had no crops." The farmers of the dried-out districts in southern Saskatchewan are to-day suffering more from the depression than any other class of people in Canada. Not only do they suffer, but they are in the unfortunate position of having reaped no harvests for one, two or in some cases three years. For the work they have done during that time they have received no wages. They are practically all on relief. In spite of the fact however that they are the chief sufferers and those who stand in greatest need of relief, they constitute the only class in the Dominion of Canada on relief to-day who are required to sign a note for everything they receive. Every other class receives relief as a gift, but the farmers in the dried-out areas, the chief sufferers, get nothing as a gift but must sign a note in blank and in advance for everything they have received or expect to receive. I have the note here; I will read it:
I, the above named applicant
hereby faithfully promise and agree to pay to The Saskatchewan Relief Commission on behalf of His Majesty the King in the right of the Dominion of Canada, on or before the first day of November, A.D. 1933, the full value of all relief now or subsequently obtained by me from The Saskatchewan Relief Commission at the values or prices stated by the said commission.
This form has to 'be signed and witnessed by every man when he makes application for relief. All the relief that he receives will be charged against that note at prices to be fixed by the commission.

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