The hon. gentleman cannot mention the name of an expert workman from Canada working on the international bridge wdio was deported. Why, they have only begun to work on the American side of that bridge within the last mouth. This all shows that hon. gentlemen opposite in order to make a point if possible against the government, will endeavour to garble the facts. I happen to know that the international bridge has not been built to the international channel until the last month. It is not all completed yet. They have just begun at the drawbridge there lately. There has never been an expert Canadian w-ho worked on the international bridge deported even by Mr. DeBarry, who has been the most effective officer in the United States service so far as .
deporting aliens is concerned. The Canadian Alien Labour law is, with slight exceptions, a verbatim copy of the United States Alien Labour law. The greatest difficulty that has arisen hitherto in regard to the enforcement of the Canadian Alien Labour law has been by reason of the very active operations of Mr. DeBarry, of Buffalo. We do not hear any complaint about it between Detroit and Windsor. We do not hear any complaint about it between the town of Niagara Falls on the Canadian side, and the city of Niagara Falls on the American side. I have heard something to-night about Prescott. I know nothing about the St. Lawrence district, but I venture to say that east of British Columbia, Mr. DeBarry the United States official has created more difficulty in regard to the operation of the Alien Labour law than any other one man either in the United States or Canada, by reason of his very great industry. He appears to be supported by the labour unions in the city of Buffalo, and he has continually and deliberately violated the Alien Labour law of the United States. He has exceeded the duty imposed upon him by the law of the United States. I know that he has taken Canadians who have gone to the United States and sent them back, just as illegally as he would take me or any other hon. member of this House by the shoulder and send us back. He has done it in violation of the Act, by reason of the pressure brought to bear upon him by the labour unions of the city of Buffalo. However, it has been done, in the county I have the honour to represent, it has created a good deal of friction. It was used as a political influence against me in the last election. It was said that I was not doing my duty to the labouring men, although I showed the people that I had been doing my duty. My opponent endeavoured to convince the public that the government had not been doing its duty-that it had put a law on the statute-book, and had not been endeavouring to enforce it. So far as I am concerned, I desire to see the Alien Labour law of this country enforced, and enforced properly in the interest of the public.
There are cases when it is in the interest of the Canadian people themselves that aliens should be employed in this country. There are occasions when you cannot get in this country the labouring men to do the work which you want done. There are occasions arising continually when you need employees whom you cannot get here, and it is necessary to get them in another country. Consequently, we have to be exceedingly careful in placing a law on the statute-book which will affect the rights of the public, as an Alien Labour law will affect those rights if improperly drawn and improperly carried out.
I am inclined to think the law as it at present stands will bear amendment. I had intended to propose an amendment myself,
and I am not certain that before this session is over 1 shall not do so, except that I hear from the government to-night that they desire that these matters shall stand over for a time, as they contemplate proposing a policy which they think may be satisfactory to the House. I am willing to bide my time and see what the proposition of the government is. If they bring down a Bill which is satisfactory, I shall be prepared to support it. If they bring down a Bill which is not satisfactory, I will rise in my place and to the best of my ability endeavour to make it satisfactory, at any rate, to me and the people whom I have the honour to represent. There is one respect in which, I think, the Alien Labour law can very properly be amended. The law at present is that you cannot contract outside the country ; that
is, you cannot bring into this country aliens under contract made outside of the country. Men attempt to violate that law by telling employees to come to Canada and they will employ them here. If that objection can be got over, the law as it stands is as perfect as any Alien Labour law you can have. We have officers throughout the country with intelligence to enforce the law. I think possibly it might be made a little more elastic than it is ; it probably will be ; but I can say that the Alien Labour law as it stands to-day on the statute-book has been effective. It has been enforced wherever any gentleman has endeavoured to enforce
it, and it has been a great benefit to the people of the country wherever they desired to take the benefit of it. It can be improved, but without improvement it is exceedingly better than anything hon. gentlemen opposite ever gave to the people of this country.
Topic: DAVID MILLS.