31st Parliament, 1st Session

L035 - Mon 31 Oct 1977 / Lun 31 oct 1977

The House met at 2 p.m.


Mr. S. Smith: By your leave, sir, I am rising to request unanimous consent from members of the House to present a resolution worded: “That we resolve that in the light of the deep concern of members of all parties about the actions of the RCMP in raiding the headquarters of a legitimate political party, the Legislature of Ontario express its abhorrence at this fundamental breach of civil liberties and request that the government express this sentiment to the government of Canada.”

I realize it is out of order to present this, sir, and that I have not given the required notice, but I would request unanimous consent of members of the House to have this resolution presented and voted upon.

Mr. Speaker: Well, of course, the Speaker is in the hands of the House. As the hon. Leader of the Opposition has said, it is out of order and it can be accepted only by unanimous consent of the House. If we don’t have unanimous consent, I’m afraid it is not possible to entertain such a motion.

Some hon. members: No.



Hon. Mr. McMurtry: Mr. Speaker, as members will recall, there have been some questions recently about the legal opinion requested by the Premier (Mr. Davis) in relation to Bill 101 of the National Assembly of Quebec, otherwise known as “The Charter of the French Language.”

In view of the questions asked of the Premier and the interest expressed by members in this matter, I wish to provide this House with an opinion of the law officers of the Crown in Ontario as to the provisions of Bill 101 which in our view are ultra vires, or beyond the authority of the National Assembly of Quebec.

“The Charter of the French Language” in Quebec, as members will recall, was first introduced as Bill 1 of the National Assembly of Quebec for 1977. Subsequently, it was withdrawn and reintroduced as Bill 101 with some changes and rearrangements.

It is our view that the charter as enacted by the National Assembly is not in excess of the legal powers of the province as a whole. However, certain of the individual provisions of the charter are, in the opinion of the law officers of the Crown, beyond Quebec’s authority. These individual provisions, however, may be severed from the main charter. Their suggested invalidity does not appear to be a ground for holding the bill to be ultra vires as a whole.

The charter is divided into five titles, each containing chapters on different topics.

Mr. Speaker: Order, there are too many undercurrents in the chamber.

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: The invalid provisions are contained in title I, entitled “Status of Quebec for 1977.” Subsequently, it was titled “The Office de la Langue Française and Francization.”

Title I, as I indicated, deals with the status of the French language, and chapter I under that title provides “French is the official language of Quebec”. Chapter II declares certain “Fundamental Language Rights” with respect to the use of the French language. Neither of these chapters has any direct operative legal effect, being only declaratory in substance. They are given legal operation by chapters III to IX of this title.

The provisions of chapter III on “The Language of the Legislature and the Courts” are, in our view, ultra vires to the extent they are inconsistent with section 133 of the British North America Act.

Chapter III provides that “French is the language of the Legislature and the courts in Quebec”; legislative bills shall be drafted, tabled, passed and assented to in French; only the French text is official; and corporations addressing themselves to the courts and statutory tribunals, and procedural documents issued by those bodies, shall be in French. These provisions all appear to be repugnant to the requirements of section 133 of the British North America Act that the records and journals of the Houses and the Legislature of Quebec shall be in English and in French, and that either language may be used by any person in the courts in Quebec.

The provisions of chapter VI on “The Language of Labour Relations” are, in our view, ultra vires to the extent that they apply to collective agreements and to employment by operators of works or undertakings or persons carrying on business within the exclusive legislative authority of Parliament, for example, interprovincial railways and banks.

The provisions of chapter VII, “The Language of Commerce and Business” are, in our view also ultra vires to the extent that they apply to federal works, undertakings or businesses if they are interpreted to require federally incorporated companies to have French names. To the extent that they are interpreted to go beyond regulation of merely local businesses and trade and extend to interprovincial or international trade, they may also be ultra vires.

Title II: “The Office de Langue Française and Francization.” The provisions of chapter V entitled “Francization of Business Firms” (as now contained in Bill 101) are ultra vires in their application to the operators of federal works and undertakings or the carrying on of federally regulated businesses.

In other respects the provisions of the charter, including those relating to “The Language of Instruction,” appear, in our view, to be within the powers of the Legislature of Quebec.

I would like to state in closing that the opinion herein expressed appears to accord broadly with the views of the law officers of the federal Crown as summarized in the Prime Minister’s statement of the “Position of the federal government with regard to Quebec’s Bill 101 ‘Charter of the French Language,’” made public on October 6, 1977.



Mr. S. Smith: A question for the Attorney General, Mr. Speaker: Can the Attorney General tell us what purpose has been served by having this legal opinion and what the follow-up will now be since there are certain provisions which, he says, in Bill 101 are ultra vires? What action did he ever think the provincial government would be able to take in obtaining this particular legal opinion, and what action is the provincial government going to take now that it has this presumably costly legal opinion which he has just read out to us?

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: Mr. Speaker, you will recall that many weeks ago the Premier indicated his intention to seek an opinion from the law officers of the Crown in Ontario, and the opinion that has been given is from the law officers of the Crown in Ontario. I have some difficulty in understanding why it was necessary for the Leader of the Opposition to suggest it was a costly opinion, although I would indicate that it was an opinion given by some very distinguished public servants in this province.

It would be quite improper of me to attribute any specific motives or to inquire into the mind of the Premier when he, as the leader of the government of this province, indicated to the Legislature that this was the course of action that he had embarked upon. I do recall there was a great deal of concern expressed by members in this Legislature, both within this chamber and outside, with respect to some of the provisions of this bill, particularly as they might apply to citizens of Ontario moving to Quebec.

Obviously, for example, the language of instruction was an area in which there was a great deal of concern.

I’m rather surprised that the Leader of the Opposition would quarrel at this time with the fact that the opinion of the public servants of this province has been delivered to this Legislature, because he himself, through his office, has been inquiring of our office in the past weeks as to just what that opinion was.


Mr. S. Smith: I have a supplementary, Mr. Speaker. I also asked the Attorney General what action the provincial government intends to take. Do I take it that it is the Attorney General’s opinion that the law should be challenged in some way in the courts by some level of government, and is that the opinion which he will express, either on his own behalf or express to other levels of government?

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: Mr. Speaker, when Bill 101 was reintroduced in the assembly in Quebec, there was some concern expressed as to whether or not the federal government, with its powers, should refer the matter directly to the Supreme Court of Canada. If the federal government had chosen to pursue that course of action then the provinces would have had the right to intervene and be represented at the Supreme Court of Canada level.

The provinces have no such right to refer the legislation of another province directly to the Supreme Court of Canada, as I know is appreciated by the Leader of the Opposition. So, at the time the opinion was ordered, we did not know what the position of the federal government was going to be as to whether there would be a direct constitutional reference to the Supreme Court of Canada or whether it was going to allow the matter to be argued in the lower courts of that province, as is often the case with most legislation.

All I can say at this time, the federal government in its wisdom having chosen to adopt this course of action --

Mr. S. Smith: Are you advising them?

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: -- I don’t think there’s any particular useful advice that I, as Attorney General of this province, at least, intend to offer the Prime Minister of Canada at this point in time in relation to his decision with respect to not challenging the legislation directly in the Supreme Court of Canada by constitutional reference.

Mr. Lewis: Supplementary: Since the insight and intelligence of our senior public servants lose some of their natural genius in the simple banal expression in this document of whether or not something is ultra vires, could the Attorney General perhaps table the background materials and cases on which these particular findings were based and the interpretation which accompanies them, I assume?

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: No, Mr. Speaker, I can’t undertake to do that simply because it’s been the practice for many years in this province not to table opinions that are given by law officers of the Crown to the government. I think it’s a practice that should be followed because I think it’s important that they feel in no way -- well, I think they should be encouraged to give the best possible opinion, in the first instance, in a way which is confidential in order to encourage a free flow of opinion. In certain areas, not so much in this particular area, but obviously many of these areas are of a highly controversial nature. I think it’s a practice that should be followed.

Mr. Lewis: It is a statement of such depth and rare insight, I thought there must be some substance.

Mr. S. Smith: Supplementary: Since the Attorney General now says that he has this legal opinion and sees no point to him as Attorney General urging the federal government to take any particular course of action, is he aware that the Premier, when he announced this seeking of legal opinion, said: “It would be our expectation that the federal government would be prepared to initiate such a challenge should they have an opinion which deems its provisions to be unconstitutional”? Now that there is such an opinion, which his officers have prepared, is he prepared to urge the federal government to challenge this legislation since some of these provisions seem to be deemed to be unconstitutional?

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: Again, I am not privy to any conversations that may well have taken place between the Prime Minister of Canada and the Premier of Ontario preceding the announcement of the federal government’s intention, and I think any such question should be directed to the Premier.

Mr. Speaker: The hon. member for -- Lakeshore with a supplementary.

Mr. Lawlor: Lakeshore. We have met before, Mr. Speaker.

Hon. Mr. Rhodes: He is trying to forget

Mr. Lewis: A former colleague of yours, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Lawlor: Does the Attorney General intend to take intervener proceedings in the one or more actions which are being pursued in the lower courts at the present time; that is the courts below the Supreme Court of Canada, which are considered lower --

Mr. Lewis: By the puisne judges.

Mr. Lawlor: Yes, the puisne judges -- in the province of Quebec or elsewhere? The Attorney General can intervene. Would he do so?

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: No, we cannot intervene in the lower courts.


Mr. S. Smith: I have a new question -- again, though, to the Attorney General: In view of the actions which came to light on Friday and on the weekend, the RCMP having raided the headquarters of a legitimate political party, and in view of the abhorrence which I am sure all members of the House feel regarding that and the threat to civil liberties that is represented therein, will the Attorney General give the House some chance to express itself or will he express on behalf of all of us to the federal government the severe way in which we in this House regard this very unfortunate and, to my way of belief, very dangerous breach of fundamental civil liberties?

Will he convey this message in one way or another, or give us a chance to convey it, to the federal government and to all involved, and can he tell us whether or not he intends to release the report of a special Ontario Police Commission investigation of the Praxis break in?

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: Dealing first with the second part or really what was a separate question by the Leader of the Opposition, I wish to assure the House that when we have a final report, I will certainly be releasing the relevant contents of the report to the House; the findings that have been made by the Ontario Police Commission.

In relation to the concern expressed by the Leader of the Opposition in relation to the news reports of the reported break-in by the RCMP into the Parti Québecois headquarters in the province of Quebec, all I can say is that of course I share the concern of the Leader of the Opposition, but certainly I don’t think I am in a position to either assist or hinder the other members of the House from expressing a similar view.

Mr. S. Smith: By way of supplementary, since the Attorney General mentions that he will let us have the complete or final report regarding the Praxis break-in at some point, and since he now has some preliminary report, can he assure this House that there were not illegalities committed by the RCMP or Metro police in that Praxis break-in, based on the preliminary report that he already has?

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: First of all, I want to make it quite clear that I don’t intend to table the complete report as a police report because, for example, the preliminary report contains many statements based on hearsay and unfounded allegations. As a matter of fact -- well, I don’t think I wish to pursue that but, yes, I certainly will advise the members of the House as to the conclusions of the report.

I can state quite emphatically that, on the basis of the interim report I have received, there is no evidence whatsoever of the involvement of any police force -- RCMP, Metro Toronto Police department or any other police department -- in this break-in.

Mr. Samis: Supplementary: Since the minister’s statements regarding Bill 101 have a very obvious political consequence in Quebec that we will all see tomorrow, doesn’t he think it would be advisable in the interests of national unity that he would make an equally strong statement on this violation of human rights in Quebec to show his concern for the Quebec people?

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: I am not sure that I followed the question in its entirety. I assume the question was directed towards the reported RCMP break-in. I thought I made myself quite clear. The Leader of the Opposition expressed his concern in a very definite fashion, and I thought I made it quite clear that I share his concern.

Mr. Samis: Is the minister going to issue a separate statement of his own?

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: I am sorry, I didn’t catch that.

Mr. Lewis: May I ask a supplementary? I want to come to this more particularly with the Solicitor General in a moment. But perhaps I can ask the Attorney General, does he not think that it might be appropriate for the senior provincial law officer of the Crown in this province and, therefore, of any of the other provinces in a sense, to request of the federal government, an actual inquiry into what occurred? Has it occurred to him to request of the federal government some indication of the RCMP’s activities in this province? Does he feel himself sufficiently apprised of what they are about in the province of Ontario?

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: Yes, I do. I think the leader of the New Democratic Party is quite correct when he suggests that some of these questions should be directed to the Solicitor General. I can say that I have been party to ongoing discussions between other provincial Attorneys General and the federal Solicitor General and the federal Minister of Justice. I must state that insofar as RCMP operations are concerned in this province I have found they have been most co-operative in advising us at any given time what the nature of their operations is. The relationship in this province, quite frankly, has been somewhat better than the relationship that has existed in other provinces. I think this has something to do with the commanding officer in this province. Hopefully, the relationship, which has been a very good one during the two years that I have served in my present capacity, will continue. But it is one that must continue to be of concern to all of us.


Mr. Lewis: A question of the Solicitor General: Rumour has it from usually reliable sources that there has been a significant jump in the RCMP staff complement in the Metropolitan Toronto area over the last four or five years. By significant, I mean double or treble what it was in 1972. Has that been brought to the attention of the Solicitor General? Is that valid, and if so, what are they doing?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: Yes, I think that is correct. I don’t have the exact figures on the various strengths of the RCMP, but it is noted by us with some -- I guess reserve is the best word --

Mr. Lewis: Some what?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: -- reserve by the Ontario Provincial Police that perhaps the RCMP is expanding when we are trying to hold the OPP at its present strength for the various reasons we all know about here.

Mr. MacDonald: Are they filling the gap?

Mr. Warner: They may visit your office.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: Let me continue. As the Attorney General has said, we have close co-operation with the RCMP. By way of goodwill, I have toured their establishment down there. They invited me and they explained some of their operations to me. It went further than just a social visit. I am not suggesting that I know all that they are doing in the area of the security of Canada. That is still their prime concern and they are carrying on in that responsibility, but again, I believe, with close co-operation with our Metropolitan Toronto police as well as our OPP. We have engaged in a great many joint force operations in the way of organized crime, as I have reported to this House.

I have had no incidents brought to my attention where either the Metro police or the OPP have been concerned with the manner of their operations in any way. As I say, I do know that they have increased their force considerably and that they are getting perhaps into other fields, such as organized crime, with our encouragement and cooperation. But as to what all the additional strength they have today that they didn’t have three or four years ago is being used for, I don’t have that breakdown.


Mr. Lewis: Supplementary: Could the minister check out and advise the House whether it is true that they’ve jumped in complement from some 200 or 250 in 1972 to between 600 and 800 in 1977 -- actual officers involved? And could he perhaps find out what the extent of responsibility and activity is?

Perhaps some of us, in the light of recent events, would feel a little better if the indigenous police forces, the Metro police force and the OPP, seemed to have the upper hand. That goes right back to the days when Arthur Wishart was reassuring us during the War Measures Act. It would be useful if the minister could report to the House.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: I’ll be glad to attempt to get that information. I don’t believe it will be regarded by them as confidential, but subject to that, I’ll do my best anyway to get the information.

Mr. Lewis: If they regard you as left of centre, anything will be confidential.

Mr. Breithaupt: Supplementary: When the Solicitor General is obtaining that information, will he also attempt to obtain for us, the changes in the force which have resulted from differing responsibilities in matters of immigration and drug control?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: That will be included.


Mr. Lewis: Could I ask in the broadest sense for the Premier to comment on the discussions he has had with a delegation from Sudbury over the Inco matter and any further substance he would wish to bring to the attention of the House?

Hon. Mr. Davis: Yes, Mr. Speaker. I guess one might refer to it as the Sudbury committee -- it was in to see me this morning. It is made up of the chairman of the region, the mayor of Sudbury, representatives of the unions of the labour congress, and the Chamber of Commerce.

Mr. Nixon: Not Elmer Sopha?

Hon. Mr. Davis: No, I don’t believe that the former member for Sudbury was there. And knowing him as well as I do, if he had been I could not have forgotten his presence. Mr. Sopha was not there.

They put before us, I thought, a very constructive and creative series of suggestions. They didn’t relate to the specifics of Inco in terms of the layoff. The meeting really was based on what they felt they could do with government help, et cetera, in terms of assuring the longer term future of the community. I think they had eight or nine different questions they wished to raise with us. Two or three of them, I thought, were quite positive in terms of having practical application fairly shortly.

