31st Parliament, 2nd Session

L024 - Thu 30 Mar 1978 / Jeu 30 mar 1978

The House met at 2 p.m.



Mr. Reid: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of privilege relating to an article that appeared on the front page of yesterday’s Globe and Mail entitled, “MPPs Would Have To Pay for Their Own Drinks under Plans To Control Committee Spending.” There are a number of remarks attributed to one Mr. Fleming, who is well known in these corridors. I don’t know whether Mr. Fleming in fact made those remarks or not, but it seems to me they are completely out of order, if he did make them, and that it reflects on the members of this Legislature. I would ask, sir, that this matter be referred to the procedural affairs committee for discussion and a report back to this House.

Mr. Speaker: I am aware of the article to which the hon. member refers. I am well aware that there are grounds for some consternation on behalf of members. I have discussed this with the director of administration. I have made it quite clear that any remarks of this nature should be made through the Board of Internal Economy, the responsible body for setting guidelines for expenditures under the auspices of the Office of the Assembly.

I can give you assurance that any comments in that regard will not be made by that person and that any comments the House has to make will be made through the appropriate body, which is the Board of Internal Economy. I don’t think such an occasion will occur in future.

The hon. member asks that it be referred to the procedural affairs committee. I don’t know what the wish of the House is on it. I would hope the explanation I have given would be sufficient. It is within your right to make a motion, if you so desire. It’s up to the individual member or the House, I suppose collectively, as to how they want to handle it. I have given that explanation. I think it is a clear indication of what has happened. The remarks attributed to the director of administration were in fact made. With the explanation I have given I think it is the prerogative of the member himself as to whether he wishes to make such a motion for referral to the appropriate committee.

Mr. Reid: Further to the point of privilege, Mr. Speaker, I appreciate what you have said. However, I view the remarks made by Mr. Fleming to be of such gravity and to reflect on all members of the House so that they are of grave concern to me and, I would presume, all members of the House. I feel the bounds of his responsibilities have been far overstepped in this regard. You, Mr. Speaker, have not indicated that any apology was forthcoming from the gentleman concerned or any statement made by him that he had overstepped the bounds of his responsibility. In view of that fact, I suggest the matter should be referred to the procedural affairs committee, and I would so move.

Mr. Speaker: Is it the will of the House that this matter be referred to the procedural affairs committee?

So ordered.


Ms. Bryden: I also have a point of personal privilege, Mr. Speaker. On March 16, the last day of the session prior to the recess, I asked the Minister of the Environment if his ministry had made a formal request to Metropolitan Toronto for an extension of the right to dump liquid industrial waste at the Beare Road landfill site beyond the present extension which expires April 30, 1978. He replied, “Not that I am aware of.”

I have since obtained a copy of a letter from his deputy minister, Mr. K. H. Sharpe, to Metro Toronto, dated January 5, 1978, which requests an extension until December 31, 1978. This letter was written before the appointment of the present minister, but I understand there had been a meeting held between the Metropolitan Toronto chairman and the Minister of the Environment in the week of March 13, before my question was asked, to discuss this request. Therefore, I cannot see how the minister could have been unaware that such a request had been made.

I would like to ask him to clarify whether he was misleading the House or whether he doesn’t know what is going on in his department.

Hon. Mr. McCague: Obviously, I was telling the truth. I was not aware of the letter. I did meet with the officials from Metro Toronto. An extension of the time limit was not discussed.



Hon. Mr. Grossman: Mr. Speaker, I am tabling today copies of the revised advertising directives for producers of alcoholic beverages.

Mr. Warner: Are we going to get beer in the ballpark now?

Hon. Mr. Grossman: These directives are more comprehensive and more restrictive than existing guidelines, dated March 1, 1974, which are now in force.

Mr. Laughren: Is your face flushed or is that a tan?

Mr. Nixon: Can we get a copy of this?

Hon. Mr. Grossman: Alcohol abuse is one of our most serious social problems. Excuse me, has the opposition not got a copy of the statement? They were sent along. That must be it now.

Mr. Warner: It is a flagrant violation of the rules.

Hon. Mr. Grossman: Very flagrant, but I am not going to resign.

Mr. Warner: You should.

Hon. Mr. Grossman: It costs the people of Ontario hundreds of millions of dollars annually in health care, social assistance, absenteeism and reduced productivity. In the policy review carried out by my ministry we have, therefore, given considerable emphasis to the question of what impact advertising has on the consumption of alcohol.

Further, we are very concerned about public attitudes towards alcohol. The old advertising rules do not seem to reflect the public’s awareness of the serious problem of alcohol abuse. Many concerns have been expressed about beverage alcohol advertising and we have attempted to reflect these in our new directives. Important new restrictions have been added on life-style advertising and I’ll quote the substance of some of them directly.

Beer, wine and cider advertisers must take into account the likelihood of minors and adult non-users being exposed to their advertising. The probable audience for an advertisement must consist primarily of drinking-age adults. Advertisers are required to prepare at the board’s request an annual report containing data on the ages of those exposed to their advertising in the previous one-year period, based upon independent qualified sources such as the bureau of broadcast measurement and the print measurement bureau.

All such advertisements shall be directed towards and emphasize the nature and quality of the product being advertised, and shall not imply that social acceptance, personal success, business or athletic achievement may result from the use of the product being advertised. All such advertisements shall be directed to the merits of the particular brand being advertised so as to promote brand preference and not the merits of consumption or the encouragement of excessive consumption.

Advertisements must not suggest that the consumption of alcoholic beverages per se may be a significant factor in the realization of the enjoyment of any activity. Advertisements must not suggest that participants in work, sports, hobby, recreation and other similar activities should consume alcoholic beverages whilst engaging in their work or other activity. Nor may advertising suggest that consumption of alcohol in any way enhances performance or enjoyment of these activities.

Advertisements shall not appear to suggest or recommend the consumption of beer, wine or cider prior to the driving of a motorized vehicle or participation in any sort of activity in which the participants’ safety is dependent upon normal levels of alertness, physical co-ordination or speed of response, except in authorized messages of moderation. Nor shall any advertisement depict or suggest any activity which is a breach of the Liquor Licence Act or any other provincial statute.

The frequency of broadcast advertising has also been reduced substantially. In the existing directives, a company may advertise up to 120 minutes per week per radio station. The new directives specify that no company may advertise more than 75 minutes per week in any calendar year and that the weekly average shall not exceed 55 minutes. For television, the weekly maximum per station has been 90 minutes. Our new rule will limit advertisers to a maximum of 35 minutes per week on any given station, the weekly average not to exceed 30 minutes. The yearly maximum has been decreased to 26 hours from 52 hours.

Mr. Bradley: You’re listening to the opposition.

Hon. Mr. Grossman: Stringent new rules have been added concerning minors. No messages will be permitted which in any way appear to suggest under-age drinking. Furthermore, no advertising will be allowed in publications having a readership which is predominantly under the drinking age. Nor will advertising be allowed during broadcast time when the audience is or is likely to be predominantly composed of persons under the legal drinking age.

Mr. Renwick: What hours are those?

Hon. Mr. Grossman: We are aware that the effectiveness of anything we do is tempered by the fact that US magazines would attract Canadian advertising dollars for their Canadian editions, forcing Canadian magazines to publish in other provinces. Thus a complete ban would not be particularly effective in eliminating exposure to advertising, yet it would discriminate against Ontario media.

These directives will now be issued to advertisers for immediate implementation All ads to be run in Ontario media must be cleared with the liquor licence board prior to use, thereby ensuring that the directives are being followed. The guidelines outlined today do not put an end to our review of liquor advertising. Over the next 18 months, we will be closely monitoring these new guidelines to determine whether any further changes are necessary. It is my hope that with the co-operation of the advertising industry, the manufacturers and the media, we will see more responsible, sensible ads and ones which are more clearly directed towards brand selection, not consumption.

Advertising is only one of the factors we have considered as part of our extensive and continuing review of the problems created by alcohol abuse. Further announcements will be made in the weeks ahead.




Mr. S. Smith: A question of the Treasurer, Mr. Speaker: In his attempt to pretend to this House two days ago that his reason for the 37.5 per cent increase in OHIP premiums, and his going back on his previously announced policy in 1976, was because of the Taylor committee’s exhaustive study -- and I quote: “They did an exhaustive study of these matters” -- is the Treasurer able to give me a bibliography of precisely what studies indicated 33 per cent would be an appropriate level for OHIP premiums to bear with respect to insured health costs? Can he explain why a member of the Taylor committee today has indicated its conclusion was based simply on the fact that it used to be 33 per cent -- that the Ontario Council of Health suggested it in 1973 -- all of which was before his 1976 policy, so he presumably had the benefit of that when he enunciated what was government policy at that time?

Hon. Mr. McKeough: Mr. Speaker, certainly I will be glad to check, but I suspect the original decision, going away back, was about one-third. I suspect that the council of health thought that was an appropriate number.

My colleague, the Minister of Health (Mr. Timbrell) says at one time it was about 50 per cent -- somewhat confused, as I recall, by the health insurance fund. But certainly I don’t think there are any definitive studies to show that the number should be 34 or 33 or 32 per cent. Probably there were no definitive studies to substantiate the statement that 28 per cent was a desirable long-term norm either. But I will certainly be glad to look in our records and see if there is such a study.

Perhaps in the meantime, the member can be thinking about how he is going to figure out where he is going to find the $199 million which didn’t come in. That will be an interesting study when he produces that. We are breathless with anticipation.

Mrs. Campbell: Oh yes, he will do it too.

Mr. Deans: The Treasurer is just being provocative.

Mr. S. Smith: By way of supplementary, Mr. Speaker, we look forward to the opportunity of showing him where he might be able to arrange his budgeting a little better --

Mr. Deans: I’m looking forward to that.

Mr. Makarchuk: We are looking forward to it as well.

Mr. S. Smith: -- but for today we are content to ask the Treasurer to admit publicly that basically he has gone back on his 1976 policy for the sole purpose of raising $199 million of general revenue -- that he has chosen to raise it on the OHIP premiums rather than admit that he is having a general taxation increase of any other kind. Now that he has admitted that publicly, we will be delighted to help him budget properly for the province.

Mr. Speaker: Question.

Mr. S. Smith: Will he now admit that publicly? Will he now admit publicly there is no reason for him to have gone back on his 1976 policy?

Hon. Mr. McKeough: Mr. Speaker, I will be delighted to repeat what I said on Tuesday if the member was hard of hearing --

Mr. S. Smith: “An exhaustive study” is what he said, and now he doesn’t know of any.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: And will he admit he is bankrupt of ideas as to where to find the money? There was nothing in his critic’s speech -- all that was in the critic’s speech was more spending --

Mr. Bradley: Don’t shout.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: -- and not one way to save money in this province, and he knows it. He is bankrupt of ideas.

Ms. Peterson: Supplementary: In view of the history of the Treasurer reneging on his promises -- and I quote, for example, his reneging on the Edmonton commitment, a commitment of the government; his reneging on the guidelines for OHIP financing from 28 to 33 per cent; his reneging on the Smith committee guidelines where he changed the rules over a two-year period -- his debt is, in fact, higher than was previously arranged under the Smith committee --

Mr. Speaker: The original question dealt specifically with OHIP premiums.

Mr. Peterson: I have to set this up, Mr. Speaker. It is very important.

Mr. Speaker: As long as it is within the framework of the original question, and that dealt with OHIP premiums.

Mr. Peterson: This is an “in view of,” Mr. Speaker. In view of the fact that his commitment to balance the budget in 1981 is going to be by virtue of selling off assets and not by meeting current revenues with current expenditures, how can we trust one thing that he says any more? I suggest to him he has no credibility. How can anybody trust what he is saying?

Mr. Bolan: Tell him to resign.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: Mr. Speaker, in view of the fact that the Liberal Party -- reactionary as they are --

Mr. Cassidy: You are two birds of a feather, you know, and you go in hand together.


Hon. Mr. McKeough: -- spent half their reply to my budget saying we were too far in debt and had spent too much money and then spent the other half saying how much more money they would spend on various programs, how can we believe or take seriously anything the members opposite say?

Mr. Ruston: We can’t believe anything you say.

Mr. Peterson: A fair, intelligent, articulate response.

Mr. Warner: Supplementary: Based on the minister’s first response about the amount of revenue which would have to be raised, and noting that it is entirely in keeping with his comments on pages 15 and 19 of the first section of his budget, will he now clearly tell us that the premium is, in fact, a revenue-raising device and that it is not at all related to whatever health program the government cares to run?

Mr. S. Smith: Tell us about the exhaustive study, Darcy.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: There is no question that admission fees to Ontario Place or to provincial parks or premiums raise revenue. I didn’t go to the London School of Economics but I can figure that out, yes. But it is not a tax.

Mr. Martel: It’s pretty obvious that you didn’t go there.

Mr. Peterson: You didn’t even go to high school.

Mr. Speaker: I think we have had sufficient supplementaries.

Some hon. members: One more, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Speaker: The hon. Leader of the Opposition with his second question.

Mr. Deans: The only reason this is not a tax is that you choose not to make it a tax.


Mr. S. Smith: A question for the Treasurer, since I believe the material is put out by his ministry; anyway, the Premier (Mr. Davis) is absent.

Mr. Kerrio: Don’t hold that against him.