I told the chairman of the region and the other members of the delegation that the government would review these immediately to see what we could do to react to them. There was one suggestion, as I recall it, that related to the establishment of some form of ongoing committee or task force, where they asked for some provincial involvement and federal government involvement. This would relate to the longer term economic prospects of the Sudbury basin.

I thought that this was helpful. They wished to chair this particular task force if it were established. There was also some discussion, but we didn’t bring it to any sort of conclusion as to the possibility of transporting workers from Inco to the potential jobs in Elliot Lake. I think the union representatives there didn’t wish to pursue that at this moment until some of their discussions with Inco on other matters were resolved. So it was put on the table, but I think it was agreed that for the next few days it wouldn’t be moved into any area of finality at all.

There was a suggestion as well with respect to one or two other parts of provincial government involvement. The question of location of government offices and so on. I’m sure the leader of the New Democratic Party is familiar with a number of these suggestions and I have undertaken with the chairman of the region to get back to him and his committee just as soon as possible. I found it a very positive and constructive sort of meeting in light of all of the circumstances, and we will be pursuing it with them just as soon as we can.

Mr. Lewis: By way of supplementary, does the Premier know, or did he realize, that as recently as yesterday, the senior vice-president of Inco, Dr. Walter Curlook, minored not at all the confidence and assurance that the Premier put to the House on Friday after his discussion with the chairman of the board, about the future of Inco in Sudbury, and would make no commitments at all about the maintenance of the work force and what might happen in 1978? Has the Premier’s office progressed any further with that?

Hon. Mr. Davis: In pursuing that, I have a statement made by the same doctor in an exclusive interview with the Toronto Star which appeared on Saturday. He made a statement on Saturday afternoon in which he dealt with this matter and I think the point made in the interview, or at least what was reported, was the question of the layoffs here and the question of possible layoffs in Guatemala and Indonesia.

The same Dr. Walter Curlook indicated that the decision with respect to Inco’s operation here did not relate to the situation in either Guatemala or Indonesia. I think he has suggested that -- as with some of us on occasion -- the full import of what he was saying did not, perhaps, reflect itself with total accuracy in the interview that I read in, I think, Saturday’s Toronto Star.

Mr. Kerrio: Supplementary: In regard to the grave situation that exists, was there any indication by a senior Inco official that the jobs were protected in Guatemala and Indonesia for fear of nationalization of the mines there, and that no such fear exists here?

Hon. Mr. Davis: I rather think this was in the article by the same gentleman, although I may be wrong. And as I say, I have a copy because I was concerned about the statement that Dr. Curlook gave to CFTO and the Toronto Star on Saturday afternoon. In that statement he makes it very clear that the two were not related.

Mr. Lewis: Does the Premier have a timetable for getting back to the region of Sudbury on the various particulars they raised with him? Is there a date at which he will inform them of procedures?

Hon. Mr. Davis: We didn’t say yes, by this Wednesday or Thursday, but I told them that we would pursue it as rapidly as possible, although I know that in the context of some issues some members will say that could mean weeks or months. I would assure members of the House in the context of this particular issue that when I say as rapidly as possible, that would be the precise interpretation that should be given to that phrase.

Mr. Breithaupt: Supplementary: Since the Premier has said that the items were not apparently related, would the Premier, in reviewing an article in Forbes magazine, dated October 1, 1977, inquire of Mr. Chuck Baird, apparently the president -- who was quoted to have said, “If Inco is forced to cut future production, Carter, the Inco chairman, will probably choose to do so in Canada, which on the surface seems illogical because Canadian nickel is cheaper to mine. The problem is that less pure nickel from laterite mines has more customer appeal; besides, governments like Indonesia do not look kindly on cutbacks in their countries.”

Hon. Mr. Davis: I would be delighted to check this out. There have been a number of statements made to a number of various publications. While I am prepared to check out this particular statement -- it has been raised here before by one of the members from Sudbury, as a matter of fact -- I think that, hopefully, by Thursday when the leaders meet we will, as I have indicated, have some terms of reference for the standing resources development committee.

Mr. Lewis: Seriously -- the House leader?

Hon. Mr. Davis: The House leaders.

Mr. Lewis: Oh, good.

Hon. Mr. Davis: Matters of this kind are very relevant issues for the resources development committee to raise, and I would hope the terms of reference would allow that sort of question.

However, I would be delighted to check out Mr. Baird’s statement for the hon. member for Kitchener. As I say, I have been dealing primarily with Mr. Carter and two other senior people from Inco and there may be some contradictions on occasion; I don’t know; but I will do my best to clarify them for the understanding of members of the House.

Mr. Breithaupt: I should correct my question to the effect that while the view of the writer of the article who was interviewing these gentlemen was as said by me, it may not have been the exact comment of Mr. Baird.

Mr. Speaker: Before we get to new questions, I’m going to recognize the hon. Chairman of Management Board with an answer to a question asked previously.


Hon. Mr. Auld: I believe on Thursday afternoon the hon. member for London North (Mr. Van Horne) inquired of the House leader (Mr. Welch) if there was an explanation that can be offered to this House for the increase in the Education estimates which were debated and approved, at least by committee, an increase between the end of June and the end of September of some $103 million.

The amount that is shown in the comparative performance budgetary expenditure quarterly reports tabled on September 30 is just that. It’s an outline of performance, or an estimate. Actually, it shows the anticipated changes in revenue and expenditures. That amount in education is primarily the amount that the latest actuarial report on the teachers’ superannuation fund showed was in arrears, about $106 million. That is again an estimate. We haven’t got the final figure, but I would expect when that figure has been produced, the amount that is required, less any amounts of underspending in the ministry, will be dealt with by the minister in supplementary estimates.

Mr. Van Horne: I would ask, then, in the light of the minister’s reply: Does the amount of money that was indicated in the estimates

-- that is, the amount of $105,245,000 -- really now total $208 million?

Hon. Mr. Auld: Would the hon. member repeat that? I wasn’t keeping track of the figures.

Mr. Van Horne: The earlier estimate was $105,245,000. This is on vote 3003 in the supplementary. I’m asking the minister, should that figure now be $208 million?

Hon. Mr. Auld: Approximately.

Mr. Van Horne: A further supplementary, if I might: In the light of this, I find it rather disturbing because if we multiplied it out for the time remaining in the year, we could come up with an additional $200 million or $300 million.

Mr. Speaker: I don’t hear a question yet.

Mr. Van Horne: The question is: Does the minister perceive a need for an annual actuarial valuation rather than a valuation every three years?

Hon. Mm. Auld: I guess that question should properly be directed to the Minister of Education (Mr. Wells). But various funds have various dates for actuarial updating, if I can put it that way, and in the past I think the time spans have been correct. However, one of the reasons that the royal commission has been set up to look into pension funds -- and we’re making some internal studies ourselves -- is that the rate of inflation, the very large annual increases in salaries, and the fact that in the teachers’ case their pensions are based on their best seven years have meant a very large increase in the unfunded liability, which happens every time there’s a salary increase.

Mr. Lewis: You are just impossible.

Hon. Mm. Auld: So it may well be that we should be looking at more frequent actuarial studies.

Mr. Lewis: That’s why they call you Mikoyan, you will be here forever.


Mrs. Campbell: Mr. Speaker, my question is to the Minister of Transportation and Communications. In view of tomorrow’s Metro council meeting to discuss transit fares, will the minister now tell us whether the provincial subsidy is conditional on the 70 per cent fare box rate? In other words, what objection does he have to letting Metro decide itself, in these days when we want more autonomy for our municipality, what proportion of TTC costs will be borne by the municipal taxpayer and what amount will be covered by the fare box?


Hon. Mr. Snow: I’m happy to clarify what appears to be some kind of an uncertainty in certain people’s minds as to the conditions of the provincial subsidy. First of all, to answer the hon. member’s second question, I have no objection whatsoever to Metro council’s deciding how it wishes to raise its share of the cost of operating the TTC.

The suggested target for Metropolitan Toronto is that 72.5 per cent of operating revenue should be raised in the fare box. We establish our subsidy based on 50 per cent of that remaining above the target, which is 13¾ per cent of total operating cost. In addition to that, there are two or three other subsidies available to municipalities under certain circumstances, one being the start-up cost of a major new facility. There is considerable additional money going to Metro this year and for the next three years to pay the additional start-up costs for the Spadina subway until it matures.

In addition to that, there are some other smaller amounts that are available to municipalities -- I don’t believe it affects Metro -- where there is a growth rate above a certain percentage or where new routes are established. Actually, it works out this year, I believe, that with the additional subsidies our subsidy will be about 15 per cent of the total operating cost of the TTC, that is, the 13¾ per cent plus the additional qualifications under other provisions of the guidelines.

That is not a conditional grant. It is paid to the municipality of Metropolitan Toronto. The only condition is that that grant cannot be more than 75 per cent of its total operating deficit. In other words, I can think of a smaller municipality that raises about 80 per cent of its operating costs out of the fare box, that municipality would have a target of 50 per cent. If we were to pay 25 per cent, which would be the standard grant for that municipality, the grant plus its fare box revenue would be more than the operating costs. In that case, our grant cannot be more than 65 per cent of the deficit. Other than that, there is no condition.

Mrs. Campbell: Supplementary: I take it that what the minister is saying -- and am I correct in taking this -- that he is basing his performance, as it were, upon that formula but not necessarily determining that this is the formula that the Metropolitan government must take in order to finance its operation. If the minister is saying that, how can he then provide us with the kind of definition of his financial responsibility, except as it relates to that percentage?

I’m sorry if I haven’t followed the minister but I don’t understand him. He can say that his formula is based upon that percentage and, if it is, then is he not indirectly dictating to Metro how it is going to raise its funds?

Hon. Mr. Snow: No, I don’t believe we are dictating at all. As I have stated, our basic formula operating subsidy for Metropolitan Toronto is 13.75 per cent of total operating costs. That is payable.

To get into another example, in a municipality that has a population of under 100,000 its target is 50 per cent. In that case, we pay 25 per cent of its operating costs. There are many of those municipalities that do not meet the 50 per cent target from the fare box, my own being one, but may get 35 per cent or 40 per cent of their operating costs out of the fare box. We still pay the 25 per cent. The municipal council involved makes the decision as to how that is made up.

Ms. Bryden: Supplementary: I would like to ask the minister whether he thinks that a subsidy of 13.75 per cent, or even 15 per cent, in Metro Toronto, is adequate to implement the provincial commitment which it made three or four years ago to shift the emphasis from roads to public transit and, in the long run, to save money on roads and reduce the congestion and the pollution in the big cities?

Hon. Mr. Snow: Yes, Mr. Speaker, I think that it is most reasonable and that it meets our objective of giving a great deal higher emphasis to public transit. I believe our transit operating subsidies this year will be something in the neighbourhood of $60 million, which is about eight to nine per cent above those of last year.

Mr. Warner: How much is for roads and how much for highways?

Hon. Mr. Snow: At the same time, there is no increase this year in moneys available for municipal road construction, although there will be a modest increase in the moneys available for municipal road maintenance. I would point out that adequate maintenance of the municipal road system is equally important, if not more so, for the operation of a transit system as it is for the automobile. What the hon. member forgets is that the major portion of transit in the province of Ontario now, and perhaps for a great many years in the future, is and will be the bus which runs on roads.

Mr. Nixon: You must be building a model.

Mr. S. Smith: Supplementary: Is the minister prepared to say, in view of the debate going on in Metro and in the city and so on, that the government will pay 15 per cent of the operating expenses this year, we’ll set some other dollar figure in future years and how Metro chooses to raise the rest of the money is Metro’s business? Is he prepared to say that clearly so that everybody understands it in view of the impending debate in Metro Council?

Hon. Mr. Snow: Mr. Speaker, I don’t know how many times I have to say it --

Mrs. Campbell: Just say yes.

Mr. S. Smith: Say yes.

Hon. Mr. Snow: -- I’m not going to say 15 per cent, I’m going to say 13.75 per cent, which has been put in letter form to Chairman Godfrey and the TTC.

Mr. Warner: Get a new letter writer.

Hon. Mr. Snow: As far as I’m concerned, and I know as far as those gentlemen are concerned, there is no uncertainty about it. That is it.

Mr. S. Smith: That is it?

Hon. Mr. Snow: Yes.


Mr. Swart: I have a question of the Minister of Consumer and Commercial Relations. In the light of the letters tabled by him today from the coffee companies on coffee prices -- and he’s had some time to look at some of them -- has he checked the accuracy of the somewhat less than impartial information which he has received, and has he now questioned his colleague, the Minister of Correctional Services (Mr. Drea) on the information which led him to believe that his ministry was being ripped off at $2.94 a pound for the coffee?

Hon. Mr. Grossman: The answer to the second question is, no. The answer to the first question is that when I write major chains such as I have written and those chains are asked to respond to inquiries from the Minister of Consumer and Commercial Relations, I tend to accept the facts and figures they give me.

Mr. MacDonald: That’s what the Minister of Energy did with the oil companies for years. He was led up the garden path.

Hon. Mr. Grossman: The members may take exception to some of the backup explanations in the conclusions they draw --

Mr. Nixon: Your colleague says it’s a ripoff.

Hon. Mr. Grossman: -- but I accept the figures they have given me. I don’t question their accuracy on the face of them.

Mr. Swart: By way of supplementary, might it help the minister to change his mind about the accuracy if I pointed out that, from the few minutes that I have had to look at this, there’s an error in the letter which he received from General Foods. They say the wholesale price in the United States is $3.41 a pound, and say it was that for some period before. Yet during that period, I know that Mr. Divine, the manager of the northwestern New York Tops supermarket told me they were buying it from this company at $3.28 a pound. Is the minister aware now that his own information shows that from 1975 to 1977 Nescafé coffee went up in price from $1.33 to $4.39 and that that was a $3 increase?

Mr. Speaker: Order. The question has been asked.

Mr. Swart: But that coffee only went up $1.50 that was in that package?

Mr. Speaker: Order.

Hon. Mr. Grossman: I am no more prepared to say that General Foods Limited, in responding to me, is giving me incorrect information than I am prepared to say that the gentleman the member spoke to at Tops or whatever it is in Buffalo is giving him wrong information. He is reporting to me that someone has given him --

Mr. Warner: The new leader of corporate protection -- terrific.

Hon. Mr. Grossman: Does the member for Scarborough-Ellesmere want to listen and find out or does he want to just talk to the member for Welland-Thorold and see what he tells him?

Mr. Swart: We want you to find out.

Hon. Mr. Grossman: Perhaps the member would tell his colleagues to be quiet and they would hear the answer. I am no more prepared to say that one is lying than the other, although I suppose the member’s proclivity may be otherwise. If he wants to tell me that he has some information, hearsay though it may be, that someone else believes the wholesale price in New York was different, rather than splash out something that says, “I believe someone is lying” to me, I would be more than happy to write back to General Foods and say to them: “My colleague, Mr. Swart, informs me such and such. Would you care to comment?”

At the same time perhaps the member will be kind enough to write his friend at Tops discount in Buffalo and tell him what General Foods says and invite him to comment further.

Mr. Lewis: Just two months ago you were a heretic.

Mr. Philip: Supplementary: Can the minister inform the House why, if he is so open to impartial investigation, his investigators have not availed themselves of the information that the member for Welland-Thorold and I have collected, despite constant offers to make this information available to him? And can the minister inform us of the absence of any report from the AIB? Would he be willing to table the questions he’s asked from the AIB and their reply to ascertain whether or not they have in fact withheld information from his ministry?

Hon. Mr. Grossman: The answer is that the material was just distributed a few hours ago by my ministry and through sheer inadvertence, the AIB letter was not reproduced or distributed. I think it should be by now.


Mr. McKessock: Mr. Speaker, would it be possible to obtain a response from two ministers for my question?

Mr. Haggerty: You will probably get two different answers.

Mr. McKessock: I will direct my question to the Minister of Consumer and Commercial Relations, but I would also like to have a response from the Minister of Industry and Tourism (Mr. Bennett).

Mr. Lewis: Good luck.

Mr. McKessock: Is the Minister of Consumer and Commercial Relations aware that if a person who is running a successful tourist business obtains a resort liquor licence, he must close down his complete operation for at least two months each year to comply with the regulations?

Hon. Mr. Grossman: If the member would like to give me some specifics of the resort in question, I will see if I can find out what occurs in the circumstances.

Mr. McKessock: Supplementary: In view of the fact that either the Act or the regulations state that a resort operator must close down completely for two months to comply with the regulations, does the minister feel that this is fair in a province where we are trying to encourage tourism as a year-round business? If he does, I would like him to tell me why. If he doesn’t, I would like him to tell me when he would make the necessary changes to allow such an operator to close down only the liquor part of his business, and not the rest of the business for the two months, so that he will be able to carry on in a normal fashion.


Hon. Mr. Grossman: I will be happy to look into it and report back to the hon. member.

Mr. Lewis: Sure, you could send some letters out. You’re kind of the minister of collected correspondence, aren’t you?

Mr. McKessock: Could I ask the Minister of Industry and Tourism --

Mr. Speaker: You’re only entitled to one question at a time.

Mr. MacDonald: The minister is becoming the Dear Abby of Queen’s Park.

Hon. Mr. Grossman: I can’t solve your problems; forget it.

Mr. MacDonald: I don’t want you to. You are overburdened.

Mr. Lewis: You had a few radical twitches a few months ago. Boy, have they taken you in. What a transition!

Mr. Speaker: Order. The hon. member for Carleton East has the floor.


Ms. Gigantes: I have a question for the Minister of Energy. Is the minister now prepared to table the contract signed between Ontario Hydro and Gulf Minerals Canada Limited for the purchase of the 3.7 million pounds of yellowcake uranium for 1980 to 1985?

Hon. J. A. Taylor: No.

Mr. Lewis: Aha! Why not?

Hon. J. A. Taylor: Because, as I indicated previously, I am pursuing the procedure involved. I have half of the information. I am not prepared at this time to give a definitive answer in terms of the tabling.

Mr. Lewis: The minister usually works by halves. I am surprised.

Mr. Reed: Is there a contract or is it just in the minister’s head?

Hon. J. A. Taylor: I can assure the hon. member that I am not going to table my head in this Legislature.

Mr. Warner: Why not?

Mr. Reid: We won’t be able to tell the difference.

Mr. Breithaupt: Another empty answer.

Mr. Speaker: Order. The hon. Minister of Energy has the answer to two questions asked previously.


Hon. J. A. Taylor: On Monday, October 17, the member for Halton-Burlington (Mr. Reed) asked me in the Legislature how much had been spent this year on repairs at Nanticoke generating plant, the approximate percentage of those repairs underwritten by the equipment suppliers through warranty, and what percentage of the repair costs would be passed on to electric power consumers.

On July 31, 1974, seven months after the expiry of warranty, the No. 2 generator at Ontario Hydro’s Nanticoke power station was destroyed by fire. The fire was attributed to the malfunction of an end bell on the generator. Ontario Hydro had a fire insurance policy and a machinery breakdown policy on this unit, each subject to a $500,000 deductible clause. Hydro’s loss in consequence of this fire is therefore covered by the insurance and the cost of repairs is being paid by the insurance company, except for the deductible amounts and some items that were not insurable.

The estimated cost of repairs on No. 2 generator was $6,867,000; $5,046,000 was recoverable on the machinery breakdown insurance and a further $586,000 was recoverable on the fire insurance. Together, the insurance recovery amounts to $5,632,000 or 82 per cent of the loss. The other 18 per cent of the loss includes $500,000 deductible on each of the policies and $235,000 of uninsurable items.

In pursuing recovery of their loss from Howden and Parsons company, the insurance company will also seek recovery for Ontario Hydro of the $1,235,000. If this action is successful, then none of the loss occasioned by the No. 2 unit will be sustained by Hydro. If it is unsuccessful, then the cost to Ontario Hydro, and ultimately to its users, will be $1,235,000.

All other units at Nanticoke generating station, except No. 2, which was virtually replaced, are being modified. This work involves replacement of end bells, fittings of new wedges in the winding slots, and inspection and removal of cracks in the rotor forgings. This work is being carried out by Howden and Parsons coincident with overhaul and other work requiring shutdowns in order to minimize disruption of operations.

Up to the present time, Howden and Parsons have submitted no bills and no payments have been made to them in regard to these modifications.

Ontario Hydro’s position is that the equipment contained basic design faults and Hydro does not intend to pay for the corrections of these basic design faults regardless of whether the one-year guarantee period had or had not elapsed.

Mr. Reed: Supplementary: Do those figures include the cost of the replacement of the hangers which had crystallized and had to be replaced? And does the minister not think that a 12-month warranty on a piece of machinery of this magnitude is rather pathetic?

Hon. J. A. Taylor: I’ll check in connection with the hangers, because that’s a distinct problem, as the member appreciates. As to the length of the warranty, I gather that’s a common commercial practice, but I agree that it does seem limited in terms of the magnitude of the capital outlay.

Mr. S. Smith: Supplementary: Is the minister aware that the entire Bruce B heavy water plant carries with it only a 12-month warranty, and does he think that in view of that capital outlay, which is considerably more than the few million he is talking about, that Hydro has been lax in not obtaining proper warranty on behalf of the citizens of Ontario?

Hon. J. A. Taylor: Mr. Speaker, I think the Leader of the Opposition is again speaking in general terms. If he would be precise about the particular piece of equipment he is speaking of, regardless of the --

Mr. S. Smith: The whole thing.

Mr. Reed: The whole plant?

Mr. S. Smith: Twelve months.

Hon. J. A. Taylor: If you want to put a warranty on every item in your building -- all the labour and material -- then I think that’s a little ridiculous.

Mr. Warner: They should guarantee the minister for a year. With our luck we’d get a replacement.

Hon. J. A. Taylor: If the member is talking about the total cost -- $1.3 billion in terms of the two plants, B and D -- I think he’ll agree that you must specify in regard to the particular items that have no warranty.

Mr. S. Smith: Twelve months is the longest then. Check the contract.

Hon. J. A. Taylor: The hon. member doesn’t understand. I find it very difficult talking to him.

Mr. Speaker: Order, please. The minister has answered the initial supplementary and that’s sufficient. The hon. member for Sarnia with a new question.


Mr. Blundy: I have a question for the Minister of Consumer and Commercial Relations. What is the minister’s response to Professor Edward Belobaba’s article in the current issue of the Osgoode Hall Journal, in which he charges that Ontario’s consumer law is a name-only legislative gesture --

Mr. Samis: It is true.

Mr. Blundy: -- and that most consumers, including many judges, are unaware of the existence or scope of operation of the Business Practices Act because the government is distributing a four-page pamphlet on a limited basis instead of publicizing it properly?

Hon. Mr. Grossman: Firstly, the good professor -- to give him the benefit of the doubt -- has reacted a bit too much to some of the publicity that other jurisdictions take the pains of generating when they are doing only what my office does routinely every day, and that is effect a lot of restitution for consumers. Within our own office building, as a matter of fact, when they have people in who have been treated unfairly, they call in those persons who’ve dealt unfairly, have a long chat with them, point out what may have been wrong and invite them to consider, very carefully, making restitution to those who have been badly dealt with.

Ms. S. Smith: Why keep them secret?

Hon. Mr. Grossman: Where the businessman decides that it would be appropriate to rebate the money, some of the other jurisdictions, in similar circumstances, give out press releases as though an enormous accomplishment had been effected that particular day; therefore, there’s a lot of publicity given to that act.

The trade-off that you make for that is that it removes some of the motivation for that particular businessman to make the restitution, and it encourages more court actions as a result. The approach we take here is that the important thing is to get restitution for the aggrieved person. As we stand here, there may be several people over in my office who are, in fact, getting money back; and we are doing it without publicity so that the process can go on more easily, more swiftly and more efficiently.

Mr. Warner: I wouldn’t publicize what you do if I were you.

Hon. Mr. Grossman: Last year, for example, although the professor doesn’t refer to these figures, the ministry effected some $1.5 million worth of restitution to consumers. That’s something we have done mostly without publicity, because we have only issued press releases as a result of cease and desist orders and restitution that followed, but was not ordered by court actions.

Mr. S. Smith: The ministry hides its light under a bushel.

Hon. Mr. Grossman: So we take a bit different approach, but I think the lack of publicity towards the vast amounts of money we effect restitution of should not be confused with lack of efficiency.

Mr. Speaker: We have one minute left. Do you want a supplementary?

Mr. Blundy: A short supplementary, Mr. Speaker: In view of the minister’s statement that there are a great many settlements in this field, why does the ministry not publicize the Act more widely so that many people of Ontario who are not aware of it will be able to get some help from this Act?

Hon. Mr. Grossman: Subject to some budgetary restrictions we have, and that is something that is under active consideration. It’s a concern we have.



Hon. Mr. Welch moved that an order for the consideration of the report of the Select Committee on Highway Safety, which was tabled on October 17, 1977, be placed on the order paper for Thursday evening next, November 3.

Motion agreed to.


Hon. Mr. Auld on behalf of Hon. Mr. McKeough moved resolution No. 4.

Resolved: That the authority of the Treasurer of Ontario granted on March 31, 1977, to pay the salaries of the civil servants and other necessary payments pending the voting of supply for the period commencing April 1, 1977, be extended to March 31, 1978, such payments to be charged to the proper appropriation following the voting of supply.

Mr. Peterson: Mr. Speaker, speaking briefly to this matter, the government at this point is asking for supply for a five-month period. As we have debated on many occasions previous to this occasion, we don’t feel that five month’s supply is necessary at this time, but rather than create a major fuss we are going to support the motion at this time.

I think, however, it’s important to put on the record two or three things that we feel very strongly at this time. Here we are voting supply at the very last date possible; at the end of this month, we are voting for another five months. I think it is reasonable to expect, concomitant with some of the recommendations of my colleagues previously, that we can have supply for a three-month period. What this resolution necessarily implies is that we will probably not be back in this House until March, some five months from now. We think that’s far too long, and it relates very much to the number of days that this House sits and the number of hours that this House sits.

We think that it’s been very poorly organized in this last year, and to that end we share some of the views of the member for York South (Mr. MacDonald) in a speech that he made last week.

We come back here for a very short period of time during a year and we jam a whole bunch of things into a very compressed period. We’re sitting three nights a week, plus committees on Wednesdays. We’re always fighting for an extra day. We’re going to have a holiday next week on Friday because of Remembrance Day. We’re going to have to compact and readjust the sittings of this House to conform with the pressures of getting through this heavy legislative schedule.

In our judgement, it’s been very poorly handled. In our judgement, we should not be giving five months’ supply at this time. We should probably be giving something more like three months at a time so that these things can be kept under better legislative scrutiny.


We think at the very least this House should be called back sometime in February to get on with the business of this province. These matters have been discussed at great length.

Hon. Mr. Bennett: You won’t be going to Florida then.

Mr. Peterson: You’re going to Florida probably.

Mr. Nixon: The minister may be on the other side of the world, if we’re lucky.

Hon. Mr. Bennett: The oftener you do that the better for us.

Mr. Deputy Speaker: Order.

Mr. Breithaupt: You can go and take your barber with you.

Mr. Peterson: And your own personal sheriff and everything else.

These arguments have been made many times before. I just want to put on the record that we are not very happy about the way this has been organized. I would hope that the government House leader would take this under advisement when he is structuring the business for the next session. Our party hopes we are back early and that we can have a reasonable schedule so that things are accomplished sanely, intelligently and with more thought than one is able to provide in frequent circumstances under these compressed hearings when we’re constantly rushed to find a half-hour there, or 15 minutes here or there to make up the required number of sittings. When we’re only doing legislation one day a week, and that under great pressure, we think it’s incumbent upon the government House leader with the co-operation of our House leader and the New Democratic House leader, to work out a far more sane and intelligent schedule.

We don’t think this kind of supply motion is necessary, even though, as I said, we will support it. I hope in the spirit of co-operation under which these comments are offered that the government will very seriously take them under advisement. We would hope that something serious is done about this in the very near future.

Mr. Lewis: I’d like to use just a moment to associate our party with the remarks that were made by the member for London Centre. I’m going to speak as quiescently as possible, lest I work myself up to an amendment in the course of my own remarks, which has happened to me from time to time, embarrassingly enough.

Mr. Nixon: We recognize that.

Mr. Lewis: The hon. member for Brant-Oxford-Norfolk has moved an amendment on previous occasions to reduce it to three months. I must say that our inclination would have been, however uncomfortable that is for the government, to support it. I guess one doesn’t always want to do that kind of thing, to be trapped into that kind of thing, but there are two reasons on the face of it -- there, I am already starting to lose control, I shall temper myself.

There are two reasons right on the face of it why this should receive begrudging support, if any. Number one, the government is a bunch of the most incompetent economic managers around.

Mr. Reid: You can’t argue with that.

Mr. Lewis: The government is constantly asking for approval of estimate votes for sums of money which, by the time we come to the end of the term, have jumped by $100 million, $200 million, $300 million or more. Something sticks in the craw to have to stand here and give the government a five-months extension to supply, knowing that by the time it is over the Treasurer (Mr. McKeough) will have again mutilated the revenue projections of the province and proved himself again one of the least successful prophets of this age or any other, and that we will be well over $1.5 billion in debt by March 31, 1978.

Mr. Nixon: He is in his own country.

Mr. Lewis: I want to tell you, Mr. Speaker, that this aggravates us. It also can reduce my crescendo on the second point which I want to make with the government, which is simply that the government is systematically destroying the way this Legislature works. I really do want to say that to the House leader, because he is one of the people who has tried very hard within minority government to have it function adequately. I respect that and acknowledge it, and I think he understands it. As my colleague the member for York South pointed out, and as the member for London Centre points out, it is just nuts around this place. It just makes no sense at all to be sitting in a jurisdiction whose budget exceeds $13 billion a year, where the government wants to run through 40, 50 or 60 bills easily -- many of them quite substantial, not just housekeeping hocus-pocus but fundamental and serious matters -- in four or five months. In those circumstances it’s back-breaking to sit here for four or five months, it makes no blessed sense.

We are reducing the parliamentary system to an intermittent travesty. It would not kill us in this Legislature to sit eight or nine months a year. It is wrong to come back here as late as we do and sit for so short a period of time.

Mr. Eaton: Look at the empty chairs behind you. Where are they all?

Mr. Lewis: Although obviously the New Democratic Party would wish not to have its celebrated leadership convention disrupted by the mere banality of what goes on, it wouldn’t hurt us either. I don’t think it would offend anyone if we came back in January or very early February, let’s say February 5 or 6, rather than the usual inclination of coming back three or four or six weeks later, causing everybody endless turmoil during the course of the year.

The Chairman of Management Board (Mr. Auld) -- certainly the House leader -- I won’t speak for the Chairman of Management Board, I don’t know him well enough; I’ve known him for only 14 years and I can hardly scrape the surface -- but the House leader is a more transparent fellow; he wears his emotions on his sleeve. It is clear that it must offend the House leader that we be subject to such excruciatingly bizarre procedures in this legislative chamber as pulling all the business into four or five months.

The member for London Centre, typical Liberal that he is, takes exception to the blessed thing and doesn’t even move an amendment to change it. I, a typical New Democrat, will do likewise. Nonetheless, we are both at fault. There should be a Globe and Mail editorial repudiating both opposition parties for letting the government get away with this nonsense. Finally, at least, we’ve registered our sense of irritation.

All of the other chatter aside, we are really undermining the way this House works. We’re really doing it severe and perhaps long-term damage unless the Premier (Mr. Davis) can be persuaded to start sitting eight, nine or 10 months a year so that the business can go through gradually, the ministers don’t feel so cramped and pressed, not everybody is frantic, and three and four committees don’t have to sit at a time. That is not an unreasonable request.

Clearly, this motion which the Chairman of Management Board has put is meant to violate that principle, and that’s what’s so offensive in it. We give him support so reluctant, so begrudging, so unfriendly, that we will barely be able to choke forth the word “aye” when the motion is called. He should take that to his well-disposed heart. Yes, it’s there; he’s one of the few who has one.

Hon. Mr. Auld: Mr. Speaker, I just want to say that I’ll ensure that the House leader is made aware of the remarks that I have just listened to.

Mr. Lewis: Good.

Motion agreed to.



House in committee of supply.

On vote 1603, supervision of police forces programs; item 1, Ontario Police Commissions:

Mr. Stong: Mr. Chairman, I have a few remarks I wanted to make on this particular vote. To open, perhaps I can ask a few questions with respect to the morale of the police forces throughout Ontario, what the police commission is doing with respect to ethnic problems as they exist in Ontario, and more particularly in Toronto; what is the attitude of the Ontario Police Commission with respect to the exchanging of information between police forces throughout Ontario, and what is the attitude of the Ontario Police Commission with respect to the laying of charges? I am thinking particularly with respect to the duplication of charges, the numerous charges that arise out of one particular instance and appear on the court calendars day after day, which would bog the courts down, and what the attitude of the commission is.