Mr. S. Smith: Given the fact that the Treasurer is very good at telling the working people of Ontario how they should restrain themselves and how they should find $199 million to help him do his budgeting, how does he justify this 12½-ounce package of government propaganda entitled, “Ontario at the Conference of First Ministers in February,” which apparently has been mailed by the Treasury to more than 90,000 addresses in Ontario, accompanied by a two-page letter from the Premier, and which probably cost in the neighbourhood of $100,000, although he may have more up-to-date figures on that?

Some hon. members: Propaganda.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: Mr. Speaker, I can think of nothing that this government has done --

Mr. Warner: That’s why you should resign. You’ve done nothing.


Hon. Mr. McKeough: I can think of nothing that this government has done on a more co-operative basis and that will undoubtedly prove to be to the lasting benefit of all of Canada --

Mr. S. Smith: Than sending this garbage to 90,000 people at public expense.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: -- more than the effort and the work we put into the preparation for the first ministers’ conference. I am surprised that the Leader of the Opposition would say it is garbage inasmuch as it includes a communiqué signed by the Prime Minister of Canada and two Liberal Premiers. If he calls that garbage, that’s his business.

Mr. Martel: That’s the best garbage I’ve heard you say all day.

Mr. S. Smith: Will the Treasurer report to the House the detailed cost of this public relations venture and which firm carried it out? Will he explain what justification, if any, he sees for having to send it to more than 90,000 people -- perhaps even that is a low estimate, and I would like to have an accurate one -- given the fact that all the documents in the package were well covered in the press at the time of the conference?

Mr. Deans: I think we should eliminate the leader’s questions.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: Mr. Speaker, obviously some part of that question will require some research in terms of the costs, and when those are available I will be glad to provide them.

Mr. S. Smith: After exhaustive study?

Hon. Mr. McKeough: No, we will have to wait until the invoices are in. Again, I am not a doctor, but that is normally what you have to do before you can get the precise costs. And one would want to be precise.


Hon. Mr. McKeough: But I say this: I will justify this right now by saying the basis of attempting to restore confidence to the people, to the businessmen and to the leaders in this province is something that is well worth any cost entailed. We’ve done it before and we will continue to do it.

Mr. Conway: Propaganda.

Mrs. Campbell: We don’t have the money.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: We think we have a responsibility to indicate what government is doing and to invite response from the people, and the Leader of the Opposition will find, in fact, that the Premier’s letter does that.

Mr. Conway: Take a Gallup poll.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: We on this side, and the Premier, are interested in what the people think, even if the Leader of the Opposition is not.

Mr. S. Smith: Send them blank paper next time; it will do more than that rubbish.

An hon. member: Are you interested in what Mike Cassidy has to say?


Mr. Cassidy: Mr. Speaker, I have the feeling that both the Treasurer and the Leader of the Opposition got wound up over the Easter break and are still sort of acting in a frenzied fashion.

An hon. member: Did you get unwound?

Mr. Ruston: Did you go south, Mike?



Mr. Cassidy: I have a question of the Minister of Industry and Tourism. In view of the fact that the Can-Car division of Hawker Siddeley has revealed that its truck-trailer plant in Mississauga, which was formerly in Thunder Bay, will be closed on May 12 with a permanent loss of between 160 and 170 jobs, will the minister indicate what steps the government will now take to ensure an end to the loss of production in this important area of the automobile manufacturing industry?

An hon. member: Nothing.

Mrs. Campbell: Same as before.

Hon. Mr. Rhodes: I’m afraid I can’t tell the hon. member what I can do to end the closing of a particular facility. I’m not totally familiar with what is causing their shutdown. I would like to look into the details of that particular matter.

Mr. Philip: Supplementary: In view of the fact that the orders were so high in January that Hawker Siddeley was trying to get a second shift added to the plant’s work force, is the minister satisfied, or will the minister find out if the plant is being closed because of low profit -- profitability -- or are Canadians once more going to be thrown out of work because of the arbitrary actions of a multinational company?

Mr. S. Smith: They choke on that word “profitability.”

Hon. Mr. Rhodes: Mr. Speaker, I understand that the word “profit” is very difficult for that party to get out.

Mr. Deans: In Ontario there isn’t much of it to talk about.

Mr. Makarchuk: Not at all.

Hon. Mr. Rhodes: I can tell the hon. member that that particular matter is now being looked into by the Ministry of Labour and we will be made aware of what the situation is.

Mr. Mackenzie: Supplementary: In view of the fact that this shut-down involves trucks and vans, I’m wondering if the minister would also look into the fact that we understand the renovation of the Jefferson plant in Detroit is for vans and that may mean we don’t get the proposed van line in Windsor.

Hon. Mr. Rhodes: It is my understanding that the facility the hon. leader of the New Democratic Party asked about manufactures trailers. It does not manufacture vans or trucks. Perhaps the hon. member’s leader could tell him that that’s the situation.

Mr. Cassidy: Supplementary: In view of the recent intervention by this government in order to ensure that Hawker Siddeley, the company that owns Can-Car, would get the TTC streetcar order in Thunder Bay rather than have the order go to Quebec, will the minister intervene in order to ensure that this truck plant is kept open or that the operation is sold as a going concern to a company that’s prepared to keep the operation going?

Hon. Mr. Rhodes: I think the hon. member is aware of the fact that in other cases we have certainly done that, if there was a possibility of continuing the operation. We certainly are not aiding and abetting companies to close down. If we can keep them open, we will do so. If there is a possibility of someone purchasing that operation and continuing to operate, we’d be quite happy to assist to see that it’s done. However, the hon. member, I think, has to be realistic enough to realize that if that company is going to close down for good and valid reasons, there is very little we can do to keep it open. But we will look into the whole situation.

Mr. Cassidy: Two months ago they were going like crazy.


Mr. Cassidy: A question to the Attorney General: In view of the widespread concern in the province about child abuse, in view of the mounting evidence that the children’s aid societies and the courts do not seem able to cope with the problem, and in view of the specific report of the children’s aid society handling of the case of Adrienne Paquette in Ottawa which has been tabled this week, will the minister and the government launch a public inquiry under the Public Inquiries Act in order to have a full public examination of the circumstances surrounding these recent tragic deaths of children and to make a recommendation on a more adequate means of preventing child abuse for the future?

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: There are a number of very concerned groups in the province which are studying this problem on an ongoing basis, because there is no question it is a matter that must be of great concern to every thinking citizen. In view of the commitment of a number of groups which have responsibility in this area, I don’t think a judicial inquiry would serve any useful purpose.

Mr. McClellan: Supplementary: Would the Attorney General not agree that it is inappropriate to leave the search for a solution to the problem of child abuse to the ministry and the children’s aid societies which are the problem, and that only a public inquiry under the Public Inquiries Act, independent of both the ministry and the societies, is demanded?


Hon. Mr. McMurtry: To reiterate what I said a moment ago, Mr. Speaker, there are a number of groups outside the ministry with a direct responsibility and the children’s aid society who are actively involved in solutions to this problem. It is, therefore, not accurate to say the responsibility for a resolution or alleviation of this problem has been left or delegated solely to one ministry or to the children’s aid societies.

Mr. Renwick: Mr. Speaker, by way of a supplementary question, before the Attorney General shuts his mind to the idea Of a public inquiry will he not recognize that the problem in child abuse is that none of the many agencies involved, nor the professional people involved, have any clear indication of what their responsibilities are? Will he not also recognize that most of the agencies and the professional people have very divided loyalties on the question, and that it is only by way of a public inquiry that there will be an opportunity to sort out and to determine what the responsibilities are with respect to the rights of the children who have been abused?

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: Mr. Speaker, I don’t think I can answer this question simply because I do not agree with the premises put forward by the hon. member, on which the question is based.

Mr. Warner: The minister just doesn’t understand.

Mr. Lewis: One day he will agree and it will be too late.


Mr. Conway: Mr. Speaker, my question is of the Minister of Health. Considering that section 31 of the Health Insurance Act requires the Ontario Medical Association to provide six months’ notice to the minister for any revision in the fee schedule, I’m wondering whether or not it has given six months’ notice to him of a planned revision in the fee schedule? If it has served notice of its intention to so do, when was that and what is the climate of the minister’s response to that?

Hon. Mr. Timbrell: Mr. Speaker, I can’t recall the exact wording of that section of the Act, but I think it is that the OMA must serve notice of intention to revise, which was given. Again, I don’t recall the exact date, but it was in September or October, well within the six months. Since then the Clawson committee has met on several occasions.

Members may recall that at one point the OMA indicated it intended to write what it calls its realistic fee schedule as per the instructions of the membership of the OMA. I have met on several occasions with the president of the OMA in recent weeks and months to discuss this proposal, and I expect the Clawson committee will get back together in the very near future to finish the process of setting up the schedules for 1978-79.

Mr. Conway: I have a supplementary, Mr. Speaker. Can the Minister of Health indicate whether, in his ongoing discussions with the Treasurer (Mr. McKeough) in so far as health-care financing in this province is concerned, there has been a discussion about proposed increases in the OMA fee schedule? Has he discussed this matter with the Treasurer, and can he tell us whether or not the reports in the public at large of something in the order of a 36 per cent across the board fee increase is in any way acceptable to him? Has the minister made budgetary plans to accept in whole or in part that kind of substantial increase?

Hon. Mr. Timbrell: Mr. Speaker, let me repeat what I’ve said several times publicly, and which has been reported -- I’m surprised it hasn’t reached the member’s ears -- that there is no way the government can consider a 36 per cent increase in a fee schedule -- a schedule of benefits, that is, to the practitioners of the province. I think that’s been reflected in the public reports. The reaction of the OMA is that it accepts that. It didn’t expect the government would do that. However, what the OMA has been directed to do by its membership is to draft -- to use the expression again -- a realistic fee schedule.

Mr. Haggerty: How about Darcy’s 37.5 per cent?

Hon. Mr. Timbrell: I should also point out there is a fee schedule and a schedule of benefits of OHIP. They are two separate things. The member should also be aware that except for a very few doctors whose fiscal year ends after April 14, all but those few will be subject to the anti-inflation control programme ceilings until the end of 1978.

Mr. Conway: One final supplementary: Can the minister indicate whether or not his ongoing ministry-OMA committee on fee adjustment is now expected to discuss the matter spoken of in section 31? I just wanted to be sure that I understood the minister’s answer to the first question, as to whether or not he had received notice formally, in accordance with section 31 of the Health Insurance Act -- and that the section says, “at least six months before any proposed revision”; not intention, but it says, and I quote, “at least six months before any proposed revision of the schedule of fees,” that he be notified. Has the minister been notified in accordance with that Act, quite apart from what his ongoing adjustment committee may say, and will he repeat for me when he was notified of that?

Hon. Mr. Timbrell: Mr. Speaker, I will get the exact date for the member if he likes. I will have it phoned to his office, but it was in the fall of 1977. Let me point out that he refers to the Clawson committee as the joint ministerial-OMA committee; that is not entirely accurate, since of course the membership on the government side is one from the Ministry of Health and the other two from other ministries, senior officials. The chairman of the committee is Mr. Harold Clawson, who is an independent, outside individual. Going back to 1973 when the Premier (Mr. Davis) and the OMA agreed on the establishment of the committee, one of the strongest selling points of it was that the chairman would be independent of government or the OMA. But as I say, will be glad to let the member know the date of the letter, but so far as I’m concerned section 31 has in fact been lived up to.

Mr. Peterson: A supplementary?

Mr. Speaker: The hon. member for Sudbury. We have had sufficient supplementaries.

Mr. Peterson: There have been two supplementary questions only.

Mr. Speaker: We had the initial question and three supplementaries; nobody indicated they wanted to intervene.

Mr. Peterson: Mr. Speaker, it is a very important issue.

Mr. Speaker: Do you want to challenge it? The hon. member for Sudbury.


Mr. Germa: Mr. Speaker, a question of the Minister of Labour: The Minister of Labour will be aware, of course, of the death of Mr. Irving on February 16, 1978, in Inco’s Frood mine; she will also be aware of the death of Mr. Sam Beal, August 17, 1976, in Inco’s Frood mine; she is also aware of the death of Mr. James Cullen, April 16, 1976, in Inco’s Frood mine; but is the minister aware that testimony presented at the coroner’s inquest as a result of these deaths has destroyed the credibility of her mining inspector in that area, Mr. Balfour Thomas, and is the minister planning to move that man out of the area as requested by Local 6500 of the United Steelworkers?

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, a complete transcript of the most recent inquest has arrived on my desk; it is being examined carefully. The recommendations of the jury are being examined as well, and a further investigation is being carried on by the ministry. I shall be pleased to report to the House when we’ve completed that study.

Mr. Germa: A supplementary: It is quite clear in the Mining Act that the mine manager has total responsibility for safety of workers. Is it the minister’s intention to lay criminal charges against International Nickel Company as a result of the death of Mr. Irving on February 16, 1978?

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, as I said, the entire matter was being investigated by the ministry and when our decisions are made I shall be very pleased to report back to the House; that is a part of the investigation.


Hon. Mr. Brunelle: On March 14 last the hon. member for Welland-Thorold (Mr. Swart) asked me a question about the translation into the French language of the Credit Unions and Caisses Populaires Act and regulations, whether it had been completed. I am informed that both of these Acts and their regulations are in the process of being translated and should be available in the French language later this year.

In a supplementary question I was asked the schedule for the Education Act, Health and Social Services Act, and translation relating to the driver training program. I am pleased to inform that the Education Act, the General Welfare Assistance Act, the Child Welfare Act and the Developmental Services Act are at present being translated. The Coroners Act, parts of the Highway Safety Act, the Human Rights Code, the Construction Safety Act summary and the Women’s Employment Act summary have been translated.