But first, with respect to the question of morale in the police force I directed my opening remarks very cursorily to this particular item. I am concerned, because it would appear to me that the attitude of the public towards the police force is perhaps not completely undeserved by the police in many respects, given the way they treat the public on occasion. It calls, perhaps, for a person with the wisdom of Solomon, but on the other hand perhaps just a little human understanding and a human approach to some of these problems would suffice. I would like to know, specifically, what training police officers receive in terms of dealing with the family situations, situations as they develop between husbands and wives, and domestic disputes that the police officers are called in on so frequently.

Just over the weekend I had occasion to receive reports from people who had had recent occurrences and recent contact with the police. If I just may refer to one situation that came to my attention, it perhaps demonstrates what I am talking about with respect to police and public relations. I think public relations with respect to the police are very inadequate, perhaps even to the extent that they are non-existent, with the exception of the police officers who attend at the schools and speak to the children with respect to safety.

I would like to read into the record this letter, because it seems to me it is a typical example of a person who came in contact with the Metropolitan Toronto police; again, it demonstrates a lack more than an outright or overt attempt by the police to be disruptive. Robert Sexsmith writes to me: “The following situation occurred involving my relatives and I dealing with three North York officers. The reason I am relating this story is because I do not agree with the reasons justifying the episode as well as the outcome of it.

“I was driving on Yonge Street north toward my home in Richmond Hill, October 25, 1977, about 1:30 a.m. My wife and brother-in-law were passengers. I was north of No. 32 police station on Yonge Street when a police officer drove alongside of me and signalled me to turn over. I then noticed a police cruiser behind me with rotor lights flashing. The sergeant approached my car, reached in and pulled my headlight switch all the way out. He said I was driving with my headlights out. I then realized that I was only driving with my parking lights on.

“The other two officers that stopped behind me walked up to the side of my car. I was asked to produce my licence and ownership, then to step out of the car. The officers asked me to perform several tests of balance and then searched me. I felt I performed all these requests adequately.

“I was asked to sit in the cruiser by one of the officers. While I was inside, the other officer sat in the cruiser and said I was under arrest for impaired driving. He said I was going to be taken to the station for a breath test. They asked me several questions concerning the last 24 hours and my activities and the amount I had been drinking, as well as the length of time.

“My wife, who had consumed a lesser amount of alcohol over a longer period, was not allowed to drive the vehicle home after requesting to do so. A tow truck arrived and removed my car to the pound on LePage Street. A taxi was taken by my wife and brother-in-law to No. 32 station to await the result of the breathalyser. I arrived at No. 32 station with the officers and was taken to a room to be questioned by the two arresting officers.


“A third officer qualified for the breath test was also present. He asked me to perform several reflex and balance tests, then left the room. One of the arresting officers made a telephone call from the room. I was told by him that my court date was set for Wednesday, the 26th.

“This was confusing, because I did not have the breath test yet. Several more questions followed by the two arresting officers, then I was taken to another room where I met the third officer to take the breath test. The officer familiarized me with the analyser. I did not blow over 0.08 which would indicate my impairment. The officer said I was lucky, and free to leave.

“I went home by taxi, which cost $7. An $18 charge to obtain my vehicle from the pound the following day was another cost borne by myself. We phoned the following day to inquire about reimbursement, but were told this never occurs. I feel that some reimbursement for these costs are in order, since my conviction never resulted. There was also a great deal of inconvenience and tension brought to bear on my relatives and myself for what seemed to be inadequate justification.

“This charge is also of greater import to myself by the fact that my occupation depends on my possession of a driver’s licence. I think these officers had sufficient justification for taking these serious measures -- my headlights were out on a well-lit street.” That doesn’t make sense, but neither does the sentence in the letter.

“Perhaps scrutinizing the actions of the officers more thoroughly as well as penalizing them for weak judgment, would help prevent such aggravating circumstances from occurring again.”

That letter was written by a constituent, an ordinary law-abiding citizen I would assume, who undergoes a breath test; which is within the competent jurisdiction of a police officer to conduct. I am not quarrelling with that. The fact of the matter is, this person passed the breath test and was not, in fact, charged. In fact, he was not even charged with driving with only his parking lights on. No charges resulted whatsoever. His complaint is that there was lack of understanding and lack of proper public relations by the police department, particularly when the breathalyser adequately demonstrated his innocence.

Likewise, he phoned the police station, as he has indicated in the letter. He explained to me on the phone that the response he got was fairly curt, but that he was advised that he was not entitled to reimbursement for the impounding of his vehicle, even though he was innocent of any particular charges.

I think it can be read from this situation that perhaps the public is justified somewhat in its hard line towards the police departments. I related the incident I observed myself in front of the CNE. We say, sure there is always a bad apple in the barrel and it colours the rest of the force. Unfortunately, that is true. With respect to the relationship between police officers and members of the public it is my respectful opinion, in submission to the minister, that much more can be done in this area in dealing with people on a more friendly basis, particularly in circumstances such as these.

Why wasn’t it explained to him that he was free to go, rather than just be let go? Why was he advised that there would be a court date even before the breath test was administered? Why, in fact, was his wife not allowed to drive the vehicle home when he asked questions? None of these things were explained to him.

Maybe the police officers were justified in acting under the authority given to them by virtue of the Criminal Code, but the only thing I can see this person complaining about is that there was inadequate explanation given to him of the surrounding circumstances, and particularly the administering of that test.

I know that the police officers are called upon in every type of situation, and the nature of the work is almost contradictory, in a sense, I suppose, from day to day, but I received another letter from a constituent who witnessed a beating, again, at the Finch Avenue subway station in Toronto. He complained to the police. The police arrived. He explained to them what he had seen. It was a group of high school students, he estimated, using a pipe. Again, there were racial overtones because there were blacks and whites involved in the situation -- only it was his estimation that it was the blacks who were beating up on the whites.

He did complain to the police but, rather than them taking a formal statement from him, he was very curtly dealt with again, and it was explained to him, without going into detail, simply that this occurs every day and unless someone lays a complaint, then the police are powerless to deal with the situation.

Here is a citizen who witnessed something at the Finch subway station, who did make this complaint and did want it investigated. He volunteered to go along with the police to the school, which he assumed these boys were from, to investigate. Maybe no charges would have been laid, but the fact is that had this citizen gone in the accompaniment of the police officers to that school in North York, perhaps just their presence in the school would have made the rest of the students aware.

If nothing else was accomplished, other than making students aware that the public will not tolerate this behaviour and that each incident will be investigated, then the police would have accomplished their task and, again, would have built up a greater rapport between the citizens and those who are clothed with enforcing the laws of our province.

I received another complaint last week from a man who lived in Downsview. He is of South Asian extraction and had trouble renting premises but was successful in getting premises for himself and his wife. His vehicle was parked in an underground garage. One night he parked it there when he came home from work; the next morning, when he went to get into his vehicle, the windshield had been smashed and the shattered glass lying on the front seat and on the ground.

He reported this situation to the police. The police arrived and investigated. Of course, there was no one to be seen and no leads, other than the smashed windshield, were present.

He went back into his home and that evening he was visited by two white persons who apparently barged into the apartment and struck him, cutting his eye. Whether it was related to the car or not, he does not know.

Again, that was reported to the police on the same day. The police came, took a statement from him and again he says that it was passed off, simply by the police officer saying that these occurrences are becoming more and more -- not acceptable, but happening with a greater frequency, and the situation was left to rest with that.

His point is that it would have been much better if some police officer of perhaps the same extraction as he is had been sent to him on this complaint. If it had been a person of the same background, a person clothed with the authority of our law and perhaps a person who had rank and more authority, even within the department, to handle the situation, he would have been more satisfied with the result and more willing to accept the fact that the police cannot apprehend everyone. In fact, he would have been secure in the knowledge that something was being done and that the police were at least sympathetic with the situation, this having been conveyed to him in these circumstances.

I would like to know from the Solicitor General what is being done in this area, particularly in light of the headlines we read in the newspapers this weekend: “Metro Asians say Police Ignore Racism.” “Police ignore Us -- Asians.” “Sikh Vows, We Will Fight Against Racism’.” “South Asians Constantly Fear Attacks.” We have that type of situation. in the reports being prepared for the police, what is the ministry doing with respect to training of officers, the advancing and promoting of officers with similar backgrounds to those minority groups who seem to be subject to these attacks; giving them recognition through the ranks of the police forces, having them attend at these particular occurrences, interviewing the people and having some follow up?

I know this is going to be more time-consuming and greater demands are being made on the police force, but the police force represents our laws for the people out there. Each police officer is clothed with authority that we grant to him. Many people in society have no other contact with the police other than phoning in a complaint or seeing a police officer on the street. They can proceed, again secure in the knowledge that their safety will be protected. That’s what we demand of our police force. Our police force, I am sure, is trying to accomplish that.

In terms of these areas that we read about in the paper on the weekend and in terms of the racial discrimination that abounds and is increasing, and the violence that is erupting and increasing, what is the ministry doing with respect to the training of police officers specifically to handle these situations? I would also like to know from the minister what basis there is in the training of police officers to handle domestic situations, again with a view to the public relations aspect of policing.

I noted also with interest in the report that you have given us that one of the functions of the Ontario Police Commission is to stimulate the criminal information-gathering processes, and as well to promote free exchange of intelligence between forces. I wonder if this is being accomplished and what is meant by this phraseology in your report to us. In preparing myself for these estimates, I did have occasion to speak to detectives from the York regional police force who described a situation to me where they wanted to inform themselves and become more acquainted in the detection of offences of fraud. The Metropolitan Toronto police force has a fraud squad which is renowned, does excellent work and has the expertise and the experience that is lacking by many other forces.

There is a film presentation, apparently that the Metro fraud squad can take around to other municipal and regional police forces to acquaint them with the situation. I am advised that some of the police officers in the York region wanted to see this film. The Metro squad was prepared to show it, but the plans and the meeting were curtailed and stopped by the powers that be, the higher-ups in the York regional police. I am wondering if this isn’t just a figment of our imagination, this free exchange of intelligence between forces, and whether there isn’t more jealousy and competition between these forces on a regional basis than there ought to be.

In fact, ought there not to be some sort of a liaison committee that could act as a liaison between officers, as well with respect to complaints and with respect to morale in the police forces? It seems to me there ought to be this exchange, but when I hear situations such as that developing, then no one wins but everyone loses, particularly those of us in the community who rely on our police forces for that type of assistance.

I am concerned about the Ontario Police Commission and its actual role in the policing of Ontario. Its function seems to be -- and probably this is where society is most familiar with the Ontario Police Commission -- in terms of that body hearing complaints about police officers. It seems to me the public is not aware sufficiently of what this commission does. Again it’s lack of a relationship and rapport between the police and the community at large.


I’m not sure if this is the vote under which I’d like to get into police training -- I believe it’s the next item -- so I will reserve any questions I have about specific police training to that vote. But I am concerned about what the Ontario Police Commission can do in public relations in terms of specific zeroing in on specific problems in our community and providing the personnel and the expertise to deal with those problems.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: Mr. Chairman, the hon. member for York Centre has covered a good number of items in his opening remarks of this session. I would like to turn first to some of the things we are doing in police training, dealing with community problems of the sort he raised -- the racial tensions. Although, as you say, we can deal with this again if we wish under the Aylmer police vote.

Police training was subject to a thorough review by the Ontario Police Commission’s advisory committee on general police training in 1974. The report on police training was issued in 1975. The minister agreed in principle to recommendations contained in that report and as a result the commission is in the process of developing a complete training system for the police service in Ontario.

The revised probationary constable training program was implemented in January, 1977. It consists of five phases. In phase one the constable receives a brief orientation in his own force. He is then sent to the Ontario Police College for part A of the probationary constable’s course, which lasts for 10 weeks. He is given an understanding of the human relations aspect of policing in our modern society, and this understanding is reinforced constantly throughout his training period. After successful conclusion of this 10-week training period, he returns to his police force where he is taught local procedures unique in his particular jurisdiction. The constable is then given from 10 to 15 weeks of practical field training with a selected experienced police officer, when once more the human relations aspect of police work is stressed.

At the conclusion of this field training period, he returns to the Ontario Police College for a further five weeks, the objective being to consolidate the constable’s academic and practical training, measure his progress through the total program and uncover any weaknesses which may still exist and correct them where possible. Then there are other courses, a course for junior supervisors has also been set up and was implemented on October 1.

Further training programs for senior officers are being developed and will be introduced in 1978, and an additional refresher course for constables with five years or more service is planned. Several specialized courses for criminal investigators, identification officers and juvenile youth bureau personnel, together with traffic enforcement and engineering courses, have been conducted at the college on a regular basis for several years.

Then I understand that during their time at Aylmer there are 24 periods of public relations, one session of which deals with prejudice and one session with minority groups; that is out of 24 periods on public relations, one on prejudice and one minority groups. Maybe they should be increased and that will certainly be taken under advisement.

We talked in a general way about racial tensions the other day. You dealt with the matter that we had in the Saturday Star; of course it’s a concern to us and I have this report dealing with that item.

An article in the Toronto Star on October 13, 1977, entitled “East Indians Threaten Retaliation for Attacks,” by Star staff writer Joe Serge, caused me to contact the Metropolitan Toronto police. I visited the superintendent in charge of the division involved, Superintendent W. Barker, 55 Division, at 101 Coxwell Avenue in Toronto.

The newspaper article does not properly reflect the situation. It may be that its timing was intended to attract attention for a mass demonstration against growing racism scheduled for Sunday, November 6, 1977 at 2 p.m. at city hall, Toronto, to protest the government’s inaction on the physical attacks and discriminatory treatment of South Asians and other immigrant communities. This news story also appears to be an attempt to counter the editorial which appeared in the Toronto Star on September 1, 1977, entitled “Police Are the Ones to Handle Violence.” That editorial stated the case much more accurately. It described how the Metropolitan Toronto police have increased their surveillance on the neighbourhood, have laid assault charges if the evidence justified it, have identified youngsters engaged in name calling and informed their parents of their behaviour. It also stated that the community relations squad had been visiting with community groups trying to bring people together, working toward better understanding and co-operation.

The recent news article identified Mr. Kuldip Singh Samra, the general secretary of the Shromani Sikh Society. He is well known to the Metropolitan Toronto Police and currently is involved in various matters before the courts which cannot be commented on. Similarly, the other East Indian, identified as Mr. Sian, storekeeper, is before the courts and nothing may be commented on in that respect. The Metropolitan Toronto police have maintained surveillance of the immediate area of the Sikh temple on Pape Avenue since August 29, 1977, and there have been no incidents there in the six weeks since then.

It would appear that because this is the only Sikh temple in the city, it attracts East Indians from all over the greater Toronto area. Consequently, their cars are parked in the immediate area and residents and their friends are unable to find parking spaces. The Metropolitan Toronto police arranged parking facilities at Gerrard Square and these were used by members of the Sikh temple for only a short period of time. They declined to use them stating fear of being attacked when travelling to and from their cars. However, there have been no incidents of such occurring.

Another problem is that the East Indians congregate outside the temple, standing on the lawns and thus annoying residents. The residents complain about the garbage left lying around the temple and the state of the building which houses the Sikh temple. It appears it is an old grain storage shed.

Probably, they are doing the best with the facilities they have, but as you can see, they are causing some parking problems in the area, which I suppose, not surprisingly, annoys the residents who live there. Also I suppose the crowds, although I don’t know this location, probably are turning what used to be a relatively quiet area into a fairly busy area. That’s no excuse for the people reacting the way they do, but racial factors aside, I would think from my municipal experience that whenever a large group of this nature moves into a quiet residential area, whether it’s the Anglican church or United church or whatever it may be, frictions arise in the community.

I suppose the fact that racial differences are involved just aggravates it. I’m not making apologies for the residents there. What I am trying to say is that it is probably not surprising, regardless of racial origin, that there is some friction there.

As I said the other day, sometimes we expect our police to straighten out the ills of the world and the sicknesses of our society. I just feel that sometimes we ask the police to do too much. I feel they are doing as good a job as is possible, dealing with the kinds of cross-sections of society that they do; however, you may have more suggestions for us on that. I know that the senior police officers, both the OPP and the various large forces, get these copies of Hansard and glance over them and I’m sure the suggestions that the hon. member for York Centre has made will be taken into consideration by them.

You have some other specific items which you dealt with, such as morale on the police force. I think morale on the police forces is high. I’m not saying that some of the forces don’t have morale problems but, generally speaking, when we look across the province I think morale is good, and I’ll defend that morale for the OPP, the large metropolitan forces, and as I say most of the municipal forces across the province. We always have some complainers. Again, we look back to military days and there were always those in the services who were complaining about the management. To a certain extent, barrack-room grouching is a healthy sign.

Mr. Nixon: They used to complain about the Prime Minister.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: That’s right.

Mr. Nixon: But they always voted for him, of course.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: I think that’s a part of it. Sometimes you complain about these people but realize that they’re probably doing a pretty good job under the circumstances. I’m not surprised if, when I was in the services, I didn’t vote for the Prime Minister too, but we didn’t always like the kind of orders that we got from the Prime Minister down to the petty officers --

Mr. Nixon: You were a yellow dog Liberal in those days.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: -- who were charged with carrying out the orders.

However, I’ll defend the morale. I think the morale is good. Certainly, there’s some beefing and I think a certain amount of that beefing is a healthy sort of thing.

Let’s turn to that breath test that you dealt with on Yonge Street. I’m not so sure that I sympathize with your constituent in that base. We’ve heard his side of the story, or you’ve heard his side of the story. We haven’t heard the police side of the story. Your constituent was writing this in the cold sobriety of a Monday or Tuesday morning, but the fact was he did draw the policemen’s attention.

First of all, I gather there were two cars involved, and I would take some exception to that if they’re stopping somebody who appeared to be driving under the influence. I would wonder why they needed a sort of ganging up on him. It seems to me if you have two men in a car that would be sufficient to stop somebody of that nature, unless they suspected him of something more than impaired driving.

In any event, evidently he did do something to draw the policemen’s attention to him. First, his lights were not on the way they should have been. The full beam was not on. That in itself is an offence. We don’t know but what he was steering erratically or driving erratically. There is other evidence that is available in court other than the breathalyser test. In other words, policemen still lay charges on the whole basis, as you very well know, of staggering, glassy eyes and that sort of thing that we used to hear about in the courts.

The breathalyser is a more accurate and probably better test, but it doesn’t mean that just because a person passes a breathalyser test that he should be on the road. I don’t want to comment on the lady involved to any great extent. I don’t know her, I don’t know how much she had been drinking, but maybe the police, in their wisdom, decided that she was not in a fit condition to drive; not that she couldn’t pass the breathalyser, but I’m saying just because you pass the breathalyser test doesn’t necessarily mean that you are not a danger on the highway.

I think maybe the police did act reasonably. That is, I’ve come to that conclusion without hearing both sides of the story, but I can perhaps see shortcomings in the side of the story that you related.

When it comes to the case of paying the costs every time that the police are not successful in prosecuting or having a conviction registered, I think we’d make a mistake to introduce that kind of precedent. Just because the preponderance of evidence beyond a reasonable doubt is not proven doesn’t mean the person was not involved in doing something improper.

Scottish law, I understand, not only has a guilty and not guilty verdict but another verdict called “not proven.” I think that is the case with a lot of people here, where our law says they’re not guilty it’s probably a case of maybe they were guilty but we didn’t have enough evidence to prove they were guilty.

To start into a policy of repaying the costs, or paying the costs, whether it’s tow truck costs or whether it’s costs of the day in court, for all of those people on whom charges are laid and convictions not obtained, I think would be adding unduly to the public expense and I think probably quite unjustifiably to the public expense as well. If you want, I can get further information on that case and get the police story. But I think you are only putting it forward as an example of the police not using the good discretion they might be expected to exercise from time to time.


Personally, I have had some experience with the police, as the hon. member for Brant-Oxford-Norfolk (Mr. Nixon) knows, not for going two miles over the speed limit but occasionally for making an improper turn. I remember I made a right-hand turn on a street one day that was signed against it, purely for traffic reasons. This was before I was in this hon. House. I was aware I should not have been making a right-hand turn there. The policeman stopped me. I guess I was having a bad morning because I was a little bit curt with him and suggested that the job he was performing in stopping this right-hand turn really wasn’t very important. Like so many other people, I asked him didn’t he have more important things to do in catching criminals.

Mr. Nixon: That was a good start. What did he say?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: He was very polite. He said to me: “I am, sir.” That cooled me out so quickly. From there on I couldn’t be nice enough to him. I was the one who had started off on the wrong foot and the policeman was the one who came back with the answer that made me a little bit ashamed of my approach to him.

Mr. Lawlor: That was unlike the minister.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: We all have these experiences with the police from time to time. None of us likes to be stopped and reprimanded.

Mr. MacDonald: What we call our off days.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: The police are the only people -- I shouldn’t say the only people -- but in some cases the only people who ever enforce discipline on our undisciplined society in this day and age, and we don’t like discipline when it’s applied to ourselves.

On the other hand, there’s the kind of reference the hon. member for York Centre is probably referring to. One day as I was travelling, I thought the policeman might have parked more conveniently in a different place. I suggested to him that it would be more convenient for the travelling public who were trying to get through a narrow space if he moved his car up a few feet. I think my approach was quite reasonable. He came back with a very snappy answer that if I couldn’t get through that space then I didn’t deserve to have a driving licence.

Now there was a case where I was trying to be helpful and I thought the police were not sufficiently understanding or co-operative. That incident, as opposed to the other one, left a bad taste in my mouth. The first one was a good taste. We all have these experiences. When your person wrote to you about being stopped unreasonably, I don’t know whether they were as courteous as they should be. We express to them the need to be courteous. I think often they reply in kind. Despite that, they should give the answer the first policeman gave me, not the answer the second policeman I mentioned gave me.

On the Finch Avenue subway station incident, it is a matter of evidence. It could very well be that, although they made a note of the complaint, they see they have so little to go on by way of obtaining the necessary evidence to make a conviction they don’t regard that particular complaint as seriously as either the citizen thought they should or as I think they should. I think they should make full notations of every complaint of that sort. I suppose the citizen who was making the complaint, although he was prepared to make a statement, might not have had any means of identifying the people he complained of. I gather you are suggesting they could have gone to a school nearby and maybe obtained that.

I have really little comment to make on it, except I kind of agree with you, again without hearing the police side of the story, that that matter should have been followed up to a greater degree than it was. I do feel that sometimes they instinctively know that no matter how much time they spent on that, they would probably not get the evidence they needed to lay complaints in court. I am inclined to agree with you that it was not, in view of what you are saying, followed sufficiently.

Again you mentioned the Downsview citizen, that is a citizen of South Asian extraction, who complained about an attack on his automobile in the garage and the subsequent breaking into his apartment. You noted these occurrences are becoming of greater frequency. I regret they are becoming of greater frequency and again I say that’s society’s fault rather than fault of the police.

I think your suggestion in that case was that they might have sent around to investigate somebody who was of a similar background or of greater rank. I gather they only made one call on them, and of course when the police get these calls they don’t know what the background is, necessarily. Generally they want to send the closest patrol car to do the investigating.

There might have been a followup, I suppose, by somebody who was a little more diplomatic than the average policeman might be when he is working a heavy evening and making one call after another. I have had the experience of riding in a Metropolitan Toronto patrol car and know just how, on a busy Friday night, these calls often follow bang-bang-bang. They don’t have all the time they might like to have to investigate each one fully and be as tactful as we would like them to be. But as far as having the right officer to answer the right complaint, it would be a little bit difficult unless you did that by way of a followup call.

On promotion of minority groups, we are doing our best. I think here again you can work discrimination in reverse. As you know, the Metropolitan Toronto force has not had over the years -- although I think it has reflected society reasonably well -- a great many people from East India or the West Indies in its ranks. It has some now. The problem is these are fairly new recruits and if you suddenly promoted them because of their background -- although that could be one of the attributes for promotion -- but if you did it simply because of that you would be practising discrimination in reverse. The OPC and the ministry are encouraging the police force to be reflective of the community it is in as far as its composition is concerned. I hope in due time those people being recruited in the last few years and at present will be promoted.

I don’t know why the film was stopped. There are some rivalries among the three forces we have -- the RCMP, the municipal and the OPP. I like to look upon it as healthy rivalry and in any of my approaches to the various commands involved I talk along these lines, saying yes we appreciate the esprit de corps in your own force. Let’s talk about our forces as being number one, whatever that force may be, but remember that we are all serving the same people and that co-operation is the main element.

If you want to give us some more information on that film that was stopped, I’ll be glad to follow it up and find out what the official reason was for so doing.

Mr. Lupusella: Mr. Chairman, I am sure if we listen to what the Solicitor General is saying today, it is that nothing is wrong in our society. We heard him saying morale of the police is good; training is good; the police force is doing its best; organized crime is under control; human relations between police officers and the public are also good; we are expecting too much from the police force; the Solicitor General is not accepting the role of the police in educating the public. I have, then, to conclude that we are living in a perfect society and the role of the police officer shouldn’t be criticized at all.

I am sure if he is so optimistic about the whole view, and in particular about the role of the police officer in our society, maybe that’s why, I have to conclude, the Solicitor General is so optimistic when he talks about organized crime -- it is because everything is under control in the police forces.

I can only say good luck to him. I don’t share those views. I think that we have problems in our society. We see the role of police officers among the public, the kind of attitude with which they approach our society. I note their lack of understanding. It seems the Solicitor General, until the end of consideration of his estimates, is going to defend the role of the policeman in our society by stating that there is nothing wrong and that everything is working properly.

In my opening statement I raised the point that something is fundamentally wrong in the relationship of the police officer with the public. The Solicitor General, it seems, since I raised the particular concern, has been adamantly opposed to the role of the police officer to educate the public. When we get to the Ontario Police College and the kind of training which the police are receiving, then we will easily and clearly see that the only program and training which the college is giving to the police officers is a paramilitary attitude and discipline. That’s what the Solicitor General wants from the police officers. That’s why they lack understanding when they approach the public.

We raised, as I’m sure the hon. member for York Centre also has been raising, the concern about racial attacks. The only response of the Solicitor General was that we can solve the problem if we raise the number of constables who are supposed to deal with this particular situation.

I’m sorry to say that the Solicitor General is hard to understand. There is a lack of policies which are supposed to be implemented among the police officers and the police forces of the province of Ontario, and there is something wrong going on at the Ontario Police College. His only response, as I stated before, is that everything is well and they are trying to do their best while members of the public are raising problems and concerns. Next year, I’m sure, we are going to hear from the Solicitor General that they are trying to do their best, instead of analysing and applying new policies and implementing new guidelines in order that the police forces are going to approach these problems in our society.

There is something on which I am sure the Solicitor General and myself don’t agree. Maybe it’s a philosophical approach that is completely different from mine and, if he is going to follow that course of positions, then I can justify the kind of words he has been expressing today and in the last few weeks in relation to the police forces as a whole.

Mr. Chairman, if you will allow me, I would like to talk about the Ontario Police College and what is going on there in relation to training courses. It seems that the Solicitor General has been addressing --

Mr. Chairman: I would say to the hon. member that I understand we’re just on item 1. If the members wish to carry item 1, you certainly may go ahead, but I believe there is someone else who wishes to speak on item 1.

Mr. Lupusella: Then I would like to conclude my remarks for the moment and I can come back to the point of the Ontario Police College.


Mr. Blundy: Mr. Chairman, I would like to make one specific comment about the discussion that is taking place now under the Ontario Police Commission heading. There have been a lot of comments made about the efficiency of police forces and the public relations of police forces and their work in the community with various groups and so forth.

I would just like to add one thing, that in our riding we have three police forces and all three of them are very well respected and, I believe, very efficient and capable; they are thought very highly of in the community. Also, there is the utmost co-operation between the three police forces in the riding and the OPP and the RCMP. I might add a third thing, Mr. Chairman, that being a border city, as we are, there is also unofficial but very tactful relationship with the police force of neighbouring Port Huron, Michigan, and the sheriff’s office in St. Clair county. On many occasions the two police forces have helped one another and this has been seen many times at large public events. We have many American police over to help our Canadian police and vice versa. So we really have in that way a very good relationship between the various forces and the people.

The one thing that I wanted to bring up at this time, Mr. Chairman, was the composition of police commissions. For a number of years the municipal council -- of which I was a member for a number of years -- and the other municipalities in my riding, have talked about having a larger police commission, one that is more responsive to the people and to the municipal councils.

As you are aware, the budget of a municipal police force is a very large part of the municipal budget; and there is very little control of that budget and the expenditures of that department by the municipal council. Every year, when the budget sessions of the municipal council are held, the mayor, as a member of the police commission, reports to the council on the various expenses and the various undertakings of the police commission and the police force. But no matter what the municipal council thinks, it always ends up with the council saying, “Well, what’s the use of going to the Ontario Police Commission?” The views of the local council and the people who are represented through that local council are seldom taken into sufficient consideration so that any change in the police budget can be made.

We now have one judge, the head of the municipality, and one so-called civilian appointee. This is an improvement to what it was when we had two judges and a head of the municipality, but our council in the municipality of Sarnia has said over the years that it thought it would be much more responsive to the people and to the council, and that expenditures could be looked at more carefully -- in light of all the other budget items the municipality has to consider -- if there was at least one more member of council on the police commission, and possibly another so-called civilian appointee to the police commission.

This has been the subject of a number of resolutions in the Association of Ontario Mayors and Reeves, when that body existed, and more recently in the municipalities of Ontario. I believe that many of the municipal officials feel the police budget is almost out of their hands and they can’t do anything with it. I would like to stress this concern to the Solicitor General, because it is one that has been expressed by many people. You can ask any person who has been involved for any length of time in municipal life, and who has been both a member of the police commission and a member of a municipal council, as I have for eight years. It’s very difficult to be able to get the council to get their teeth into the budget and to make any significant changes in the budget.

I would like very much to have the Solicitor General give this House his views on the existing composition of the police commission and the possibility that there might be a wider segment of the people represented on the local police commissions. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Mr. Lawlor: His answer is it is the best of all possible worlds and everything in it is a necessary evil.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: Mr. Chairman, I’d like to make a philosophical comment on the words of the member for Lakeshore that here in Ontario at least it is not all that bad.

Mr. Lawlor: It is as close to paradise as you think you will probably ever come.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: It certainly is as close to paradise as the present government can make it, and I don’t think any other party would do any better.

Mr. Warner: That only proves your limited vision.

Mr. Stong: You have to give us a try.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: Dealing with this matter of police commissions --

Mr. Lawlor: I am going to send you a copy of Voltaire’s “Candide.”

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: I read that once; I read it in French, too. I wouldn’t want to try to do it today.

Mr. Lawlor: It didn’t get through. You’d have to have the earthquake at Lisbon to move you.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: As I said before, Mr. Chairman, I hope to introduce in two weeks’ time an amendment to the Police Act, which will deal in part with the composition of police commissions. I don’t see us adding to those commissions for the ordinary police force. The suggestion of the hon. member for Sarnia that perhaps we should have five- man commissions instead of three wouldn’t bother me, but I just don’t think the volume of business warrants it. I don’t see any great problem with that, if this House decided we should have five-member commissions, but I do think the three-member commissions have been working very well and that’s what the Act will propose.

As far as the onus of proof is concerned for budgetary expenses, this has been raised in the past and the bill does propose that the onus be shifted. In other words, at the present time the police commission proposes the budget to the municipal council and if the municipal council doesn’t like that budget it has to appeal it to the Ontario Police Commission. The proposal we will have is that if the council doesn’t like it, it will be able to say what kind of budget it thinks the commission should have and then the commission would have to appeal it to the OPC.

Being aware of the financial responsibility that the council has, that is what our Act proposes. Whether that will make any difference or not, I don’t know. I noticed just recently that the Metro Toronto commission has decided it has to put a check on some of its expenditures to the point of holding down the strength of the force. I don’t deny these things are political decisions in part, but at the same time, tradition has been that we regard policing as such a serious matter and that there is a provincial responsibility for uniformity and strength -- that is, success of policing -- so that the police commissions should have that say rather than the councils being able to cut the commissions down unreasonably.

I think it’s worth a try. Councils are responsible. After all, probably the councils and the political arm are more responsive to public --

Mr. Haggerty: Why doesn’t the minister absorb more of the cost of policing then?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: It’s a case of financing again.

Mr. Haggerty: You want to run the show.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: No, we’re not beginning to pay all of the costs, as you know.