A number of pamphlets concerning driver training have been translated, and in reprinting some of these pamphlets they will be printed in both languages. Other Acts and regulations will be printed in the French language. As an example, 17 Acts administered by the Ministry of Community and Social Services will be printed in the French language as funds become available.

Mr. Swart: I thank the secretary for providing me with a copy of his answer ahead of time; but perhaps he will forgive me if I am a little sceptical about the in-depth study when he, in the letter --

Mr. Speaker: Question.

Mr. Swart: Will he forgive me for being sceptical? I suggest you would understand that that is a question, Mr. Speaker.

An hon. member: You’re forgiven, Mel.

Mr. Bradley: You are forgiven now.

Mr. Swart: Will he forgive me for being sceptical when he states that the Credit Unions Act and the Caisses Populaires Act and the regulations are both being translated. Of course, this is in fact only one Act -- the Credit Union and Caisse Populaires Act. Would he tell me at this time the schedule for the completion of the other Acts, the General Welfare Assistance Act, the Child Welfare Act and the Developmental Services Act, which he says are being translated now? What is the schedule for the completion of those?

Hon. Mr. Brunelle: The hon. member can appreciate that it takes considerable time to do these things. Those Acts are in the process of being translated. Just in funds alone, for the fiscal year 1976-77, $216,797 was spent in the translation of various Acts and pamphlets. So those Acts I just mentioned are in the process of being translated. Hopefully, some of them will be completed this year.


Mr. Epp: I have a question for the Treasurer. Whereas the alternative property tax system which is at present under discussion relies largely on a shift in the tax burden to vacant, unused land in order to relieve the residential property taxpayer, has the Treasurer calculated how this will affect Ontario’s tourist business? Specifically, has the Treasurer studied the impact of his proposed system on resort owners in areas like Muskoka who own unused land for the recreational use of their clients?

Hon. Mr. McKeough: That is a problem which has been brought to our attention very forcibly in the course of discussion over the last six months by the member for Muskoka, my colleague, the Minister of Natural Resources (Mr. F. S. Miller).

It has also been brought to my attention very forcibly and very forthrightly, and in a somewhat surprising way, by the district council for Muskoka, who effectively have said -- I paraphrase them -- that we are not interested simply in lowering residential taxes by $1, $5 or $10 a year on houses or cottages if it means an enormous boost in taxation on a few manufacturing firms. And there are a few in Muskoka, all of whom, I might say, experienced a rather sharp drop in taxation when the reassessment came in five years ago, or whenever it was. They went away down, and the cottage properties, which some members may be aware of, went up.

However, there could be some shift now to manufacturing in Muskoka particularly, which is of concern to the district council, and there could be some shift to the resort properties, particularly those with large acreages the member has mentioned.

I mentioned in the January 4 statement that we were going to have to do something about this. We have not firmed it up; I am not sure, specifically, whether the committee has addressed that problem, although it is aware of it. They may have a recommendation; if they don’t, we will do something similar, I would think, to what we have done with golf clubs, which seems generally acceptable. I can’t give a definite answer as to how we would propose to go about it, but it is a concern to us, as I have already said to the member, and very much to the district councils.


Mr. Laughren: I have a question of the Minister of the Treasury, Economics and Intergovernmental Affairs. I wonder if the minister recalls making a speech to the Conference Board in Canada in which he gave the conference board a provincial perspective on competition policy, and whether he recalls in that speech saying the following: “The most shocking realization is that the largest proportion of the graduates of our institutions of higher learning, and often the best, find their way into public service.”


I am wondering if the Treasurer could assure us that he has not been guilty of hiring the best in his ministry; or if he has been hiring the best, how it is that that fits with his policy, as stated in this speech; or if he hasn’t done that, perhaps that is his explanation for the quality of budgets we’ve been receiving in the province of Ontario.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: I do recall that speech, and I have echoed similar sentiments on a number of occasions. It is fashionable, not among members of the member’s party obviously, to take note of and complain of the increasing amount of capital resources which are being used or have been used in the last few years, hopefully levelling -- and certainly in this province a declining share of GNP has been absorbed by government in the last couple of years; but that, as I say, other than in the member’s party, has been a cause for concern. As a matter of fact, even the Premier of Saskatchewan signed a -- “piece of garbage” the Leader of the Opposition calls it --

Mr. Laughren: Answer the question.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: -- saying that governments should restrain themselves and take less out of the economy than they have been taking. What is sometimes overlooked is that governments, universities, colleges and hospitals have been taking an increasingly large number, or were, of university graduates, of well-trained people. One wonders how much stronger our industrial strategy totally and our industrial fabric in this country might be, or for that matter even our mining and forestry industries might be, if so many of the best brains and talents, at high salaries, had not gone into various parts of the public service in its total aspect.

Mr. Swart: It sure hasn’t slowed up any under your party.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: There has been a great deal of research done, for example at universities, publicly-funded, by very bright people. My own view is that some of that research might have been better done in the private sector. I wouldn’t expect the member to agree with those thoughts.

Ms. Gigantes: Funded by American corporations, no doubt.

Mr. S. Smith: What about the Urban Transportation Development Corporation?

Mr. Laughren: Supplementary: Would the Treasurer agree, first of all that he hasn’t answered my question as to whether or not his ministry has attempted to hire the best people in order to give us the best public service in the province of Ontario? Further, regardless of whether he’s hired the best people for his ministry or not, would he please cease and desist in his sleazy, dogmatic and sanctimonious attacks on the public sector.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: Mr. Speaker, the quality of the Ontario public service does not have to be defended by me; it is a fine public service.

Mr. Swart: It is being destroyed by you.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: I would only say that again, although I would not expect the member to agree, the quality and stature and standing, of the economists particularly in the Ministry of Treasury, Economics and Intergovernmental Affairs, going back some 10 or 15 years now --

Mr. Cassidy: It is what you do with your advice that is so bad.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: -- are among the highest and best in the country. We are continually being raided by other governments, not the least by Saskatchewan.

Mr. Laughren: They’re hiring the best.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: Do we hire the best? I can recall on two specific occasions attempting to hire people who either were, or were about to become, financial critics for the New Democratic Party. We slipped on both those occasions

Mr. Martel: You didn’t get the best then.

Mr. Peterson: If you are sure you want to defend MacMillan, go ahead Darcy.


Mr. Riddell: A question of the Minister of Agriculture and Food: Can the minister tell us the status of his food land guidelines, since the deadline for briefs from municipal councils throughout Ontario was December 31? Have the guidelines been redrafted yet based on the comments received?

Hon. W. Newman: We received 96 responses. We did have a request after the end of December, I think it was by the London Chamber of Commerce, to meet with them after that date, and we did. We did meet with a couple of other groups. We have gone over the guidelines. We have looked at all the comments coming in. I would say that by and large the comments coming on the 96 presentations, the majority of them, basically support the basic guidelines we originally put out.

Mr. Riddell: Supplementary: Can the minister give us a final date when these guidelines are to take effect and how are the guidelines to be implemented?

Hon. W. Newman: The final date will be determined at the appropriate time and --

Mr. Makarchuk: In the fullness of time.

Hon. W. Newman: We are still discussing. We have had several meetings with them now. I can’t give you a firm date, but as soon as possible.


Mr. Deans: Mr. Speaker, I have a question of the Minister of the Environment. Would the minister obtain for his ministry the results of all the investigations conducted into the dumping of liquid industrial waste at the Upper Ottawa Street dump in the city of Hamilton? Would he pay particular attention to the statement that there is no cause for alarm with regard to the levels of pollution in the Red Hill Creek which flows immediately adjacent to the dump? Would he bear in mind that the creek runs through a recreation area, and at the moment, because of the speed with which it flows, much of the effluent is travelling so rapidly that it is very difficult to pick up? Finally, would he prepare for the House a statement with regard to how it could be that there were three carriers banned from dumping liquid industrial waste at the dump when about four or five months ago when I asked the same basic question I was assured the waste which was being dumped at the dump was safe, and guaranteed not to be causing pollution?

Hon. Mr. McCague: Yes, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Hall: Mister “vague.”


Hon. Mr. Norton: Mr. Speaker, I have the answer to a question asked previously by the hon. member for Bellwoods (Mr. McClellan). I was prepared to respond prior to the adjournment of the House for the Easter break but unfortunately the time I was ready happened to be on a day when the hon. member and I were not in the House at the same time.

The question related to the closing of Hilltop Acres, a Metropolitan Toronto home for the aged. As I stated at the time in a very brief response, and prior to the hon. member’s supplementary question, I had met with the Metropolitan Toronto council members and officials on November 18 and agreed to assist Metro in providing for alternative accommodation and relocation of those residents should they desire to close Hilltop.

I also stated that while it was never, certainly, the policy of my ministry, as expressed by or agreed to by me, to encourage the closing, except perhaps in so far as the question of safety was involved, I would inquire as to the staff level contacts with Metro staff.

Clearly with respect to both short-term and long-term planning for facilities and services across the province there would be discussions between members of my staff and the staffs of various municipalities and agencies operating such facilities, and providing such services.

Some years ago when the replacement planning was on the way for the Christie Street properties and the old Lambert Lodge being phased out, and the new Castleview-Wychwood Towers was being planned, there were recurring references to neighbouring Hilltop Acres. The distance between the two homes, as the hon. member for Bellwoods knows very well, is quite short, running east-west along Davenport Road.

At that time, and again on subsequent occasions, the deficiencies of Hilltop Acres with respect to program were discussed. But we had not received through Metropolitan Toronto the comments of the building commissioner and the fire chief at that time.

Early in 1977 discussions between the director of the senior citizens branch and the office on aging and the Metro department of social services’ director of institutional services referred to several long-range plans involving the eight Metropolitan Toronto homes for the aged under the Homes for the Aged and Rest Homes Act Utilization patterns were discussed, and a co-ordination of service delivery with the charitable homes for the aged, nursing homes, chronic care, hospitals, senior citizens, housing under the Ontario Housing Corporation, and the Metropolitan Toronto housing authority and community support services.

Again, Hilltop Acres was identified at that time as having certain deficiencies with respect to the total spectrum of care. My understanding is that several options for the use of the property were discussed, including the annex, which is a separate building connected by tunnel to be an administrative office for Metro staff in the institutional division, handling assessment and placement in their preventive care program. Another was the retention of certain cottage units on a trial basis for married couples or unrelated groups of elderly people wishing to attempt semi-independent living on the site.

None of these discussions was formally presented either within the ministry or to Metro council. They were simply the basis of staff concerns and options. It is perhaps unfortunate that the news of the closure became public before there was sufficient opportunity for consultation with the residents’ council. However, in spite of the difficulties which have been created by the intervention in this decision, which I will deal with very briefly, by both municipal councils involved, attempts were made then to work with the residents’ council, the individual residents and their families and the staffs of the homes.

My ministry, through the senior citizens branch and the Metro Toronto district office, as well as the Metro region of the Ontario Association of Homes for the Aged, is planning a workshop on relocation on April 4 with all of the homes in this area being involved. I would note that with the advanced knowledge of the residents of Strachan Houses and the Church Home for the Aged, both will be closing and relocating in the St. Paul’s L’Amoreaux complex in Agincourt. The charitable homes for the aged and other facilities in Metro will be asked to assist should any residents of Hilltop choose to apply for admission to one of their homes where there are suitable vacancies. The director in my ministry who is concerned with this has asked that all red tape and paper work be minimized to effect such transfers for the benefit of the Hilltop Acres residents.

The decisions regarding the closure of Metro’s Hilltop Acres were made by the Metropolitan Toronto council in a vote of 22 to 13. Then, more recently, the matter was considered by the city of Toronto council and the closing was endorsed by a vote of 12 to 9. I did indicate to the hon. member that to the best of my knowledge my agreement was not necessary for the closure of Hilltop Acres.

Technically, under subsection 2 of section 12 of the Homes for the Aged and Rest Homes Act, there shall be no change in site and no sale or disposal of any part thereof and no alteration to or in any building or to the grounds of the home without my approval. In light of the information which I have and had at that time, we have from the various authorities the decisions of the two municipal councils. I would not normally withhold my approval under those circumstances when formal requests are submitted by the council of the municipalities that are involved.

Mr. Speaker: Due to the lengthy nature of that statement, I think it would have been more appropriately put under ministerial statements than as an answer to a former question. I am going to add five minutes to the question period.

Mr. McClellan: I thought it was a very simple question. The minister could have answered that question yes or no.


Mr. Bradley: My question is for the Minister of Government Services. In light of the fact that the Ontario Supreme Court began its spring session in St. Catharines Tuesday in the well-known atrocious conditions that exist at the old Lincoln county courthouse, which included the herding of more than 20 lawyers and court officers into a 20-foot-square room to discuss two criminal, 13 civil and 19 non-jury cases --

Mr. Makarchuk: That’s more like a horror room.

Mr. Lewis: You can’t herd lawyers.

Mr. Bradley: -- that’s just as an example -- is the minister in a position to announce a precise timetable for the commencement of construction of a new courthouse?

Mr. Conway: The legacy of Bob Welch.

Hon. Mr. Henderson: I am sure the member is quite aware the property has been acquired. Plans are well under way. To give him the precise date at this time is not possible.

Mr. Martel: What are you going to do about the Sudbury one?

Mr. Bradley: Supplementary: In view of the alleged 12 per cent unemployment rate in St. Catharines, would the minister be prepared to authorize this project as a top priority for 1978 and thereby provide a much-needed boost to the Niagara Peninsula construction industry?

Hon. Mr. Henderson: I got the same lecture yesterday from the government House leader (Mr. Welch) telling me that I had to do this and do that to help employment in that area.

Mr. S. Smith: A split in the cabinet.

Hon. Mr. Henderson: I can assure the member we are giving every consideration to any project that will help the employment situation.

Mr. Peterson: Lean on him.

Mr. Martel: What about the courthouse in Sudbury? The minister should build that one too.

Mr. S. Smith: The government House leader should pick on someone his own size.



Mr. Swart: My question is to the Minister of Transportation and Communications. In view of the joint decision between him and the federal Minister of Transport to proceed with the construction of a new bridge across the Welland Canal in Port Colborne, which was just recently announced, would the minister not recognize that the reason stated for proceeding with the construction of that interruptible bridge crossing negates all the arguments which have been used by the Hon. Otto Lang and several local Liberals, including the MP for Welland, against replacing the Port Robinson bridge? They say they’re going to tear down all of the bridges including the bridge which was knocked down by a freighter in August 1974, and replace them with tunnels.

Mr. Mancini: Ask the question.

Mr. Swart: In view of that decision to build that bridge in Port Colborne, which negates those reasons, would the minister now get in touch with the Hon. Otto Lang and urge him to proceed with the reconstruction of the bridge in Port Robinson?

Hon. Mr. Snow: I think the bridge at Port Robinson is somewhat different from the proposed bridge at Port Colborne. We have been working with the municipal council of the city of Port Colborne and the council of the region of Niagara to improve the crossing situation at Port Colborne, which is partially a provincial responsibility and partially a federal responsibility. It would now appear that after about two years of negotiations and meetings we have come to a conclusion on an interim solution at least for that situation.

The Port Robinson bridge, as I recall, was removed by a collision with a ship, which is within the operating authority totally of the federal government and the St. Lawrence Seaway. I would be pleased to advise Mr. Lang again, as he I’m sure is well aware, that the community there would like to have that bridge replaced, but it is not my responsibility to replace it.

Mr. Swart: Supplementary: In answer to his responsibility, would the minister not recall that on March 15, 1976, according to Hansard, when I raised the question of the Port Robinson bridge with him and asked him then to contact the Minister of Transport -- and I’ll use the exact words: “I would ask that you take this up with the federal Minister of Transport and ask him to consider the replacement of that bridge” -- the minister replied to me: “I can’t disagree with your viewpoint. I think I’ll repeat your words verbatim or maybe send a copy of Hansard to my federal counterpart and see what he has to say.”

In view of that opinion at that time, does the minister not now think it would be appropriate that he approach the federal minister and again ask him --

An hon. member: Time.

Mr. Swart: -- that that bridge be replaced and express his view that he is willing to have that in lieu of the tunnel?

Hon. Mr. Snow: Mr. Speaker, I talk to Mr. Lang quite frequently on a great many different subjects and make a great many requests and proposals to him. I’ll be glad to add this to the list again.


Mr. Kerrio: Mr. Speaker, I have a question of the Minister of the Environment: Is the minister aware of a report published in our local Niagara Falls papers and subsequently in the Globe and Mail of the Olin Corporation of Niagara Falls, New York, dumping into the Niagara River between the years 1970 and 1977 some 38 tons of mercury?

Hon. Mr. McCague: Yes.

Mr. Kerrio: Supplementary: In view of the hazard that this poses to the people in the area, I wonder if the minister would share with this House if he has any liaison at all with the authorities on the other side as to these hazardous conditions so that he would make himself aware of the dangers and what he might propose to make this known to the public along the waterway?

Hon. Mr. McCague: Mr. Speaker, I have asked that the matter be looked into and I will report to the member.


Mr. Makarchuk: A question to the Minister of Industry and Tourism: In view of the fact that the Chinese government has indicated that it will be holding a farm equipment trade fair in October, can the minister indicate what initiatives have been taken or will be taken by his government to ensure that Ontario participates, in order that we may get our fair share of possible farm equipment orders?

Hon. Mr. Rhodes: Mr. Speaker, I wasn’t aware that the Chinese government was coming over. I don’t have direct contact with them. But certainly, if there’s a trade show around where we might be able to sell some farm implements, we’ll be there.

An hon. member: Right on top of things.

Mr. Lewis: Given Frank Miller and Cuba, you should set up relations with China.

Mr. Makarchuk: I don’t expect the minister to read the Peking Review, but I hope he reads the Globe and Mail; the item was carried in the Globe and Mail.

Can he assure this House that he will take definite action to make sure Canadian farm implement manufacturers have an opportunity or perhaps are directed to participate in that trade fair and, in view of the fact that the federal people’s track record in automobiles or the Alaska pipeline is pretty bad, that perhaps he will take the responsibility to ensure we get to that show?

Mr. Deans: Show some initiative.

Hon. W. Newman: The member has never been to a farm machinery show in his life. He wouldn’t know what was going on

Hon. B. Stephenson: Has he ever been to Canton?

Hon. Mr. Rhodes: I can assure the hon. member that if there is a trade show in which we feel there is an opportunity for Canadian manufacturers to sell products, we will be there. We will not go quite as far as the hon. member might, and direct the people in the private sector to go to these shows, but we will certainly suggest they should go; and I think they will go on their own.

Mr. Deans: Of course not; heaven forbid.

Mr. McClellan: Let them lay off another 1,000 men.

Mr. MacDonald: The minister’s colleague Bob Macaulay used to tell them to get off their butts and promote.

Mr. Deans: Look where Bob Macaulay is today.


Mr. Mancini: Mr. Speaker, I have a question of the Deputy Premier. In view of the new federal legislation passed in July 1977, which allows consultations with the provinces over the matter of immigration, and in the light of the fact that the provinces of Nova Scotia, Quebec and Saskatchewan have signed agreements with the federal government as of February 21, 1978, can the Deputy Premier inform the House what position his cabinet has taken on this particular issue? Can he inform the House of what specific proposals his cabinet has put before the federal government?

Hon. Mr. Welch: Mr. Speaker, that question should be referred to the Provincial Secretary for Social Development.

Mr. Mancini: Mr. Speaker, we asked a question similar to this of that particular minister and we did not get a satisfactory answer; that’s why we’re directing it to the Deputy Premier.

Hon. Mrs. Birch: Is the member prepared to have my answer?

Hon. Mr. Welch: Is the hon. member prepared to have the answer of my cabinet colleague now?

Mr. Mancini: Yes.

Hon. Mrs. Birch: Mr. Speaker, the answer may not have been satisfactory but at the time I was asked that was the only information that was available. I’m quite prepared to table a letter that was sent to Mr. Cullen.


Mr. Cooke: Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the Minister of Labour. In view of the announcement by the Unemployment Insurance Commission that they will be loosening their requirements for UIC people to look for jobs, would the Minister of Labour be willing to bring about the same policy change for people on workmen’s compensation benefits?

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, that portion of the present Workmen’s Compensation Act which provides for assistance for vocational rehabilitation does direct some guidelines to the vocational rehabilitation officers.

I would remind the hon. member that the relaxation is not universal, I gather, as far as UIC is concerned. It depends upon the levels of unemployment in the various areas.

I would be very willing to consider that seriously.

Mr. Cooke: When the minister is looking at this proposal, would she take into consideration cities like Windsor, where there is 11.9 per cent unemployment, and cities like St. Catharines, where there is 12 per cent unemployment? At present, her guidelines require WCB recipients to look for three jobs per day, or make 15 applications per week. How can she possibly justify this and will she take immediate action?

Hon. B. Stephenson: I informed the hon. member that I would be willing to consider it, yes.


Mr. Peterson: I have a question of the Minister of Transportation and Communications. Could he inform this House as to what studies he has done on the impact for local industry of the seaway tolls? Can he tell us what the position of his government is and what negotiations he has had with the federal government on this issue?

Hon. Mr. Snow: Mr. Speaker, my ministry did carry out some studies and prepared a report. I would be glad to send the hon. member a copy of that report. There is no problem there.

We have had discussions certainly with the federal government. We have made known our concerns with the impact that increased seaway tolls might very well have on a number of major Ontario industries and we have opposed the increase in the tolls by the St. Lawrence Seaway Authority.

Mr. Peterson: What the minister is saying then is the Ontario position is that the government is opposed to any increase in the seaway tolls? Is that correct?

Hon. Mr. Snow: It’s exactly what I said.


Mr. Philip: To the Minister of Housing concerning the Home Ownership Made Difficult project at the corner of Finch and Silverstone Drive in Rexdale. Is the minister aware that, in spite of a letter to me of September 22, 1977, from John Guthrie stating that work on the sodding and the terrible state of the properties would be commenced almost immediately, HUDAC is now saying that it would rather have a cash settlement with the owners of those properties rather than see to it that the properties are fixed up? Would the minister intervene to see that these people get what they paid for and have the properties put into a reasonable state?

Hon. Mr. Bennett: I will be glad to take that as notice of a question and have it reviewed.

Mr. Philip: One final supplementary --

Mr. Speaker: He will review it.


Mrs. Campbell: Mr. Speaker, my question is to the Minister of Government Services. In view of the fact that I have had a series of questions on the order paper since March 15, and in view of the fact that the answer is that we cannot have an answer within 14 calendar days, could I ask the Minister of Government Services what is so complicated about answering the question, “Has Professor Eric Arthur prepared any reports dealing with the legislative building and, if so, do such reports contain references to areas under the control of Mr. Speaker, particularly the chamber, the grand staircase, hallways or other common areas?”

What is the complexity in answering the question, “Will the minister table such reports?”

Why does it take this minister over 14 days for such complex questions and can he not answer whether he has familiarized himself with the provisions of sections 93 and 94 of the Legislative Assembly Act? I would like to state, Mr. Speaker, that in my view this kind of an answer is a contempt of this House. Will the minister now answer?


Hon. Mr. Drea: Come on, come on,

Hon. Mr. Grossman: You’d better resign.

An hon. member: He can’t read English.

An hon. member: He’s going to love her to death.

Hon. Mr. Henderson: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. McClellan: It wasn’t a compliment, I should say.

Hon. Mr. Henderson: I would have to apologize to the hon. member. I felt I had signed an answer to this question on Tuesday morning. Now it apparently hasn’t got through the process to be here --

Mr. Lewis: Typical of the House leader.

Hon. Mr. Henderson: -- but in order to assist the hon. member, who inquires in her question, “Has Professor Eric Arthur prepared any reports dealing ... ?” in answer to that particular part, in order to clear that, there are two letters from the professor on file. One refers to a window, the other one refers to one particular picture out in the corridors.

Mr. Lewis: A picture window.

An hon. member: Don’t get them confused.

Hon. Mr. Henderson: Those are the only reports we have had from the professor --

Mr. Lewis: That’s Eric Arthur for you. He is always on the ball.

Mr. Reid: How much did that cost?

Hon. Mr. Henderson: -- so there is nothing hidden. In fact, Mr. Speaker, I attached both of these letters to the answer to the question.

What other parts of the member’s question remain?

Hon. B. Stephenson: I think that is probably enough.

Hon. Mr. Henderson: What other questions did the hon. member ask?

Mr. S. Smith: Bette says it is enough. How much did it cost to get that window put in?

Mrs. Campbell: Could I be advised how much those two letters cost us?

An hon. member: That’s a supplementary.

Hon. Mr. Henderson: The retainer fee for the professor is $1,500 a year.


Mrs. Campbell: A year?

Mr. Lewis: He does one picture window a year for $1,500. We will do it for half the price.


Mr. di Santo: I have a question of the Minister of Labour. Now that the Unemployment Insurance office has dropped the requirement for job search in order to qualify for benefits, would the minister direct the Workmen’s Compensation Board to drop the requirement for job search in order to qualify for the supplement on the basis of section 42(5) of the Act? As the minister knows it is a farce, it is stupid, and it is humiliating for the worker.

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, I would ask the hon. leader of the third party to make sure that his caucus get their act together. That absolutely identical question was posed by the hon. member’s colleague from Windsor-Riverside not five minutes ago. I did respond by saying I would take it under consideration immediately. I am sorry the hon. member was not in the House to hear either the question or the answer.


Mr. Haggerty: I would like to direct a question to the Minister of Colleges and Universities. Further to the recent announcement of the Canada Employment and Immigration Commission and the Ministry of Colleges and Universities indicating that the federal government will spend a minimum of $272 million over the next three years --

Mr. Speaker: Can we have some order in the House? I can’t even hear the question.

Mr. Haggerty: -- and will spend $102 million during the fiscal year 1978-79, can the minister assure the members that the funding of this program will be utilized to its fullest potential for job creation opportunities for Ontario’s young adults? Also, is the minister considering introducing a new apprenticeship program -- for example, on-the-job training -- to meet Ontario’s shortage of skilled tradesmen and to reduce the number of imported tradesmen and technicians?

Hon. Mr. Parrott: Yes and yes. There is no doubt that we will be making some announcements on the apprenticeship program and skill training program in the near future -- hopefully in the month of May. We feel that the additional funds this year will go a long way towards helping us in those programs. It’s about an $18 million increase of federal funds.

I think I should add, for the member’s benefit, that the federal government have always felt Ontario led the way in the utilization of these funds for the benefit of their citizens.

Mr. Cassidy: Supplementary: In view of the failure of so many companies in the province to provide apprenticeships for workmen and working women on their plant floors, is the government now prepared to insist that companies open up apprenticeships, rather than expecting that someone else will do the job?