Mr. Haggerty: You’re far from it.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: We contribute $10 per head in the municipality of the member for Sarnia for the costing of the police, but that’s depending on what the budget is, of course. It may be a large part or a small part, but we’re certainly not paying the major share in policing. We do feel there should be uniformity of effectiveness across the province and that is why the onus has been on the council to say that this is unreasonable or unfair. This bill will suggest the transfer of that. So we are taking some of the suggestions that the hon. member for Sarnia is making.

One of the big problems we have in the area of the member for Sarnia -- and we will be able to get that straightened out one of these days -- is the policing of the St. Clair River. We hope to have conferences of all three levels. That is one of the matters I want to discuss with the RCMP in the spirit of co-operation that we have.

Mr. Young: Mr. Chairman, the member for York Centre raised a question a while ago which set my mind thinking along a certain line which we investigated during our recent sessions of the Select Committee on Highway Safety.

My feeling was, as he related that incident, that perhaps the police, while they perhaps should have been more courteous than they were, had a real interest in preventing an accident that might have occurred. It seems to me that here is an emphasis that we sometimes forget, that the police job is not only to apprehend criminal activity and to stop it, but also, as far as traffic is concerned, to prevent an accident which can occur.

Along this line, the matter was brought to our attention that too often people look upon the police force as simply one to catch the offender, forgetting that his job is also to prevent accidents occurring. In this instance, perhaps that’s something the police were thinking about and that should have its emphasis.

In the whole field of enforcement and prevention, it was brought to the attention of the committee that in the overall picture in Ontario breathalysers were not being taken as seriously as they might by the authority in charge, that we were, in effect, about 100-plus breathalysers short of an adequate supply for enforcement in the province of Ontario. That’s number one. I wonder whether the minister has something here in his budget which is going to look after that. The $70,000 which is supplies and equipment listed here would hardly face up to that particular problem.

The second one which is far more important here is the use of the ALERT device, which, of course, is now being used in his own riding in connection with the RIDE program in Etobicoke, a device which I think promises a great deal for the future in the way of prevention of accidents. As in the case mentioned here, the person did not have the 0.08, but he might have been above the 0.05 which is the danger point where he becomes careless on the highway. The ALERT device will show the policeman whether that person is somewhere between the 0.05 and the 0.1 where convictions actually do take place.

In that case, we are hoping, as a committee, that we might have the kind of activity and the kind of legislation and the back-up of the police commission that would say to that policeman: “Use the ALERT and if that person is showing a blood alcohol content between 0.05 and 0.1, then he can be ruled off the road for 24 hours.” That way, we’d prevent a great many accidents which do occur at that level, before the person is actually subject to conviction but where he’s dangerous as far as driving is concerned.

I’m wondering if the minister has any plans for more extensive use of the ALERT device in Ontario. Certainly, I suppose, we’re watching the Etobicoke experiment with a great deal of interest and perhaps that will have some bearing on it. The ALERT device, of course, is the first generation device along this line. I did read where the Japanese are putting out a device which is perhaps not as efficient as this but which is much more reasonable in price. Certainly a great deal of research is now taking place around the world in this field, where we will get more sophisticated equipment, where the policeman can have it in his hand and he can test the person right there and then on the highway and find out whether he’s in a dangerous position or not.

It just seems to me that the important thing here, in this whole field which the member for York Centre has raised, is the question of prevention of accidents, and the whole emphasis here ought to be on giving the police forces some power of cutting down on the accidents that might occur at the level before 0.08 or 0.1 where conviction does take place.


In addition to that, of course, there’s a whole matter of Fuzzbusters, on which the minister did express an opinion recently. This is not, perhaps, directly within this vote, but I bring it to the attention of the minister that this is a device for breaking the law with impunity. Can he say whether there are plans for abandoning that Fuzzbuster as we have recommended in our committee in the near future?

These are observations, Mr. Chairman, on which I would appreciate an answer from the minister.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I know the keen interest of the member for Yorkview in the matter of safety. I appreciate his addition of those words to what I was saying to the member for York Centre about the possibility of taking people off the road even though they were not sufficiently impaired to lay a charge against them, I support that.

The member for Yorkview attended the launching of the RIDE program in Etobicoke. He may recall that at that time I mentioned the need for safety on our highways, and indicated that if we wanted it, people would have to be less cognizant of their rights and more cognizant of their responsibilities. I think this is what we’re getting into in this matter. People say: “The police had no right to arrest me because I could pass that test.” I think we should recognize our responsibilities more and say, “I should not have been driving under those marginal conditions and the police were quite proper in suggesting that I get home by some other means than my own car.”

I must admit, when I made that statement about being less cognizant of rights and more cognizant of responsibilities, I received some criticism for that. They thought I was trying to lessen people’s rights in some way or another. I stand behind what I said. If we are to have safe highways, I don’t think it’s a case of exercising our rights so much as it is trying to recognize our responsibilities for driving carefully. Certainly, the member for Yorkview has stressed that point and I welcome it.

The OPP do not have breathalysers. I’m thinking of the two types. The ALERT is made for roadside testing and is not recognized in court as the official test. The official test is given by breathalysers placed strategically across the province in many municipal stations and in all but 100 of the OPP detachments. It would be nice to have breathalysers in all detachments across the province and that is our aim.

Our delay is not, however, simply in the obtaining of equipment but also in the training of these breathalyser people. You need about three people to a detachment who are qualified. To become a qualified tester you must take a course that is given in our forensic laboratory or in our forensic building. It’s about a five-day course, so it means that we must bring the people down here from the various detachments across the province, give them that five-day course, which means that they’re out of action, and then send them back again. So it’s not just the cost of the equipment, but more particularly the training of three personnel in each of the detachments. We’re proceeding as quickly as we can and updating the people, but it’s something that perhaps we should be carrying out more quickly than we are doing. We’ll put emphasis on it.

It’s interesting to note, though, in connection with the RIDE program that we mentioned a short time ago, I understand there have been only 46 charges of impaired driving laid to date out of many thousands of people stopped and tested. Maybe most of our citizens are fairly responsible in their driving habits when it comes to drinking and driving.

On the ALERT device, the one that is used for roadside testing, I think they are now on the Mark II or revised model of it. We are waiting for that model to be cleared by Ottawa, they are the ones in charge. That’s under the Criminal Code, as you know. They are also the ones who cleared the ALERT device. I think they serve a useful purpose, more psychological than actual, because if the person fails that test at the roadside he still has to be taken to the detachment or the other headquarters for the test that the courts recognize.

It increases police work in the sense that they are giving them a roadside test and then the subsequent test. On the other hand, some people whom they may suspect of being above the limit are now not taken to the station because they have taken the test at the side of the road and go on their way again. Maybe it has a detrimental effect in that way in that if they had to go into the station at least they would be off the road for that much longer.

However it comes back to what we were talking about earlier. I believe the ALERT device is a good one and that we should have more of them. As soon as they are cleared by Ottawa I am sure more police forces, the OPP included, will be making greater use of them.

On radar detection devices, I said some time ago, and I still have cabinet approval for it, that I would be introducing an amendment to the Highway Traffic Act to outlaw this sort of device. It is one of those items that I also want to discuss with the two opposition critics. If we have sufficient support, we will be proceeding with it. If we don’t have sufficient support from the opposition parties, I probably won’t be introducing it. As soon as the estimates are out of the way that is one item I want clearance on from the opposition parties.

Mr. Young: Following the answer of the minister, certainly what he says is true about the present use of the ALERT device. It does mean the duplication of work, because the person who is breathing above a certain level must go then to get his breathalyser test. I think the feeling of many of us is that an amendment to the legislation would mean that the policeman has the right, at the roadside, simply to ban that person from driving for 24 hours if his breath tests too high.

That does mean legislation. It does mean some invasion of civil rights, or so many people have said in this respect; but I don’t think it does. It simply means that person, if he feels that the device is not accurate, would still have the right to go and take a breathalyser test if he wanted to, if he felt that the ALERT was wrong. Also it means that I, as another person on the road who may not have been drinking and driving, have a right to travel that highway with the assurance that nobody is driving towards me who is an unsafe driver. From that point of view, the matter of civil rights has to be balanced off. I am just wondering whether the minister has any plans at all of making this kind of change in the legislation so that the ALERT machine can be more effectively used.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: We have no definite plans, but certainly it is under consideration. That’s why the experiments that are presently going on or the pilot projects will be watched carefully. The report of the select committee will be taken into account, all of those recommendations, at some time. From there we will be either proceeding with it or not. But no decision has been made whether we will do what the hon. member is suggesting. It will be weighed after all the reports are in.

Mr. Warner: I will be as quick as possible. Earlier when we were on this vote, when we just got started, the minister read a letter pertaining to reports of racial violence in the media. I didn’t catch the author of that letter. I am wondering if he still has the letter there in front of him.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: Is that the report I was reading when I quoted the article in the Star, et cetera? That was from our own police liaison co-ordinator, W. A. Smith, an inspector with the OPP who is stationed in my ministry, who makes inquiries from the various forces, including the OPP. He does just that -- liaise.

Mr. Warner: Yes, I am wondering, in the light of that kind of report which the minister has, juxtaposed against the reports we have had in the newspaper, probably some of the reports from community relations officers and certainly reports from other people, including the committee that was set up to investigate racial violence, if all of that suggests to the minister that we really have to have a citizens’ complaint bureau in Metro Toronto and perhaps elsewhere to deal with this kind of situation?

On the one hand you have a report from the police officers, then you have other reports that are at odds with that. I was quite astonished when I sat and listened to it. There may be some truth in there, but I just can’t accept at face value what that report says because my experience tells me otherwise -- the experience of constituents coming into my office. When I go and witness the damage that has been done to their homes, to their automobiles, to their families and that there has not been any real follow-up in apprehending the people involved, then I am a little suspicious of that report you have.

I am wondering, though, if all of this says to the minister that perhaps the best way to handle this is by setting up the citizens’ complaint bureau that I thought we were going to get a couple of years ago and for some reason was held back.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: I don’t want anything that I may have said here or in the last few days to be taken that I minimize the problem of racial violence in the province. All I have said is that by the time we have racial violence it is too late to call the attention of the police to it or to try and have the police correct a sick society. The problem is in our homes, and in our schools, and in our work places, where we as private citizens can let this kind of prejudice fester.

To ask the police, as the hon. member for Dovercourt seems to be doing, to be the solution and to be the educators against this sort of thing I think is unreasonable. That’s all I am saying in this regard. I am not denying that it exists. I am not denying that everything should be done to get rid of it. But I am saying that the problem is prior to when the police come onto the scene. They are probably doing as much as anybody to rid our society of this. But it is not a problem of their making and to charge them with that kind of responsibility seems to me most unfair and not getting to the source of the problem, but trying to deal with it in some after-the-fact manner.

Yes, citizens’ complaint bureaus I think will go a long way toward establishing a proper channel for dealing with citizens’ complaints so that they may be properly aired.

You suggested that something in this article from our own Inspector Smith was inconsistent or at odds. I didn’t find it that way. I don’t know if you want to give me a specific reference where you thought it was at odds. I think he was simply saying that the police are doing what they can. He was pointing out some very realistic problems that didn’t have anything to do with racial matters at all, but also that there were some problems because of it.

But I really don’t see anything very much at odds with what you are saying or what I was saying.

Mr. Warner: When do we get the citizens’ complaint bureau?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: With the amendments to the Police Act.

Mr. Warner: And that’s in this session?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: I expect so.

Mr. Warner: I have two other specific questions.

Earlier in responding, you mentioned that out of 24 periods spent in training, two were related to what I would call some learning about cultural, religious or sociological background. Can you give me the amount of time those two periods represent out of the total?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: I don’t know whether they were 40-minute or 60-minute periods. But we will have somebody here in the next vote when we deal with the Aylmer college who can give us that specific information. But 24 periods of public relations -- no I can’t. I can’t tell you the percentage of time that represents, but we should have that when we get to the next vote.


Mr. Warner: That’s pretty alarming, obviously. We can get to that later.

I have two other specific questions and one is related to hiring practices. I have had a letter from the police commission. I was a little disturbed and I’d like some response from the minister. Apparently, when someone applies for a job as a police officer, if he or she is not successful there is no reason given. The police forces are not obligated to give a reason for not hiring the person. But further than that, apparently they also share the information among themselves, one police force to another.

The particular instance I had was that the person had approached one police force on a Friday and was turned down with no reason given. He then approached another police force on a Monday and was turned down again. The only way I think that it could have been accomplished was if one force was sharing the information with another.

I wrote to the police commission. The letter is up in my file but the essence of it was that, first, the police forces are not obligated to give a person a reason for turning them down. Secondly, they don’t necessarily share information between forces but that information can be made available. Those, to me, would seem to be questionable practices. If someone is seeking a job and is turned down, surely they should know why.

Perhaps it’s some reason which they can do something about. Once you get past the basic obligations of height and weight and eyesight and so on, if there is some other reason for the person being turned down for the job, they should know what it is so they can try to correct those faults.

I had two constituency cases, both in this vein, and in both cases those people really wanted to be police officers. But they just weren’t given any reasons.

The last question is that the Robarts report again brings up -- and this is in line with an earlier question -- that the police commission should really be coming under more direct political control than they are at present. The citizens should know where to go with their complaints and they should know who it is that’s running the show.

The police commissions are a pretty good place to hide behind; put the politicians out in the front line a little more. It’s perhaps immaterial how you go about that in Metro Toronto, whether you want to make a board of control responsible or a particular alderman or whatever. It doesn’t really matter, so long as you have some direct political control over that. When there are problems with it, as we have experienced in Metro Toronto unfortunately, and quite a few of them, and I don’t think they should be minimized -- the Morand report, for example, brought them out into the open pretty well -- there should be a direct avenue to get at those problems and get them solved.

So I’d like to know when we’re going to see that accomplished, so that those commissions are under more direct political control. Let’s stop the handing out commission places, but let’s have them more out in the open for the citizens to get at that.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: The Metropolitan Toronto Act governs the composition of the Metropolitan Toronto Police Commission. The Treasurer (Mr. McKeough) probably will be the one to bring in amendments to that Act arising out of the Robarts report, and I don’t know when that will happen. You might ask the Treasurer about that.

I do believe we’ll get into discussions about this matter of more direct political responsibility for police commissions when we deal with the Police Act. Probably whatever policies we decide at that time will be reflected in any amendments that may be brought into the Metropolitan Toronto Act. I do not know why it would be that he would apply some place on Friday and go to another place on Monday and be turned down, other than it may be that they simply were not hiring. That of course is one possibility. I would have to look into the particular circumstances. A lot of the forces at the present time are not doing any active recruiting so maybe it did not take long to get it turned down.

Each force determines its own requirements. Some of them have been pretty adamant in setting out physical requirements. It may be that the person did not meet the physical requirements in either force. I think they generally tell them if that is the reason for the turn-down. However, the turn-down may be on the basis of an intelligence test, it might be on the basis of a psychology test. I am not sure that it is always to the advantage of a person’s self-esteem to be told why they were turned down, particularly if they were turned down on the basis of an intelligence test.

Certainly when people are taken on as police officers there is some investigation into their background. They want to make sure that they themselves don’t have connection with the criminal element. They want to know that they have got a good reputation. They are suggesting that we should have, and rightfully so, higher standards for police officers and so generally speaking, I support these higher standards when it comes to their mental qualifications and, more particularly, their attitudes.

And yet it is a little hard to turn somebody down on the basis of an attitude. If we have to turn somebody down on the basis that we thought that they might be rough on prisoners, or that they did not have, in our opinion, the correct psychological makeup to be policemen, it is pretty tough to justify that to a person.

In one sense you are telling us to be more strict with those whom we employ, and then in the next breath you are telling us be quite open and tell them why we are turning them down. As I say, those are matters of judgement and sometimes it is hard to substantiate those judgements with opinions which are acceptable to the applicant. In other words, if I said, “You would not make a good policeman because of your attitude,” I am sure that you would be the first one to challenge that statement.

So I am not so sure that we want to open ourselves to telling them on all occasions why they have been turned down. In your particular case, if you wish to give me information on it I will be glad to follow it up.

Mr. Haggerty: I would like to direct two questions to the minister. One relates to the matter of police costs to the municipalities in the province.

In the light of the present constraints that are applying to municipal budgets through the Treasury of the province of Ontario, is the minister prepared, at this time, to provide additional assistance to municipal police forces? It is a matter now where municipalities have little control over the matter of the police budget and sometimes they may seem to be out of hand. The question is, where does the money come from? Does it go back to the local taxpayer, who has to bear the largest percentage of the cost?

While the constraints are there -- I think it is eight per cent that is applied to municipalities -- perhaps when the AIB guidelines are lifted next year, when contracts are being renewed and so forth, when these matters could be getting out of hand again as it relates to the police costs, is the minister prepared to provide additional assistance to municipalities for the per-capita rate costs for policing?

The other matter is related to the compulsory retirement age for policemen and firemen. Has the minister actually brought in any guidelines relating to the matter of retirement ages? Is it going to 60 or 65? There is some question about a decision brought down by the Ontario Human Rights Commission relating to the matter of early retirement at the age of 60. Are you prepared to bring in legislation that defines that particular area of retirement?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: I do not foresee any immediate increase to municipalities for police grants. I do have some figures that may be of interest to the hon. member for Erie. In each year, there shall be paid to each regional municipality, a payment or payments in accordance with the population of the area municipalities within the regional municipality as follows: $15 per capita where regional municipality is deemed to be a city for the purpose of the Police Act; $10 per capita based on the population of each area municipality providing its own law enforcement by retaining its own police force, or being under contract for the policing of the municipality by the Ontario Provincial Police force in accordance with the Police Act.

So roughly speaking it’s $15 for a regional municipality per capita and $10 for the other. However, more pertinent to the question you asked, indicated below is the increase in per capita grants from 1972. The regional payment in 1972 was $3.25 and that has gradually increased to $15 in 1977. The area payment, where the police force is non-regional, was $1.75 per capita in 1972 and has increased to $10.

I do not have concise figures as to increased costs for the police forces to municipalities. I do have a breakdown of what the various municipalities have paid. But I do not believe that their costs have increased at a greater rate than our grants to them.

I think our grants have increased more than their costs.

Do we have that information? It’s just for last year is it? I’ll send this across to the hon. member and he can take a look at it.

But with our budget restraints, I cannot see that we’ll be increasing those grants in the near future.

Mr. Haggerty: The reason I asked the question of the minister is because the OPP are withdrawing their services from the village of Crystal Beach. I think it had a complement of 17 OPP officers. I don’t know whether the population for Niagara region includes summer residents or not. I know that the town of Fort Erie experiences an increase in population from about 23,000 to an estimated 40,000 in the summer months. Is there any special consideration given to that municipality to borrow some of the cost of these additional summer residents moving into the community?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: Not that I know of. As a regional municipality, they’re getting $5 per capita more than the others and the region will be bearing the cost of policing that area. That’s where Fort Erie and Crystal Beach have the advantage; the region will bear the additional cost for summer residents.

At the same time however, we’ve got to consider the advantages of the tourist industry. As you know, areas like Niagara Falls, Niagara-on-the-Lake and Fort Erie, as well as Crystal Beach, get a great deal of their revenue from the summer influx of tourists. The extra they spend on policing probably is not out of line with the dollars that these people bring with them.

Mr. Haggerty: The minister did not reply to my second question related to the matter of early retirement.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: I don’t recall it as being a major issue with the police. It has certainly been a major issue with the fire services across the province. Most of the fire services have union contracts with their various associations calling for retirement at 60 years of age. We have come to a difference of opinion with the Human Rights Commission which believes that it’s an infraction of a person’s individual rights -- that we should not be able to force someone to retire at 60. The ministry feels that is a reasonable term in the contract and supports the retirement under contract, or by agreement, between the fire association and their respective municipalities. We support the 60-year forced retirement.


The Human Rights Commission has said otherwise. The last judgement of Mr. Justice Hughes supported the firemen and their contract position regarding forced retirement at 60. That case was going to be appealed and I think notice was served by the Human Rights people. Informally, I have expressed to members of that commission my ministry’s position. However, they are appealing the judgement and we will have to have the outcome of that appeal before we decide what legislation we may introduce.

The judicial process should be exhausted with regard to the clause before we change the law.

Mr. Bradley: Along the line of the member for Erie; look at your figures of $15 per capita in regions, and $10 per capita in area municipalities outside of regions. Do they not indicate to you, that the costs of having regional police forces across the province -- I’m speaking specifically of Niagara now because I represent a constituency within the Niagara region -- are far greater than previously -- both to the region and to those municipalities outside of the region? Does it not seem reasonable that instead of establishing large regional police forces in a place like Niagara, the provincial police continue their operations within the region and allow the urban municipalities the use of a regional police force?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: I don’t want to say a blank “no” to that. We’re still pretty early in our assessment of how the regional forces are going. Certainly the cost of regional forces in Metropolitan Toronto is much greater than costs were under the old setup of 13 municipal forces. But I wouldn’t want to see us dealing with the sophisticated crime problems we have in Metropolitan Toronto, organized crime in particular, with 13 different forces.

Regional forces generally bring with them more sophisticated equipment. It means perhaps, more radios, and we have special grants for radio communications. It probably means more automobiles and that type of thing.

Mr. Bradley: That’s for sure.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: The costs do go up --

Mr. Blundy: An indictment of regional government.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: -- but we expect the calibre of policing and success in dealing with crime will also increase. Some of the regional takeovers are fairly recent. This takeover is being completed in Niagara now. We are in the final stages in Durham and Peel. The Kitchener-Waterloo takeover occurred some time ago and it seems to be working out pretty well.

The per capita cost, as I have it here, in the Niagara region is $37.63, although they vary by region. That’s actually one of the lower ones. Durham region is $37.09.

Mr. Haggerty: Look at the assessment.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: Haldimand-Norfolk is $58.82, which may be of some interest to you. Hamilton-Wentworth is $45.09. So your costs are considerably less than Hamilton-Wentworth’s.

Mr. Blundy: Yes, but compare those with one single municipality.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: York region is $38.11. I don’t know how your Niagara region assessment compares with these, but your police costs are not out of line. But I agree that you can’t look just at costs without looking at assessment as well.

London city is $37.80. You’re about comparable to the city of London. I don’t know how your assessment compares with London.

Mr. Haggerty: The assessment is about $150 million more than what the city of London is. The population is about 100,000 more.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: No, it doesn’t affect the per capita cost; there’s a greater assessment to spread it over, so that if your per capita cost, where the assessment is large --

Mr. Haggerty: It should be less.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: Yes. However, your per capita costs in the Niagara region are not that out of line. They’re among some of the lower ones. When we look at the city of London, of course, it’s not a regional municipality and I believe that it only receives the $10.

Mr. Bradley: Following along in a similar vein and looking at the potential costs -- you looked at costs and you pointed out that the takeover by the regional police is very recent and has been, to a certain extent, gradual. What people in my area would be concerned about is the administrative costs that will come out of this -- the number of promotions that we’ll have because we have more members of the regional police force, for instance and the extra administration that will result from the region taking over from the OPP. This is a kind of concern as well, and I’m sure that you’re aware of it.

It’s a compliment to the Ontario Provincial Police that residents in the rural areas are very, very satisfied with the calibre of policing in those areas by the OPP and, indeed, we’re very reluctant to see them go. I express that concern for the future in the takeover and the ultimate buildup of administration which I think is going to result along with promotions and things of that nature. So, certainly, it will be worth while and, no doubt, your ministry will be keeping an eye on this to see what the costs are.

I could also mention a third situation which would cause some concern in my municipality. That would be the fact that there was a possibility that some of the police who would normally be servicing the urban areas such as the city of St. Catharines which is the largest urban area in the region, we would be concerned that some of the police might have to be ordered into rural areas in order that they might cover a larger area. Therefore, the level of policing in the city of St. Catharines might decline. I realize that in absolute numbers it probably won’t, but otherwise, we might be able to have more police at our disposal where the crime rate might be anticipated to be greater.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: I recognize those possibilities and we’ll be keeping our eye on them.

Mr. Swart: I would just like to pursue the figures which have been presented by the Solicitor General a little further, and point out the situation in the Niagara region is not comparable what it is in Toronto in many respects.

First of all, it’s not a continuous urban area and, secondly, because they are much smaller communities and because it is sort of a pure area, I think the member for St. Catharines would agree, we don’t have the same degree of crime.

However, I would like to ask the minister if those figures which he produced, the per capita costs, are the figures which were projected for the 1977 fiscal year of the Niagara region, whether they were the 1976 figures, or whether in fact they are the projections of the full policing of the region by the regional police. That has only recently taken place as you’ve stated. If you’re using either 1976 or 1977 figures, it’s not an accurate comparison with any other place.

I might just add that there is a rather strong feeling in the Niagara region, a feeling which I share, that the policing is not as good under a regional force covering the whole peninsula as it was, generally, when they had the local police forces. Also, there is certainly a very justified strong feeling that there is not the sort of local accountability to the population in a municipality. The police force has become very distant from the people at the present time and I don’t think that this enhances the operation of the police.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: To answer the member for Welland-Thorold, the figures we gave were for 1976. They are the last year for which we have complete figures, but of course 1976 was the year for the comparison figures for the other municipalities.

Mr. Swart: Most of the municipalities you quoted were totally policed, whereas vast areas of the Niagara region were still then policed by the provincial police. They have had to take on a great number of additional police now that the OPP have gone out and therefore the costs will be a great deal higher so that comparison was not accurate.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: I recognize that. I think I did give Durham figures as well and Durham is going through the same process as the Niagara region is going through. However, I recognize they possibly don’t give an accurate picture in view of the changes that have taken place.

When you bring in regional policing, I suppose some areas get a little less than they had before, but other areas will get considerably more than they had before. It’s one of the problems you, of course, get with regionalization -- that you try to equalize your services. If we apply that theory across the board the response time for the city of St. Catharines may not be as speedy as it was before regional police, but I would suggest in a good number of areas in the outlying parts of the Niagara region the response time is much faster. Probably the people in St. Catharines would suggest the policing there is not as good as it was. But if you go to the others they might say, “Yes, it is much improved.” I think if you give this time to work out you will find regional policing for your municipality is an improvement, but we are keeping a close eye on this matter.

I don’t see any other areas at the present time where we are likely to introduce regional policing for some time.

Mr. G. I. Miller: I have a couple of questions. I believe the $58.82 per capita for Haldimand-Norfolk is one of the highest per capita costs for regional police. Is there any relationship between assessment and the cost of policing or is there any consideration given in providing the grants?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: I do have some figures here that tie it into $1,000 of assessment. Haldimand-Norfolk is $2.29 for $1,000 of assessment; the Niagara region is $4.28 for $1,000 of assessment. Haldimand-Norfolk’s cost per capita, however, are $58.82 and the Niagara region $37.63. I have, as I say, many interesting figures here.

The Durham region, which is going through the same changes, its cost is $3.62 for $1,000 of assessment, so it’s in between Haldimand-Norfolk and Niagara. But its per capita cost is $37.09, approximately the same as the Niagara region, so they don’t appear to be out of line. But these, as I say, are 1976 figures. We will have to wait until the end of the current fiscal year to get some really significant figures as far as the cost of the complete regional policing in Niagara and Durham is concerned.

Mr. G. I. Miller: Is there any thought of cutting back on the assistance from the provincial police? What are the future plans in that regard? Are they going still to maintain the same forces as far as the provincial police are concerned?


Hon. Mr. MacBeth: Oh, no, where the regional police have taken over all we will be doing is maintaining the king’s highways in those locations. In other words, we are doing the patrolling of the highways in the regions, as we do in Metropolitan Toronto when we look at Highways 401 and 427, that type of highway, but the regions will be doing all the other policing on their own. Of course, our advisory services under the OPC are available to them. Our grants, which we talked about, are available to them. And in case of emergency the OPP or even other forces are always ready to lend assistance. But their first call for assistance, of course, would be to the OPP.

Mr. G. I. Miller: In your opinion has the co-operation then between the two forces been working quite well? I have had a few complaints about the co-operation between the region and about one covering for the other. Has this ever been brought to your attention?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: I can’t think of any specific incident that has been brought to my attention, but if you have them, let us have them, and we will follow through.

Mr. Chairman: Any further comment on item 1?

Item 1 agreed to.

On item 2, Ontario Police College:

Mr. Lupusella: I think I just finished commenting about the Ontario Police College in my previous statement, but I was dealing with the wrong item.

The Solicitor General has been making comments about the kind of courses which the police officers are receiving at the Ontario Police College. As we know, the new police college was officially opened on May 6, 1977, in the presence of the Premier, the Solicitor General and government officials. At that time, I don’t think I was around. However, it seems that there was a particular concern in the Legislature with reference to police colleges that they were too isolated from the community. I hope the Solicitor General, if other colleges are going to be built, will take into great consideration the isolation in which those colleges exist, far away from the cities and from people.

I think the main problems and the main complaints in relation to attitude and the kinds of roles which the police force is supposed to implement in the province of Ontario, start here at the Ontario Police College.

As I said in my opening statement, the police force in the province of Ontario is poorly trained. I am going to emphasize this particular loophole which presently exists, and I hope the Solicitor General will find ways to close those loopholes. What I would like to see from the Solicitor General is that his ministry provide some kind of leadership so that the kinds of courses, the nature of the courses, and the way the courses are implemented will be dictated by the Solicitor General, with representatives of other groups, in order that the right courses will be selected and the best training technique will be received by the classes.

Let me tell you just for a moment what’s happening at the Aylmer college. The probationary constable’s course has been extended recently to 15 weeks, with the course divided in two parts. First of all, the length of the course -- 15 weeks -- is something the Solicitor General is supposed to take into great consideration. I don’t agree about 15 weeks. I hope the Solicitor General is going to provide us with a breakdown of how those constables use their time.

On reading the annual report, it seems that 25 per cent of their time is spent on physical fitness. I’m not disputing the fact that the constables should be involved in this kind of activity. I want to criticize the prolonged period of time in which they involve themselves in physical activities, If they are going to spend so much time, 25 per cent of their time, on physical activities, I don’t know what kind of training they are going to receive from the college. I am going to go through the content of the courses in the course of my presentation.

First of all, I think that the content of the courses should also be criticized in terms of the kind of principles in relation to education and in relation to human behaviour. As I mentioned in my opening statement, psychology or sociology should be part of those courses. If the Solicitor General will take into consideration my recommendations on the 15 weeks, I don’t think spending 25 per cent of their time on physical fitness is going to be really effective.

The other point which I want to raise is that if the constables are going to spend 25 per cent of their time on physical activities, I’m just wondering, when they go back into the police force if they still have the same time to spend on practical physical activity. Therefore, I don’t think we should emphasize it too much in those 15 weeks; 25 per cent spent just for that particular activity.

I’m not suggesting that we should completely eliminate this time spent on physical activity. I think we should prolong the period of time which they spend at the Ontario Police College. It seems that a few years ago the period was raised to 15 weeks from 12, and I hope the Solicitor General can correct me if I’m not using the right figures. I think we need more time and I think we need more selection and different kinds of courses, in relation to the content, in order that the police officers will get the most effective use of time spent at the Ontario Police College.

As I stated before, part A, of 10 weeks’ duration, has no final examinations but all students try periodic tests and the results are averaged for a final mark. Part B, of five weeks’ duration, includes examinations on all subject matter for the complete course.

Talking about the content, the courses in relation to recruit classes consist of criminal law, traffic law, statutes, courts, human relations, search, drugs, first aid, evidence, police procedure, firearms and physical fitness. I hope the Solicitor General, when he replies to my comments, is going to give me the background in terms of philosophy or principles involved in those particular items. I would like to hear from the minister what is the essence of human relations that they are teaching to the police officers.

I would imagine -- and I’m just interpreting; I never went through the course and I don’t know really what is going on, but I hope that in the human relations course they would emphasize those subjects which I mentioned in my opening statement in relation to psychology and sociology.

The Solicitor General has been reacting -- and I think over reacting -- to the point where he doesn’t see the role of the police officer as an educator in our society. He should not be a doctor; I don’t think anyone has been pretending that an officer should become a doctor as well.

There are contradictions which presently exist in our system. Certain contradictions in the role of the police officer are going to have to be eliminated, as far as I see it with the present scheme. As far as I see it, the role of the police now is just to implement the law. There is nothing which teaches them the human behaviour of the structure of our society in the province of Ontario. That is why I have been raising complaints. For example, when someone is taken to the police cells for drug abuse more consideration should be given to this particular factor because maybe the person is psychologically sick. I think that some kind of understanding in relation to human behaviour should be taken into consideration by the police force.