Mr. S. Smith: Why don’t you have a talk with the unions so they’ll co-operate?

Mr. Martel: Let the unions do it -- you’re dumber than I thought you were.

Mr. Speaker: Have you answered?

Hon. Mr. Parrott: I think there is very little I can add to what I said the other day to the hon. leader of the third party. Those determinations are in the process of being made, and a full program will be announced in May.

It is rather interesting that in the last two or three months the leader seems to have found that this is a new world, and is proposing all these ideas. We’ve been working on it for well over a year and a half now, and I am surprised that he has only twigged on to it in the last two or three months.

Mr. Cassidy: You have been in office for 34 years.



Mr. Breaugh from the standing procedural affairs committee presented the committee’s report which was read as follows and adopted:

Your committee has carefully examined the following applications for private Acts and finds the notices, as published in each case, sufficient:

John A. Schmalz Agencies Limited;

Hare Transport Limited;

A. C. McIntyre Motors Limited;

Beaver Construction (Ontario) Limited;

White Queen Limited;

Salsberg’s Smoke and Gift Shop Limited;

MacLellan Construction Limited;

Loubill Hobbies and Sports Limited;

Congregation Beth Am;

Crossroads Christian Communications Incorporated;

City of Cornwall;

City of Hamilton;

Borough of Scarborough;

William Hall Peterborough Protestant Poor Trust.

Mr. Breaugh: Mr. Speaker, I wonder if I might just take this opportunity to inform the House that, particularly in the light of the Treasurer’s remarks about the work of this committee on Tuesday afternoon last, I informed the committee this morning, and the House leaders and the whips, in particular the Conservative House leader and whip, who had no members present this morning, that this committee will no longer conduct any business unless I can count five warm and appropriate bodies.


Mr. MacDonald presented a report on proposed uranium contracts from the select committee on Ontario Hydro affairs, dated March 12, 1978.

Mr. MacDonald: Copies of this report are immediately available to the press and will be distributed in the normal course to the members.



Hon. W. Newman moved first reading of Bill 48, An Act respecting Commodity Boards and Marketing Agencies.

Motion agreed to.

Hon. W. Newman: Mr. Speaker, the reason for introducing this bill is the result of a recent Supreme Court of Canada decision reversing a number of its own decisions going back to 1933. It has ruled that the federal government cannot authorize the collection of levies on products marketed within a province. Thus, we have brought forward this legislation to deal with this matter in order to clear it up.


Hon. Mr. McMurtry moved first reading of Bill 49, An Act to amend the Municipal Act.

Motion agreed to.

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: Mr. Speaker, this bill is identical to the bill that was introduced towards the end of the last session, the purpose of which is to confer power on all municipalities to pass bylaws licensing, regulating and governing adult entertainment parlours.


Hon. Mr. McMurtry moved first reading of Bill 50, An Act to amend the Landlord and Tenant Act.

Motion agreed to.

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: Mr. Speaker, this bill is complementary to the bill that I just introduced, entitled the Municipal Amendment Act.


Mr. Speaker: I understand there are about 14 private bills for introduction today. Would it be agreeable that members wishing to introduce such bills send them to the table and they will have been deemed to have been read the first time? Agreed?

Mr. Renwick: No, Mr. Speaker. On behalf of our party, I don’t think we can agree to that. It is important that the statement of intent of the bill be on the record.

Mr. Speaker: There is no statement of intent associated with a private bill.

Motion agreed to.


Mr. Lawlor moved first reading of Bill 51, An Act respecting Occupiers’ Liability.

Motion agreed to.

Mr. Lawlor: The explanatory note is that the bill replaces the common law as to an occupier’s duty and care, replacing the common-law distinctions between duties to invitees, licensees, trespassers and child trespassers with one common duty of care applied to the circumstances of each ease.

The bill is in the form recommended by the uniform law conference of Canada.


Mr. Lawlor moved first reading of Bill 52, An Act to provide for Class Actions.

Motion agreed to.

Mr. Laughren: Long overdue.

Mr. Lawlor: The purpose of this bill is to provide a statutory procedure whereby one or more persons may sue a defendant in the fom of a class action. The bill is designed to achieve this purpose by permitting a person who wishes to sue on behalf of a class to apply for a court order authorizing the class action. Once the order is obtained the action proceeds as a class action and the final judgement binds all members of the class except those who have been excluded, as well as the parties to the action.


Mr. Lawlor moved first reading of Bill 53, An Act to provide for Freedom of Information.

Motion agreed to.

Mr. Lawlor: The purpose of this bill is to provide members of the public with access to government information. The bill is designed to allow maximum accessibility to government documents while at the same time recognizing that it is in the public interest that certain types of information not be disclosed.

Where a disagreement arises as to whether or not certain information should be disclosed, the bill provides a mechanism for resolving the dispute.



Hon. Mr. Welch: Mr. Speaker, before orders of the day, may I take this opportunity to indicate the order of business for the balance of this week and next week. The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court in his capacity as administrator will be in the House shortly before 6 this afternoon to give royal assent to five bills standing on the order paper awaiting royal assent

This afternoon we take Bills 40 and 32 into discussion as private members’ public business. This evening we hope to complete Bill 30, Bill 5 and Bill 6 standing on the order paper. Any remaining time this evening will be turned over to debate on the first order. Tomorrow morning we will take into discussion the resolution standing in the name of the Minister of Consumer and Commercial Relations (Mr. Grossman), being government motion 11.

Next week on Monday afternoon, being April 3, the House will be in committee of supply to commence consideration of the estimates of the Ministry of Government Services.

On Tuesday afternoon of next week the House will debate private members’ motion No. 5 standing in the name of the member for Ottawa Centre (Mr. Cassidy). In the evening we will turn to legislation and consider these bills, hopefully in this order, Bills 7, 8, 9, 11, 31, 24, 26, and 28. If any time remains, we could go back to the first order.

On Wednesday the House does not meet in the chamber.

On Thursday afternoon two ballot items will be considered by the House, No. 7, a resolution standing in the name of Mr. McNeil, and Bill 45 standing in the name of Mr. Blundy. That evening, April 6, we will devote to the first order, the budget debate.

On Friday morning the House will meet in committee of supply to continue consideration of the estimates of the Ministry of Government Services.

It is also customary at this time to indicate the committee meetings, particularly those on Wednesday morning. It has been agreed that the standing committee on general government and the standing committee on resources development will meet next Wednesday morning and the standing committee on justice may meet if required. It is my understanding too that the standing committee on social development will meet on Monday and Tuesday afternoons to continue the consideration of the estimates of the Ministry of Culture and Recreation. On Wednesday afternoon they will commence their consideration of the report of the Ministry of Health as agreed.

The estimates of the Ministry of the Environment will continue in the standing committee on resources development which next week meets on Tuesday evening, Wednesday morning and Thursday evening, as well as this evening. If there are any questions I would be glad to respond to them. I think I have covered all the matters that are necessary for information for next week.

Mrs. Campbell: Mr. Speaker, I have a question. It’s perhaps a point of clarification. In view of the fact that the committees as spelled out have rather mandatory times for meeting, could we have from the government House leader some expression of his position as to other interventions which can preclude those committees sitting on a Thursday morning from being able to function? Is the House leader as bound, as the committees are, in calling other meetings which conflict with those committees and really completely destroy their effectiveness?

Hon. Mr. Welch: Mr. Speaker, I’m glad the hon. member has raised this question. A great deal of time was spent attempting to allocate time for the meetings of committees, and there was some care taken to hopefully avoid the very point to which the hon. member makes reference. It was regrettable this morning, I think, that the government caucus had to meet and, therefore, it took away that membership from all these particular committees, and certainly I think that should be avoided in the future.

I do accept the comments of the hon. member for Oshawa (Mr. Breaugh) on that subject as well. It was certainly agreed that Thursday morning would be set aside for the four smaller committees, and I would agree that we should attempt to make it possible for them to meet and to avoid these conflicts. I will, indeed, take that up with our whip.




Mrs. Campbell moved second reading of Bill 40, An Act to provide for the Economic Equality of the Sexes.

Mrs. Campbell: Mr. Speaker, I would ask that I might reserve five minutes of my time to conclude.

The Act in question is one which I have introduced in order to complement the family law packages which have come before us in some sense, and the philosophy of those packages, because one of the things that we have done in reaching our deliberations on this subject is to say to women generally, “We would like you to take responsibility for your own welfare,” having in mind, of course, always the particular circumstances of each case. It’s rather a proud moment for me to say that I think the women of the province of Ontario have accepted, generally speaking, that position, that they ought to take responsibility, always, of course, having the opportunity to do so and certainly having the opportunity for retraining and other matters where they have been out of the work force.

We now come to the point where there has to be some recognition of the realities of the situation. The reason I feel this is an important bill is, if I may review the activities of the government, particularly during International Women’s Year, when we were all so involved in trying to find equality for women, we dealt with the Child Welfare Act and we wanted to ensure equality. What we did, of course, was to bring in an amendment to that legislation, an amendment which perhaps was not even necessary, but in order to make it completely unambiguous that both spouses had responsibility for support and maintenance of children.

We wanted to be sure that women played their equal role, and they should. We don’t quarrel with it. But at the same time in that bill, showing the philosophy of government, we retained that section which said, of course, notwithstanding that a woman must take responsibility for support and maintenance, only the father’s religion governs the religion of the child. So we stumbled through that kind of equality in International Women’s Year.

Then, of course, we were dealing earlier with the matter of the employment standards legislation and there we also wanted to ensure that we gave equality to women. The philosophy of government was one which most of us embraced. “Ah, now at last equality of opportunity, equality in the work force.” Of course, there was a little teensy-weensy kind of amendment which meant nothing, but what we did to make women more equal was to ensure that they could no longer have the protection of a cab home at night when they worked the graveyard shift. And this was at a time of increasing sexual violence in our cities, and at a time when, perhaps, it was unfair of women to ask for something special. Perhaps the time is coming when we must ensure this kind of protection for everyone since we don’t seem to be able to curb violence in our society.

So, perhaps those in this House can understand why, having taken these forward-looking steps under the family law legislation, I felt that perhaps on this occasion we had better put a little bit of teeth into it for once.

All this bill really does, in essence, is to say: “All right government, you have conceded that women are equal. You have a human rights code.” But, you know, somehow or other, women don’t fare all that well in the human rights code. It seems very difficult to establish a prima facie case. So what we’re saying is: “All right, you as the government have shown to women your deep desire to give them equality.” Now there has been, unfairly perhaps on the women’s side, a little scepticism about what you’re getting at; but to clear up any such scepticism and quite apart from any of this positive action stuff that we’ve heard about but which doesn’t seem to go anywhere, we now say: “Look, the government does a great deal of public business. And they do business with a great many companies, so the government ought to take responsibility to ensure that when they do business with corporations, they do business with corporations that do not discriminate.”

I’m perfectly certain they’re very careful about doing business with people who don’t enter into any unfortunate labour practices; and I see no difference in this one to protect women, so that those who are going to take responsibility have a very real opportunity to do so. It gives the right to a person who feels that there is discrimination by reason of sex -- and that is all that we’re talking about in this bill -- to apply to the judge of the supreme court; and the power is there in that learned gentleman -- or, hopefully, more and more a lady -- to enjoin the government and to ensure that no moneys are paid to any such body which is discriminating, as the judge would have to find; and the money would be withheld until such time as that discrimination ceased. That, really, is all that is involved in this very simple bill.

I know the government House leader recognizes its simplicity, and its clarity, and I’m sure, Mr. Speaker, if he would be speaking for the government itself, he would certainly support this positive action to ensure economic equality of the sexes.


Ms. Bryden: Ever since the private bills were to some extent raised in importance by the addition of this Thursday session on them, we seem to be getting private members’ bills that are becoming more and more what one might call grandstanding bills. I really think this particular bill takes the prize for that because of the title. I think there’s sheer bravado in suggesting that a 1 1/4 page bill with three clauses can, and I quote the title, be An Act to provide for the Economic Equality of the Sexes.

You cannot provide such a thing without a bill that would be pages and pages long, Mr. Speaker. We have just brought in a 35 or 40-page family law reform bill which did not provide for economic equality of the sexes but only took a very tentative step in that direction. We would need a bill which would cover the provision of equal pay for work of equal value. This bill does not even touch that area since it applies only to discrimination under the human rights code --

Mrs. Campbell: The unions didn’t want it either.

Ms. Bryden: -- whereas the equal pay provisions are under the Employment Standards Act. Mr. Speaker, you would need a bill which would abolish sex stereotyping, which would eliminate the sex bias in the schools, in the media and in textbooks. You would need a bill which would open up all occupations on an equal basis to the sexes, and which would open up educational opportunities, apprenticeships and so on.

The introducer of the bill said that this is a very simple bill. I say it is a very simplistic bill, because all it offers is one single avenue for enforcing the human rights code with regard to discrimination in employment on the basis of sex. What is that one simplistic answer? It is to say to people go to court.

Thousands of women sent in briefs stating that going to court was not the answer on family law reform because they know that going to court costs money. It causes great delays. It inhibits very many people who do not think they have the money and who may have trouble getting legal aid. Going to court bypasses all the conciliation procedures that are in the present human rights code, the investigative procedures that precede the hearings. In effect it is not an effective way of enforcing this kind of legislation.

The hon. member for St. George seems to have great faith in the courts. She doesn’t seem to have observed that some judges in their own attitudes still discriminate against women and that we in the past have not received equality of economic equality through the courts.

Mrs. Campbell: Read Hansard.

Mr. Kerrio: Clear the courts.

Ms. Bryden: Therefore, I don’t think we can consider this is a bill to achieve economic equality of the sexes.

Mrs. Campbell: So you are voting against it?

Ms. Bryden: It should perhaps be renamed. It could be renamed An Act to provide a Supplementary Means of Enforcing the Human Rights Code with regard to Employment. If it was renamed in that sense and if there were a number of changes brought in in committee, then perhaps we could support it because we are all in favour of finding new methods of making the human rights code and the Employment Standards Act work. In fact, it is rather a crying shame that under the Employment Standards Act only 38 cases were brought up last year complaining about lack of equal pay and only nine cases were won and payments were made by employers. We do need some action to enforce both the Employment Standards Act and the human rights code.

In the United States, under the Equal Opportunity Commission, they do provide that any company receiving government contracts must have an affirmative action program for preventing discrimination both against women and other minority groups. That seems to me much more effective than simply cutting off their funds. If the contractor does not implement the affirmative action program, then he is cut off future contracts. That is the method of enforcement, rather than going through the courts.

There are other things which would have to be added to this bill to make it satisfactory. In the first place, I think it needs a great deal of clarification. It says that “any person, corporation, or undertaking that receives public funds would be liable to be taken to court”; and if discrimination could be proved, their funds would be cut off. It doesn’t specify whether we are talking about payments in the right of the government of Canada or the government of Ontario, or a municipal government; whether it would cover the TTC; whether it would cover anybody who receives a provincial tax credit. Anyone who receives $10 from the government in any form would perhaps be liable under this.

And it doesn’t provide for any remedy, except the cutting off of the funds. The complainant receives no compensation, no redress; except that presumably the discrimination would have to be ended before the funds could be restored. But are you going to cut off the entire grants to the city of Toronto because one person is able to prove a case of discrimination against him? It seems to me that it is completely unworkable in its present state.

I think it would be much more sensible to follow the US practice and make it apply, at the beginning anyway, to government contracts over a certain amount -- in the US $10,000 is the lower limit, and to make the procedures under the human rights code the first step, that is investigation and conciliation. I think it would be important to extend it to the Employment Standards Act; but first of all to amend the Employment Standards Act so that the equal pay clause reads as it does in the federal human rights Act: “Equal pay for work of equal value.”

Mrs. Campbell: You would have to get the Steelworkers behind you on that one.

Ms. Bryden: I think it should include a provision for class actions, which are not allowed at present.

These are the sorts of amendments that I would hope to see put in at any committee stage on this bill before I could vote for it on third reading. I think we have before us a bill which does not do what the title proposes, but is simply a rather ineffective method of improving the enforcement of the human rights code, and leaves a great deal to be desired.

Mr. Jones: I listened with interest to the mover of the bill, the member for St. George and I respect her philosophy which she described as being her motivations for presenting the bill.

On comparing the provisions of the hon. member’s bill with the Ontario Human Rights Code, it is, however, clear to me that the code now prohibits discrimination against women, among other groups, by all employers within Ontario’s jurisdiction; and this of course includes the Crown. The code has very broad application and covers all employers, those who receive public funds and those who do not.

I had occasion personally to be involved in a case recently in my area of Peel where it involved a woman -- the member may be familiar with it, it was a large auto manufacturer -- and this woman did feel she had suffered an act of discrimination. It was dealt with by the human rights commission, and I must say they were very prompt. They responded to me the same day and made an immediate investigation with a positive result in favour of the woman.

I do have some problems with a couple of the sections. I notice that the member has retained some minutes of her time, maybe she will be answering them for me. I notice that this bill doesn’t define public funds. I have no basis to determine whether or not sex discrimination is more widespread among employers who receive public funds, or with employers who do not receive such funds.

Also, the bill seems to propose differential enforcement for publicly-funded employers. Therefore, I question whether its provisions would not place these employers in an unfair or irresponsible sort of circumstances.

So it would seem that the bill is hinting at some form of contract compliance. If I’m correct in that, it should be well known by now that the Ontario Human Rights Commission has recommended a contract compliance provision in its report on human rights in Ontario. The Ministry of Labour is now studying this set of recommendations with a view to determining whether the human right code or the Employment Standards Act is the more appropriate statute with which to address the problem of discrimination by employers on contract with the government.

I noticed the member for Beaches-Woodbine’s comment of the need for more of a package approach and I think she’ll find it’s contained in the so-called Life Together report.

Ms. Gigantes: It’s right there on paper, right?

Mr. Jones: We all recognize that an important objective of the government is to encourage the responsible employer in business practices. At the same time, though, placing unnecessary barriers in the path of initiatives and enterprise in today’s business and employment climate is of no small concern to me.

Mr. Laughren: That’s really the heart of it, isn’t it? That’s really where you’re at.

Mr. Jones: I work with some of the government’s programs that take some involvement and some interface with the private sector --

Mr. Laughren: You know better.

Mr. Conway: Are you sure it’s not an impact?

Mr. Jones: -- and it’s very clear in the comments that we are receiving from those private sector employers that they are, in the case I’m most familiar with, making employment opportunities for the young people -- in our OYE program, for example -- and, of course, they’re anxious to see as few fetters as possible that might affect them. Our concern stems from the fact that we don’t want to have any perceived barriers to these employers, be it for males or females. We all know the need and we’re all concerned and anxious to get on and see some of those programs, like the one that worked very successfully last year -- it’s back this year --

Ms. Gigantes: We get the jobs if we get paid less, eh?

Mr. Jones: -- it is rather important for them to be carried on.

Mr. Laughren: The employee is now a fetter, is he?

Mr. Jones: We’re an employer too, as you know, and we are just coming on the threshold of our summer employment problems facing young people. Working with that, I have some sense of their feelings. I know we’ve been very careful in the Youth Secretariat -- and we take that lead from the other portions of the government -- to make certain there isn’t discrimination in the sex side of the decision in jobs, the programming and the design of them. We’ve taken great care and I can tell you the Experience program runs something on the order of 60 per cent by design and about two-thirds actual participation by girls in all of the 13,000 jobs this year and some 78 different components. In our advertising of different programs we take great care to balance the female and the male presentations and, of course, we listen carefully to what the young people have to say about the sex in applications as they look at employment, in summer programs or in some of the others such as OCAP that the members are familiar with.

I’m concerned that this bill concerns only the ground, as was mentioned by the previous speaker, of the applicant’s sex. Of course, it is obvious that the economic and the social and the personal consequences of employment discrimination are equally severe for all of its victims, including the young and the old and the handicapped and the racial and ethnic minorities, among the others. I fear then that unfortunate social consequences would ensue if any anti-discrimination legislation were to cover or favour only one of the several disadvantaged groups in our society.

Mr. Laughren: You’re not real. I don’t believe you.

Mr. Jones: Then just wait for a moment. We had a motion here, and I heard speakers from the member’s party speaking about it, when we talked about a rather controversial issue called alcohol. We talked about just the age side of it. There were speakers from all parties, as I recall rather distinctly, saying over and over again that to single out but one of the proposals that one of our select committees said would help was not going to solve the whole of it, but rather that it was for the government to come back with an overall bill addressing itself as a package of remedies to those overall problems. And this has some parallels, I would suggest.


Ms. Gigantes: Then why aren’t you doing that?

Mr. Laughren: It is not a good analogy.

Mr. Jones: It is unclear to me. In section 3 of this bill, concerning the channel of the grievances available to the person who alleges the discrimination, it appears to propose that the grievor can bypass these long-established agencies and file a grievance in that court action without the benefit of that investigation.

Obviously this provision would pre-empt some of the powers of the Ontario Human Rights Commission which, as I just recited using a personal example, I found functioned very quickly and very efficiently. I worry that the code could suffer a loss of its efficiency if that were the case. Also, if I understand correctly, the remedies available under the court action are seldom as quickly available. I will look to someone more learned in that area, such as the hon. member, but my understanding is that they are also costly, as was mentioned a moment ago; and is it possible that all of a sudden, because of financial considerations, we could be removing the possibility from some people who might have limited means and otherwise might have to look for the cost or be prevented from going to court and your speaker mentioned this very same point.

Ms. Gigantes: They could always go to the human rights code.

Mr. Jones: But, more important, we have striven in this province over the years to maintain a delicate balance between the effective administration of the code and the promotion of good and dynamic human relations in our drive for equality of opportunity for all our citizens. I feel the essence of this would be lost by resorting to punitive measures.

I know that in the cases I am familiar with the threat of punitive measures was not the measure of effectiveness that brought about the response that got the results that clearly were indicated as being needed in those cases.

The record shows that the effectiveness of the Ontario Human Rights Commission in resolving complaints of discrimination because of sex, as well as on other grounds, has been well established; and I looked up the breakdowns of the different ones. I won’t pretend for a moment there isn’t a lot of area to go; that is why I propose that the approach of the package under Life Together, report, which I am anxious to see come forward, will be the route we will be going. I would have to say that I won’t be able to support the bill in that singular fashion.

Mr. Stong: Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of this bill with the full realization of what happens to private members’ bills after they have been introduced and debated in this House -- ordinarily, they are shelved -- but I recognize in this bill a very valid principle. There are weaknesses, as has been pointed out, and there are two that I am very concerned about myself in this bill. However, the principle is one of recognition, and effectual recognition, of the equality of the sexes in the marketplace.

We have the Ontario Human Rights Code, we have the Ontario Human Rights Commission, and we have just passed the Family Law Reform Act, which at least pays lip-service to the fact that there is equality between the sexes.

I do not enjoy the same optimism about the record of the Ontario Human Rights Commission as the previous speaker has enjoyed. It seems to me that, although that body exists, it has been ineffectual by and large, in the sense that it is not able to accomplish particularly what is sought after; but it has not been resorted to, in a sufficient number of circumstances.

This bill, as I see it, is a people-oriented bill. It is a bill in which, in this age of enlightenment, as we call our age, we finally recognize that teeth must be given to what we have passed in the Family Law Reform Act.

We all are aware that in the marketplace, by and large, women have been held down. There has been no recognition of equal opportunity of enjoyment of work as well as compensation in the marketplace as between men and women. Finally, the principle of this bill simply is this, a recognition in the marketplace that when a woman is employed she ought not to be depressed by virtue of her sex. Likewise, a man ought not to be depressed by virtue of his sex. It works both ways.

The real problem naturally, and we are all aware of it, is the fact that women are more vulnerable in this area than men have been in the past and still are. We recognize that. Much has been said about the fact that there is no definition of the public funds. Basically anyone -- any individual, corporation or association that draws from the public trough -- is subject to this bill. I, in my respectful submission, Mr. Speaker, find one weakness in this bill. I would like to have seen it enlarged to encompass all companies, not only those who feed at the public trough but any company in which there is discrimination.

Ms. Gigantes: How do you cut off public funds?

Mr. Stong: I believe that we could perhaps enlarge this bill, but the principle is here and recognition of that principle is in this bill and I have no hesitation in supporting it on that basis. I always suspect, as well, any argument that is based on mistrust of our courts and the administration of justice and the judicial system as it exists in Ontario.

Ms. Gigantes: Heaven forbid.

Ms. Bryden: They haven’t given women equality.

Mr. Stong: I have the greatest of faith in our judicial system. It is the bastion of our freedom, of our liberty and the protection of our individual rights. If any members in the House had read the paper last week, Her Honour Janet Boland in our own county court has given teeth to and has recognized the principle that we have passed in this House and which has not even come into law, and she has already begun to enforce it.

Ms. Gigantes: It takes a woman to do it.

Mr. Warner: It took a woman to do it and it wasn’t 50-50.

Mr. Stong: I agree it is time, but the fact of the matter is our judges are beginning to recognize exactly those principles and issues about which we have spoken.

Ms. Gigantes: Women have no difficulty with that.

Mr. Stong: The fact of the matter is that the issues and the principles that we have discussed and which have now been encompassed in our law are there to guide the judges.

There is one other weakness that I would like to address myself to in this bill and that is the onus that is created by this bill. It has been addressed by a previous speaker. That is, it places the onus on the worker to make the application before the court. I would prefer to see a mechanism whereby an individual could make a complaint and the onus be cast on the human rights commission to bring the matter before the courts.

I believe it ought to come before the courts, because that is where our greatest recognition of power is and authority in our state. I have faith in the court. The onus I have a problem with, but the principle of the bill is there. It is complementary, as the member for St. George has indicated, to the Family Law Reform Act which we have passed and in that sense it gives that bill teeth, much-needed teeth, and I have no hesitation in supporting the concept in this bill.

Mr. Laughren: We in this party are going to support the bill of the member for St. George, although I really have serious questions about why she has so limited its scope. If we are going to bring in a private member’s bill, particularly when it comes to a vote, I question why it does not have more substance. As I understand the bill, it empowers a judge, if an application is made by an individual, to stop payment of public funds to an organization or an individual and then that payment can be reinstated if the judge is satisfied that discrimination no longer is going on.

What I don’t understand is whether it really does apply to all public institutions and what that means in terms of municipalities, school boards and ministries of the government itself, for example. I don’t know why she hasn’t simply amended the human rights code. Perhaps when she responds at the end of the debate she will tell us that. Why don’t we have a bill, preferably a government bill, which legislates equal pay for work of equal value? That’s really the only thing that will solve the problem.

Given the considerable heat generated and the light shed over the issue of sexual discrimination against women, it’s both depressing and debilitating to accept the fact that the economic lot of women simply has not changed in recent years. Despite impassioned pleas, dramatic demonstrations and numerous confrontations, virtually nothing has changed. As a matter of fact, I can detect a backlash out there in society against issues such as the women’s movement.