Physical education is really stressed at the college. I don’t want to emphasize again that approximately 25 per cent of the full course has been allotted to foot drill and deportment through arms training, physical fitness, self-defence, swimming, water safety and participation in sports. I have never heard the minister making particular statements about the philosophy of the ministry which involves those particular items, like the use of firearms. Maybe at the college they teach the constables how to shoot. But as to the technicality of when they are supposed to use firearms, I have never understood what the minister’s position is all about.

For the year 1977-78, as that’s the program we are dealing with, Mr. Chairman, let me tell you what the training and educational committee prepared at the centre for distribution to the period instructors: Evidence; miscellaneous provincial statutes; the Highway Traffic Act; arrest; break and enter investigation; court preparation and conduct; and domestic complaints. I hope the Solicitor General is going to make certain comments in relation to domestic complaints. In other words, in considering the content of those courses, what the college is teaching to the constables is just the bureaucratic implementation of the law, how to present evidence, how to interpret the provincial statutes, the Highway Traffic Act and all of this stuff. I have to get to this point. If the public has a complete and different image about the police force in the province of Ontario, that they are tax collectors and that they penalize people just when they violate the law, I don’t think that they are completely wrong.

The Solicitor General is completely rejecting the idea of educating the public. Educating the public doesn’t mean that they should not lay charges. I mean they should do that -- it’s part of their role. But the kind of approach and the way of implementing the law is something which is bothering people and a lot of complaints have been raised in relation to that.


The full schedule of the courses at the training and development centre will include an orientation course, a techniques of instruction course and in-service training instructors’ course as well.

I want to comment on the content. The courses are too short and I hope the Solicitor General is going to do something about it. I don’t think that a 15-week period is a reasonable time in which to train the constables, considering that 25 per cent of their time is spent on physical fitness.

I would like to hear the minister talking about policy directions on each program. That’s something in which I’m sure a lot of members of this House will be interested.

I want to have an answer about psychology and sociology -- I think these are two important items which should be taken into consideration. I’m sure a lot of problems arise in relation to the lack of understanding in the police force when they approach the public.

I think the Solicitor General is supposed to provide such leadership in those programs. I think the Solicitor General should have an impact in relation to policies. I don’t know what the position of the government is -- if it’s leaving those policies in the hands of the Ontario Police College or if the minister has some particular impact in order that those loopholes that are raised from time to time by members of the Legislature and by the public may in the long run be eliminated.

Another thing that is bothering me, Mr. Chairman, is the reason why police leave the force. That is something to which the Solicitor General should address himself.

Statistics from December 31, 1976. show the number of officers leaving the force to be 745. Of this number 99 retired and 24 were dismissed -- I would like to know the reason for the dismissals and what the complaints against those policemen were. There were 115 resignations requested. Why were their resignations requested? Seventy-one joined another force; that is a normal routine. Forty-two were dissatisfied -- I would like to have an explanation of that -- and 369 had other reasons -- that’s an item to which I would like the minister to address himself; really give us a reasonable explanation of why 369 officers leave the force for “other reasons.” I don’t want to make any comment in relation to the deceased police officers.

The reason why I am raising this particular problem is because of the cost of training. I think the Solicitor General should get involved in that particular factor -- why so many officers are leaving the force. Police force costs are becoming astronomical. The total cost annually is around $500 million, and I think the Solicitor General should find out reasons and causes and how those problems can be eliminated as well.

The Solicitor General has been raising the issue that the morale of the police officer is primarily good. That’s a simplistic answer to say that the police officers are fine while there is a high number of officers leaving the force.

Constable training is very well emphasized on the background information which the Solicitor General sent to us: “The cost of training per student-week rose to $156.72, based on the number of student-weeks for 1976 and an estimated $2,885,000 expenditure for the fiscal year 1976-77. This increase is partially due to increased costs associated with the new buildings, inflation and a buildup of a second staff in the fall of 1976 to prepare for implementation of the new probationary constable training program which was introduced January 4, 1977.

“However” -- and I’m quoting from the background information -- “it was also increased by about $27 per student-week due to a drop of about 4,000 student-weeks from the work load of 1975.” I would like to have an explanation of those figures, especially in relation to the drop of about 4,000 student-weeks from the work load of 1975.

The cost is rising, it is becoming astronomical, and I think that the Solicitor General should consider the whole issue of why so many constables and so many officers are leaving the force. That’s why I’m going to address myself to the phenomenon which might take place, that some officers are going to be laid off. I think the Solicitor General should be particularly concerned about those officers because in the long run we might need those officers again and we have to spend more money to retrain them -- money which can be saved.

I raised this particular problem in my opening statement. It’s a situation which the Solicitor General should face and I hope that he’s going to convince the cabinet that inaction on this is going to be detrimental in relation to the amount of money which is required again in the long run to retrain those officers. That’s a simple principle which the Solicitor General should take into great consideration.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: The member for Dovercourt dealt with a number of items, some which are in this vote and some of which were in the previous vote. I will try to make some comments in regard to them.

I think his first question was directed to the isolation of Aylmer. That can have some good things attached to it and it can have some bad things attached to it. Generally, when these students come to us we want them to have their mind on their work. We don’t want them to be running around to the nearest town for relaxation of one sort or another. I would suggest that the fact that Aylmer is not close to a large city probably helps the students in their attitude. It allows them to concentrate on the program that’s there. It keeps them living as a unit in that they spend most of their evening time with one another.

Apart from the fact that some of the students might like to be closer to the bright lights, in the interests of the policing of this province and in carrying out the concerns that you express -- namely, education -- Aylmer is in a pretty good location for that. When you make any decision, you can always cite the reasons why the decision should have been otherwise. The decision was made years ago to place Aylmer there. It was an old air-force base. That’s why it was originally selected. Accommodation was available.

I think we’ve had good reason for carrying on the college at that location. It is not that expensive to reach. It is fairly central as far as the large municipalities of this province are concerned and it has the advantage of having the students concentrate on their work rather than on activities away from the college.

I would like to see these courses much longer than they are. I would like to see policemen able to get all of the extensive courses that my friend from Dovercourt is suggesting they should have. It’s fine for opposition members to want all of the good things of life, and that is what they’re there for, to urge that we should have them, but then in the next breath they criticize us for the cost of policing.

Some of the costs for sending these people to college are borne by the municipalities that send them there. They have to pay their salaries when they’re away. Most municipalities do not want to forego the services of these policemen for long periods of time. You can say: “Why don’t we pick up the cost?” The province can’t pick up the cost of all of these things without raising our taxes some place or having the deficit budgeting which we have been hearing from the other side of the House. It’s a case of trying to get the most value you can for the money that’s spent. And that’s exactly what we’re doing. We try to pack as much into these courses as possible.

I gather from my friend’s remark he would like to see us deal a little more in such subjects as psychology and human relations. We do spend, as I say, some time on just those matters. I understand the two subjects are scattered throughout the 15 weeks of training period. Overall about three hours are spent specifically on racial discrimination and minority groups. You can say three hours is not sufficient. That is three hours on those two subjects specifically, but all the way through the course stress is laid on the personal aspects of policing, the fact that they’re dealing with people, the fact that they’re dealing with people of a variety of races and racial backgrounds and that they must use a psychological approach to very many of them. That stress is carried throughout the course but specifically for three hours on those subjects.

The course was proposed by a study group and supervised by a committee of the advisory committee. Human relations are dealt with -- human behaviour, prejudice, minority groups and interpersonal relations. It’s stressed by all of the instructors throughout the entire course. I don’t know what more we can do.


You’re suggesting that we should spend less time on physical fitness. Physical fitness includes the matter of drill, small arms training, swimming and water safety, as you read from the prospectus of the course, the college calendar. Policing is a very physical job. I don’t know how we can change it. It would be nice to think that you could deal with people purely on a mental basis, but a great deal of policing is physical.

You probably saw the combination of psychology and physical policing working on Saturday night at that hostage situation. Certainly, the physical powers were there to back up policing -- and I don’t think any of the citizens of this city would want us to be without that kind of muscle -- yet at the same time the fact that people were released from that very trying situation without loss of life and with very little injury was probably because of the great deal of psychology that many members of our police force have, including Chief Harold Adamson of the Metropolitan Toronto police and many of his officers.

So when you say psychology, if you have ever seen psychology at work, I think you have seen it in the two Toronto situations, one last spring and the one last Saturday night. We do place emphasis on it and to us it is very important, but I am not, at the same time, for reducing the amount of physical training that our policemen have.

Mr. Lupusella: I am saying extend the period of time.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: All right. I don’t know exactly what you are saying to me. At one point you are saying that I am not in favour of police education in this field. I don’t know how you got that idea. I am very much in favour of the police doing some education, but I am saying that the real onus for education of the public is much earlier than that, and I don’t like you suggesting that I am not in favour of the police carrying out educational programs in human relations. I certainly didn’t say that at all, and if you would listen to what is said instead of paying so much attention to your notes there, you might get the message that I am trying to give to you.

Mr. Lupusella: Can the minister explain how the policeman is carrying out this particular duty of educating the public, because I didn’t understand the message then? Would you please explain in more practical terms what the police officers are doing in our society to educate the public?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: I would suggest that my good friend speak to the member for York South (Mr. MacDonald) or to the member for High Park (Mr. Ziemba), and he will know some of the actions that the police, of this city at least, took in regard to trying to deal on a day-by-day basis with these racial problems. They know and they have been co-operating with the police rather than being critical of the police.

There are many police officers across this province who deal in public relations, who attend various public bodies, the meetings of service clubs, et cetera, and give lectures on just this thing. What I have been taking exception to is you blaming the police for some of the bad racial --

Mr. Lupusella: No, I am blaming you for policy directions. The responsibility is on your ministry. I am not accusing the police.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: All right, you think they should be spending more time on training and they should be the ones who are doing all of this training. Probably the police of this province have more active training in human relations and racial discrimination than any other group, and I am saying to you it’s too late when the police have to get into the act. This should be done much earlier instead of expecting the police to handle all of this. The police are doing it and I am in favour of them doing it, but there’s a limit to how much education the police can do.

They have thousands of other duties besides spreading good will amongst the various races of this province, so let them do it, and I hope they will continue, but there is a limit to how much emphasis they can place on it. You were reading some of the responsibilities that police have in the calendar. It goes on to many other things, such as enforcing the liquor Acts of this province and, of course, the Criminal Code -- and most people in this province still look on the police as the enforcers of the Criminal Code.

Let them stop one of you for a breach of the Highway Traffic Act, which takes a considerable amount of their time too, and the first question you ask him is why he’s not going around spreading good will amongst the races. You will ask him why he’s not out catching robbers. In the eyes of the public the policeman’s main job is still to maintain law and order, and I think they are doing a pretty good job on that.

You have asked why there is the drop in the work load at Aylmer. Again, it gets to the matter of cost. I understand that some of the municipal forces, and probably Metro Toronto in particular because of the entrance of the two-man car system in that year, were not free to send as many people down to Aylmer as they had originally hoped and planned to do. Again it is a matter of costs, it is a matter of whether the policemen are required more back home or in the college.

We hope gradually to extend operations at the college within the economic means that we have at our disposal.

Mr. Lupusella: First of all, in relation to the 25 per cent of physical activities which are taking place at the college, with the present scheme of 15 weeks, it is my belief that 25 per cent is too much of their time. If you want to keep a plan for physical fitness, let’s extend the number of weeks in order that you can incorporate other subjects, plus the physical activities which the constables are getting at the college.

In reply to the point that I am criticizing the police officers, I am criticizing the minister for lack of policies and directions, I am not criticizing the police officers. Police officers are taking directions from their peers. It is a duty and responsibility of the minister to redirect those policies in order that problems in our society will be eliminated.

Mr. Chairman: Does the minister have any further remarks?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: Mr. Chairman, there is one item the member for Dovercourt raised that I did not deal with.

He was looking at some figures for municipal police forces -- that the authorized strength for municipal forces was 12,285 as of December, 1976; that some 1,225 were hired during that year; and that 745 left the force. The breakdown that I have is retired, 99 -- I assume that doesn’t require any explanation -- dismissed, 24; and resignation requested, 115. Maybe you feel that requires some explanation, but here again we come to this conflict where all of us in this House want our police to be of a high calibre and high standards. Occasionally we do find police who don’t meet those standards, and I am sure you would be the first ones to want us to let those people go. Those are the people we find to be unsuitable for a variety of reasons for police service. I am suggesting that you are looking at those two figures with a jaundiced eye, that is 24 dismissals and 115 resignations requested.

It may be that those figures should be higher. Maybe you would want them higher to obtain the kind of people and the kind of standards that we think we should have.

Now, “joined another force” -- that doesn’t need any explanation either, I don’t think.

Dissatisfied, 42. When you look at the industrial change of personnel, people taking on a job and leaving it, that figure is not very great. We must put in with that “other reasons,” 369. So you have some 411 people -- against a figure of 1,225 -- who are dissatisfied or move for other reasons -- who leave of their own accord in this day of job mobility. I don’t think that is all that great. I think you will find it is much lower than in industry.

The overall attrition rate in municipal forces is six per cent, much below normal industry. In the OPP, the attrition rate is lower than that, some three per cent.

If you want good policing in this province, I think you have to expect to have those who decide for themselves that they are dissatisfied or whom the forces decide are unsuitable for it. So I’m not alarmed that the 369 left of their own accord or for other reasons. It doesn’t mean that all the 369 were dissatisfied. Some of them may have left for health reasons or --

Mr. B. Newman: Better jobs.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: -- more money. They may have gone into some other sort of security work. Those figures are not alarming to me at all. I might suggest that the figures of those dismissed or of resignations requested -- in view of the calibre of the people we want -- maybe that’s too low.

To complete the figures -- deceased, 25; and that meets us all, eventually.

Mr. Lawlor: Dealing with police forces is a very ticklish business. All members on all sides of the House are loath to tackle the issue straightforwardly as we do, for instance, on economic matters or the way the educational system is handled or in practically any other ministry.

We all, for curious reasons, approach this particular problem with kid gloves. What was mentioned earlier by the member for Sarnia is particularly true with municipal commissions -- and I’ll get around to the police college in a minute.

Mr. Nixon: I thought that commission one was carried.

Mr. Lawlor: Municipal commissions: that’s pretty well a blue stamp job. No one interrogates, no one pries, no one goes into it. They listen to the somewhat blatant type of statement made by the minister about what jolly good fellows the policemen are, et cetera. There is and there has to be, up to a point, a reverence, if you will, or at least a deep respect for the police force. In the very type of work they do, some areas of secrecy involved, militate in the favour of their not being pried into. They simply can’t be pried into.

At the same time, in these estimates down through the years -- certainly on the municipal level where 25 per cent of municipal taxpayers money is spent on the police force -- there is never, nor do we feel free to make, the swaddling type of analyses of these budgets. If municipal councillors call it into question, there is almost an immediate and equal reaction coming from the chiefs of police.

It’s an invidious business where they say, “All right, if you’re going to cut back on it, we’ll cut out those services which are the newest, freshest, most vulnerable, most exposed to the community, most community conscious, et cetera.” The youth corps comes under the axe, you see; not other internal operations.

There’s a kind of threat involved, and I think that’s bad. I think that’s bad public relations. I think there’s not enough give and take between the politicians and the force, that that particular kind of bedizenment should be brought into being and that sort of threat brought out, which immediately causes the politician to run for cover.

In an open society where we are clinging to basic democratic concepts, et cetera, we cannot allow -- and it is impermissible for any agency within that society -- to enjoy prerogatives and special functions and degrees of secrecy and a hesitant attitude, even a cowardly attitude, on the part of its official representatives. That’s what we’re here for, that’s what people elect us to do -- to be forthright enough to move in on these particular issues.

We don’t. It’s regrettable and it’s not being done. When Robarts, therefore, mentions that the police commissions ought to be more directly involved; it’s that sort of thing that he is after in other words, I think he is more delicately aware of participation in our society than the minister is. The minister holds back on these things. He’s got a sort of stick in the mud, status quo approach to reality. He thinks that human nature is somehow fundamentally depraved, that any move for change is almost invariably a move for the worse --

Hon. B. Stephenson: Depraved or deprived?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: Just judging by my own, Pat.

Mr. Lawlor: -- that this won’t rock any boats. As far as humanly possible, he leaves everything as close to remaining as it is. It is a case of “Beware of the wolf just outside our door,” -- a typical, archetypal, conservative mentality. What can you do with it?

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: Not much.

The House recessed at 6 p.m.