Those who can or could do the most are doing the least. We have a Minister of Labour in the province of Ontario who could be doing a great deal to remove some of the discriminations that now exist out there. The Minister of Labour has jurisdiction over the human rights code, over the Employment Standards Act, and over the affirmative action programs in the government. The Minister of Labour could take all sorts of new initiatives that don’t involve amending any kind of existing legislation either. The Minister of Labour does simply nothing. She must be a very bitter disappointment to the women of the province of Ontario.

We have certain established programs in the province of Ontario, but we have them in other provinces and other jurisdictions, as well, affirmative action, the human rights code, the women’s bureau and the Employment Standards Act but, even so, nothing changes.

One need look no further than the Ontario public service. There’s no better example of discrimination at work than the public service in the province of Ontario. The latest figures I have -- there may be more up to date figures now -- show that 38 per cent of the employees in the Ontario public service are female. Out of those, 40 per cent of them earn less than $9,000, whereas only five per cent of men employed in the public service earn less than $9,000.

At the other end of the income scale, we have less than six per cent of women earning in excess of $15,000 and 35 per cent of men earning in excess of $15,000.

Mr. Jones: How would that compare to five years ago?

Ms. Gigantes: It hasn’t changed a bit.

Mr. Laughren: It simply has not changed.

Mr. Martel: You won’t table the report.

Mr. Laughren: The same can be shown in the educational system as well and in the private sector too. It’s not restricted strictly to the Ontario public service, that’s not the point I’m trying to make. I’m just saying that there’s no leadership at all being provided by this government in terms of removing discrimination in the work place.

I think this bill is well-intentioned. I have no question about that. Its weaknesses have already been outlined by other members. The one that bothers me the most is the onus on the individual to initiate action. I think that’s an irreparable weakness in the bill. It simply won’t happen. I was doing a little bit of research on it and they tell me that in New York City, for example, they have an affirmative action program there with a director. The onus is not on the individual, because you and I both know that that’s simply not going to happen. As a lay person myself, the thought of getting a court order from an Ontario Supreme Court judge is so intimidating that I wouldn’t do it, and I’m sure that 99.9 per cent of people out there simply won’t get involved in that kind of process. And it’s really too bad.

Also, there’s no penalty in the bill for doing anything about people who break the law. We have penalties for people who speed, penalties for people who drink too much and penalties for people who smoke in the wrong places, but we have no penalties for people who discriminate against their fellow human beings. It’s downright silly.

Mr. Jones: Except to withdraw their funds.

Mr. Laughren: Surely it’s time that we faced the problem squarely. Put simply, discrimination against women exists in the work place. It exists not just in wages paid but by the lack of daycare facilities for women who are in the work place and by failure to promote women in the work place, in the public sector as well as the private sector. The education system with its stereotyped counselling discriminates against women as they head out into the work world.

We know the existing legislation the member from the government side talked about is misleading as well, because equal pay for equal work is meaningless when the government can classify jobs the way it’s done now. That simply makes no sense at all. Until the government moves into the whole concept of equal pay for work of equal value, there is going to be discrimination. Look at the number of complaints and the success rate. It’s pathetic. The government really has no program that works. in conclusion, I understand the problem as being the kind of economic system we have. It’s predatory in nature, put simply. We have an economic system that requires a pool of low-paid labour in order to provide the return required on capital. We have an economic system that refuses to accept collective responsibility for the children in this society. And we have an economic system that has chosen women to perpetuate its inequities. In the process, our economic system demeans all of us because until women have achieved economic equality with men, none of us will be free.

We reluctantly support this bill though it doesn’t go far enough.


Mr. G. Taylor: I rise to speak on Bill 40 introduced by the member for St. George. As always, she has a bill here which has given concern to this side of the House and the government, and which has received great support from the opposite side of the House. The member for St. George is shortly going to be labelled a sexist if she continues bringing forth so many bills concerning sex- orientation or otherwise. But I’m sure they’re all well-intentioned.

Mr. Sargent: Don’t knock it, George, don’t knock it.

Mr. G. Taylor: I’m waiting for one on sex and violence so that we can get a good one going here.

Mr. Conway: Have you not talked to Roy McMurtry lately?

Mrs. Campbell: I am going to bring in battered wives in the next round.

Mr. G. Taylor: But the member for St. George has had this cause going for some time. I admire her tenacity in spite of the setback she has had -- and throughout her life, as well, in the severity of the soul-searing things that she has had done to her; we’ve all heard about it in discussion on the family law legislation.

The bill in itself has some complications that have been raised already. There are those who may say that it doesn’t go far enough; there are others who on behalf of the sexists and in particular the female sex may denounce the record of this government. However, I would not support all of those contentions, and I think the Ontario government has a good record in this area.

I noticed in the Toronto Star on March 21, 1978, “Equal Pay Sleuths Retrieve $3 million For 6,790 Women.”

Ms. Bryden: But how long it took! Several years.

Mr. Laughren: Is that ever impressive, George.

Mr. G. Taylor: That is very good, and we’ve had legislation since 1968 in this field; there was the Employment Standards Act and then there was the Ontario Human Rights Code which embellishes that Act. We have had some excellent legislation in this area and people have been working to enforce it and support it.

When we look at the bill itself, it states that the person aggrieved will go to a court to apply for a remedy. In some of those areas the courts are an excellent program, but when you go to the Supreme Court of Ontario -- the court suggested in this bill under section 3 -- as we who practice law all know, it is a cumbersome, expensive, slow route to go. It may not give the remedy the person is seeking. It may require the expenditure of large sums of money to hire lawyers; and usually in this situation, it would probably mean an application in the Supreme Court in Toronto where you have help that is even higher-priced than it is with country solicitors. It may also mean that people out in the rest of the province of Ontario do not get the same remedies, and again you may be enforcing the litigious bar of Metropolitan Toronto to greater heights in not allowing the person a remedy in the northern or eastern parts of the province where we have the assize system, where judges come into parts of the territory only at certain times of the year. So you may be denying certain people in this province the remedy given to those who have a regular sitting of the Supreme Court of Ontario in Metropolitan Toronto.

There is also the problem of the sophistication of an individual going to see a lawyer. Somebody being aggrieved says right away: “Oh, my God, I’ve got to go see a lawyer but that costs money. I won’t go for my grievance.” They can go to the human rights commission. It’s an administrative situation. It is provided for by funds of the province of Ontario. They have expertise in dealing with people who are aggrieved in this situation, be they male or female; so there is somewhere they can now go -- a body which looks after this situation where discrimination might arise. Also, compare it to the court system; we already have a very, very busy court schedule, an overloaded and overburdened court system, and this will further overburden that system.

The difficulty, too, is what type of remedy are you providing in this section of section 3 compared to that which isn’t there now? The human rights situation can now offer settlement. It can offer punitive situations; whereas, the punitive situation of this one is to hold up all public funds to a particular operation. That could cause enormous problems, if it is a hospital, a university, or involves welfare recipients. Any areas that are receiving public funds may have those funds stopped should they be enjoined, should there be some case of discrimination, should there be an interim injunction granted. Then the whole system may be held up, so you are penalizing more than just the individual, more than just that person involved in the discrimination. You are penalizing maybe an entire financial operation in a community because somebody has discriminated. Trying to unsort the problem, going back to a court to relieve that order, may take some difficulty and time and you may cause even greater harm than is presently caused by the discrimination.

Mr. Warner: So you are going to guillotine this one too, are you?

Mr. G. Taylor: Without going too far, and I am sure other members have said this, there is the redundancy possibility of the present legislation. The principle is good but have we not got the same relief presently under the human rights legislation in this province? Is this not already looked after? As one member has said about the Minister of Labour, I think she has done an excellent job in the area of providing leadership in legislation for all sexes -- not just the sex that the member for St. George has alluded to, being the female sex. This just says “sex” but it is for both sexes. I think our Minister of Labour has provided that leadership.

Ms. Gigantes: What have you done?

Mr. G. Taylor: When we look at section 3, someone aggrieved by discrimination going to a judge of a supreme court, I go back to the member for St. George’s plea in this House when she would have us going back, as the remedy, to the Supreme Court of Ontario. Even as late as March 16, she says -- and this is from Hansard: “but it was the attitude of this judge in adjourning the matter, which is a part of the general approach of the courts to this situation.”

And then on a little further: “They made their presentation and they didn’t blush or feel any sense of shame that women had been driven to take this kind of position through fear because of their long-standing experience in the courts.”

And then in another place on March 9 in the same debate on the family law legislation: “As I say, the one place on which I am in absolute agreement with those who have spoken on behalf of the third party is a very real suspicion of women about the way in which the administration of justice functions. They have a right to that suspicion.”

And then later on on March 16 in the same discussion of the bill: “I don’t know what the discussion was in the committee. In my view, as long as people have no confidence in the law -- and it isn’t just the judges -- this is the problem. Women have no confidence in the legal profession basically in these cases before the court.”

And then continuing: “Simply because the members of the bar don’t take that particular situation seriously, and some of them grow up to be judges. That’s the problem.”

So here again, after making those statements in this House, the member for St. George puts those people back into the same situation by sending them before supreme court judges. So I would think that that section at least needs some amendment from the member for St. George. I am sure she might -- if this goes to committee -- put before us an amendment, maybe in other form, that would give both females and males the remedy by a much quicker and cheaper method than putting them into the Supreme Court of Ontario.

Mr. Conway: I too rise in support of the principle of my colleague from St. George’s private member’s bill. I do so for those reasons which she and my colleague from York Centre pointed out in their earlier remarks. Notwithstanding that which has been said by those who find it difficult to support the bill in principle, there must be a clear and immediate recognition that effective equality of the sexes in the marketplace is certainly a first order of priority. This is particularly so when we consider the new obligations and the new climate created as a result of Bill 59 passed in this Legislature but a few days ago.

I want to not only support the principle of the bill but I want to support the mover of this bill, my colleague from St. George. She has proven yet again her sincere and ongoing interest for the civil liberties of people in this province in the face of ongoing and serious discrimination which, while we all recognize it we lament nonetheless.

My colleague from St. George has proved herself to be a truly heroic crusader in this respect and has at times, perhaps much more willingly than some of the rest of us, carried that crusade through in areas and in ways which, in the short-term at any rate, have probably not been in her political self-interest.

Mr. Martel: Some of your colleagues have been the hardest on her.

Mr. Conway: For that dedication, for that commitment and for that unique personal contribution to the politics and to the life of Ontario I stand in support this afternoon. I am going to digress just for a moment to say --

Mr. Martel: You wouldn’t.

Mr. Conway: -- I don’t like to -- that I sat here throughout much of the debate on Bill 59 as an onlooker, not having the immediate interest that some others had.

Mr. Warner: You are digressing.

Mr. Conway: I must say as a male, when I listened to the contributions of certain members, when I read later on --

Mr. Warner: Name names.

Mr. Laughren: Name one.

Mr. Conway: -- the articles of certain prominent individuals contributing to the Toronto Sun, I can’t imagine a more important bill for my self-interest than this particular bill. Because as a male, I have to think that appearing before Laura Sabia, if she happened to be chairman of a board that was in the hiring procedure, my interest could just be discriminated against.

Ms. Gigantes: We would make her a judge.

Mr. Conway: And if the vice-chairman of that corporation were the member for Carleton East, I would shudder all the more and demand the protection put forward in Bill 40.

Ms. Gigantes: So you might.

Mr. Conway: I want to say I think that there are certain of the male sex who might very well find this bill in their self-interest.

I listened to the members for Beaches-Woodbine (Ms. Bryden) and Mississauga North (Mr. Jones) or South or East or whatever. They said that among their objections to this bill was the fact that it wasn’t broad enough and that it singled out government. Certainly that is a point well made and well taken. It is clear, as the member for Nickel Belt (Mr. Laughren) pointed out in his remarks, that the record of government in this province, while it has been improving, is still a long way from what we would consider acceptable.

I heard other members, notably the member for Simcoe Centre, say that it would very possibly be a redundancy. After all, we have the Ontario Human Rights Code and we have the Ontario Human Rights Commission. Happily, with the arrival now of the Minister of Community and Social Services, I have to enjoin the member for Simcoe Centre and ask him what have we got in the human rights commission? Just what has this government turned the Ontario Human Rights Commission into, given certain recent appointments?

Hon. Mr. Norton: The finest in the land.

Mr. Conway: I can understand why the Minister of Community and Social Services sighs easily these days. But those difficulties, now transferred to the Ontario Human Rights Commission, I think, will render this kind of legislation all the more important.

Hon. Mr. Norton: Are you knocking equal opportunity for women?

Mr. Conway: Where is the promised debate in this Legislature or a committee thereof on the report of the human rights commission and on the code itself? The government of which the hon. member for Simcoe Centre is perhaps an unhappy part has been very careful to keep and to restrict the very important discussion of that bill from this chamber. I think he had better talk to some of his superiors in cabinet if he really believes what he said earlier about the requirements of the debate in that particular case.

Mr. Warner: They are a dismal lot over there.

Mr. Conway: I too share the concern of certain members that this bill, while nearly perfect, is not exactly so. I am concerned about the fact that it does involve a requirement for the individual to go to a lawyer. God forbid that for any man or any woman in this society in this day and age.


Mr. Martel: We should outlaw lawyers.

Mr. Conway: Certainly I find it an intimidating proposition that one would have to go to the supreme court at any level. Unlike certain members of my own caucus, I do share a concern of other members that the courts and the history of the judicial process in this country have not been fair and equitable in the treatment of the sexes. I do understand something of the discriminatory history there, but I must say that I am equally of the feeling that this bill, however imperfect, is a necessary, worthwhile and timely step in the right direction. For that reason, together with the reasons of the ongoing Liberal crusade of my colleague from St. George in these areas of civil rights, I am happy to stand here today and support this particular bill.

Mr. Martel: Was that John Sweeney speaking, Margaret?

Ms. Gigantes: In view of the very short time that is left for debate on this bill, I’ll try to make my remarks pointed. I was reminded last night, as I sat down and looked over this bill and looked over some of the research available to us, about wage discrimination and employment discrimination against the women of this province. I fell into a mood, I suppose, that comes in some ways from the length and the kind of debate that we had over the family law bill. There comes a point when you’ve discussed this subject long enough -- the subject of the rights and need that the women of this province have for equal opportunity and equal access to financial independence -- there comes a point when you start to get a little hysterical, and as my thoughts drifted I went back in my mind to those lovely sections from “Alice in Wonderland,” and I brought the book with me today thinking that perhaps part of what was being said here today on this bill would remind me of particular sections and, indeed, that turns out to be the case.

If I were to summarize the bill and some of the things that have been said about it by the members of the Liberal caucus I would turn to that section of Alice which is headed “A Caucus Race and a Long Talk.” In this section the mouse and Alice are talking and the mouse tells a tale.

Mr. Bradley: Alice in Wonderland -- the NDP platform.

Ms. Gigantes: The tale goes this way:

“Fury said to a mouse that he met in the house, ‘Let us both go to law: I will prosecute you. Come, I’ll take no denial; We must have the trial: For really this morning I’ve nothing to do.’

“Said the mouse to the cur, ‘Such a trial, dear sir, with no jury or judge, would be wasting our breath.’

“‘I’ll be judge, I’ll be jury,’ said cunning old Fury: ‘I’ll try the whole cause and condemn you to death.’”

Hon. Mr. Norton: That’s very much to the point.

Ms. Gigantes: It seems to me that in some ways the bill, in spite of the fact that it promises to provide for the economic equality of the sexes, is so limited in its scope of action to do that, nevertheless uses a blunderbuss to try to accomplish it.

This bill, it seems to me, were it to come into effect as it is -- hopefully we will be able to amend it -- would delight nobody but the Treasurer of this province, because he’d be let off the hook so often, were it at all useful, from paying public moneys to the employers of this province --

Mr. Laughren: He could balance the budget.

Ms. Gigantes: -- that he could balance his budget. Indeed, he might. I think that we might see a lot of action for the Treasurer if this bill were passed as we formally now have it, but I don’t think we’d see much action for the women who are looking for economic equality in this province.

If I turn just to my feelings about the quality of the debate as we’ve heard it from the Conservative side of this House, I find it almost incredible to realize that there are people in that Conservative caucus who actually believe that things written on paper solve the problem. The member for Mississauga North says to us of the Human Rights Commission report, “Here it is, all on paper. That should satisfy you.” It doesn’t satisfy us.

Mr. Jones: I also said the minister was bringing it forward.

Ms. Gigantes: When I speak of women in this province we are speaking of a group that earns wages two-thirds that of men, and very often for doing jobs of a totally comparable nature. We know that the kind of attitude that has come both from the Minister of Labour and from such groups as the Chamber of Commerce in this province is that we really can’t afford equality.

I put it to my friend that if we can’t afford equality, we have got more serious problems than we normally admit. And I think it is very telling that he seems to think the problem is a very small one which can be solved by individual cases being brought, through individual members of the Tory caucus, to the human rights commission.

Mr. Jones: Pretty important to the individual who is involved, I tell you.

Ms. Gigantes: It is going to take a month of Sundays and a month of centuries to solve the problem that way.

I am reminded of another section in “Through The Looking-Glass.” It is the section where Alice is in tow by the Red Queen. They are racing -- Alice doesn’t know quite where. The Queen is urging her on, dragging her forward; finally, she allows her a breather.

“The Queen propped her against a tree, and said kindly, ‘You may rest a little now.’

“Alice looked round in great surprise. ‘Why, I do believe we’ve been under this tree the whole time! Everything’s just as it was!’

“‘Of course it is,’ said the Queen: ‘what would you have it?’

“‘Well, in our country,’ said Alice, still panting a little, ‘you’d generally get to somewhere else -- if you ran very fast for a long time, as we’ve been doing.’

“‘A slow sort of country!’ said the Queen. ‘Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place.’”

I suggest that what we are hearing from the government side of the House on this bill is all the talking they can do to keep in the same place.

We will support this bill. The bill is subject to amendment; I think, positively amended, it can be useful in taking us another small step forward in the long journey towards the equality of women in the province of Ontario.

Mrs. Campbell: Mr. Speaker, I am most grateful and appreciative to those who have spoken on this bill; and, of course, I would be delighted to have it go to committee, where it could be carefully considered.

I recognize some of the problems that have been raised, but one of the things that disturbs me, and it is particularly true of both of the speakers from the government side, is their reference to the human rights report, the code and so forth.

We are dealing in this bill with the government of Ontario. It is specified that we are speaking of the Treasurer of Ontario. I have to look at the realities of human rights today. First of all, the report to which reference has been made has never been brought to a committee of this House for study as requested.

Secondly, I wonder if we recognize the perception of people on the recent appointment to the Human Rights Commission of someone who was so long a member of the civil service of this province that her pronouncements now are basically the pronouncements that have been made by the government of this province with reference to civil rights.

Mr. Jones: I don’t think that is fair. That is not fair.

Mrs. Campbell: This is what is of concern to me and why I did not feel I could proceed to bring this forward under the Human Rights Code.

The other flaw in the code is that since this would be a power to enjoin the province of Ontario, the Treasurer, you have to realize that under the code can you see with this kind of a setup in the Ontario Human Rights Code, the fact that even under the recommendations in the report it is still open to a minister at this point to recommend whether or not there shall be a hearing. Can you see what would happen with this kind of a setup with the government involved under the Human Rights Code? If we can move, obviously the Human Rights Code would be the proper place to do it; but I have this kind of concern.

I don’t think it is an Alice-in-Wonderland kind of concern; and I am sorry that women particularly seem to want to ridicule other women in what they are attempting to do.

Ms. Gigantes: Not by choice.

Mrs. Campbell: It would be more appropriate if they stood together --

Mr. Makarchuk: Men do it to each other all the time; don’t get annoyed about it.

Mrs. Campbell: -- for what we want in this place.

Mr. Stong: Divide and conquer.


Mrs. Campbell: I do not ridicule others; I certainly have not in the one case I am speaking about -- a person who was a civil servant for years who has made pronouncements which are directly in line with what has been said by spokesmen of government. I don’t know how we can hope to have any real kind of confidence in that kind of an appointment. It is not because that person is a woman. I want to make that clear.

Hon. Mr. Norton: Perceptions differ.

Mrs. Campbell: I agree that the matter of equal pay for work of equal value should be incorporated. I have fought for that.

I was present at the committee when both the Minister of Labour of the day, no longer the minister and no longer a member, was fighting against that kind of an amendment. I was there when I was trying to fight for it. And I have to go back and say it’s too bad that we don’t have transcripts, because it was spokesmen for the big unions who really went after the women who were there for daring to ask for equal pay for work of equal value.

I hope we can get that through but in the meantime, at least the government can be enjoined. If there is another method by which this can be effected, I will be most happy to see this amended in committee and I will seek the support of all of the members of this House to accomplish that purpose.


Mr. Warner moved second reading of Bill 32, An Act to amend the Health Insurance Act, 1972.

Mr. Warner: “No taxation without legislation” is a basic democratic principle, dating back to the Magna Carta of 1215.

Hon. Mr. Norton: I thought it was taxation without representation.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: Are we back in the Magna Carta again?

Mr. Warner: The principle of taxing only by way of legislation has been sustained through British and Canadian history until now.

The Magna Carta of 1215 enunciates the principle that the payers shall be called to the common council to vote the aids which had been previously negotiated separately. The famous charter states quite clearly “No scutage or aid shall be imposed in our kingdom except by common counsel.”

Hon. Mr. Baetz: Are we back in school?

Mr. Warner: The confirmation of the charters in 1297 from the hand of King Edward, “that on no account will we henceforth take from our kingdom such aids, taxes and prises, except by the common assent of the whole kingdom.”

In 1628: The Petition of Rights. A message was delivered to Charles I on the issue of forced loans to the king without legislation. “They (the King’s subjects) should not be compelled to contribute to any tax, tallage, aid or other like charge, not set by common consent in Parliament.”

Hon. Mr. Norton: Sounds as if the hon. member for Riverdale (Mr. Renwick) wrote this.

Mr. Warner: In 1641: The Act abolishing Ship Money. The collection of ship money was declared illegal. Other Acts of Parliament abolished all other non-parliamentary procedures that Charles I had used to raise taxes. “the said charge ... commonly called ship money ... (is) contrary to and against the laws and statutes of this realm, the right of property, the liberty of the subjects, former resolutions in Parliament and the Petition of Rights.”

Instructions to Governor Murray of the province of Quebec in 1763: The instructions from King James of England set out the raising of money by Acts of assembly. “That in all laws or ordinances for levying money or imposing fines, forfeitures or penalties, express mention be made ... for the public uses of the said province ... as by the said law shall be directed; and that a clause be inserted, declaring, that the money ... shall be accounted for unto us into this kingdom.”

The Colonial Tax Repeal Act of 1778 set out that no tax could be imposed by England on its colonies in North America but instead left the responsibility with the colonial assemblies. It said: “The same duty, tax or assessment shall be respectively levied, in such manner as other duties collected by the authority of the respective general courts or general assemblies of such colonies provinces or plantations.”

In 1791, in the Constitutional Act the power of taxation and the responsibility of our two provinces, then called Upper and Lower Canada, to set taxation by way of legislation was set out in the document. “The net produce of all duties which shall be so imposed shall at all times hereafter be applied to and for the use of each of the said provinces respectively, end in such manner only as shall be directed by any law or laws that shall be made ... by and with the advice and consent of the legislative council and assembly of such province.”

The Resolutions of the Assembly of Lower Canada, 1826, state: “That the statute of the 18th George III, chapter 12, has not conferred any new rights upon the inhabitants of the British colonies, but it is a declaratory Act, the enactments whereof recognize and consecrate the constitutional maxim, that the colonies having a representation have an inalienable right not to be taxed without the consent of their representatives.

The Union Act of 1840 was designed to reunite the province of Upper and Lower Canada and for the government of Canada. Part of the Act dealt with colonial taxation and supported the principles of the above resolutions of 1826. In our British North America Act of 1867, section 54 applies to Canada and states: “It shall not be lawful for the House of Commons to adopt or pass any vote, resolution, address, or any tax or impost to any purpose that has not been first recommended to that House by message of the Governor-General in the session in which such vote, resolution, address or bill is proposed.” Section 90 applies the above responsibility to each provincial Legislature.

The principle of taxation without legislation is written about at great length. Sir Ivor Jennings in his book, “The Law and the Constitution,” states that from the time of James I and Charles I it became established that “The king has no power to levy taxation upon his English subjects, except in Parliament.” Mr. A. V. Dicey in “The Law of the Constitution” says: “All taxes are imposed by statute, and no one can be forced to pay a single shilling by way of taxation which cannot be shown to the satisfaction of the judges to be due from him under Act of Parliament.”

Hon. Mr. Baetz: Are you writing a new history book? Warner’s History of England.

Mr. Warner: A. H. Birch in his essay on the British constitution titled, “Representative and Responsible Government,” clearly informs us “The House of Commons owes its origins to the king’s need to secure the consent of the Commons to financial exactions.”

From Erskine May’s Treatise on “The Law, Privileges, Proceedings and Usage of Parliament” we gain a statement on the financial relations between the Crown and Parliament. “The Crown ... makes known to the Commons the pecuniary necessities of the government; the Commons, in return, grant such aids or supplies as are required to satisfy these demands; and they provide by taxes ... the ways and means to meet the supplies which they have granted. Thus the Crown demands money, the Commons grant it and the Lords assent to the grant.”

Taxation only by way of legislation is a principle which is easily traceable from 1215 in Great Britain to 1978 in Ontario. The BNA Act embodied the basic constitutional principles of the United Kingdom. Sir Lyman Duff, Chief Justice of Canada in his judgement of the Alberta legislation, 1938, outlined quite clearly the relationship between the constitution of the United Kingdom and the British North America Act.

To quote here from that court judgement: “The preamble of the statute, moreover, shows plainly enough that the constitution of the Dominion is to be similar in principle to that of the United Kingdom. The statute contemplates a Parliament working under the influence of public opinion and public discussion. There can be no controversy that such institutions derive their efficacy from the free public discussion of affairs, from criticism and answer and counter-criticism, from attack upon policy and administration and defence and counter-attack; from the freest and fullest analysis and examination from every point of view of political proposals. This is signally true in respect of the discharge by ministers of the Crown of their responsibility to Parliament, by members of Parliament of their duty to the electors, and by the electors themselves of their responsibilities in the election of their representatives.”

The last statement is in keeping with an earlier one by Sir J. G. Bourinot, and I quote: “Some changes have necessarily been made in the course of time by the Canadian assemblies in their methods of procedure, but on the whole, the main principles of English parliamentary law have been retained in all their integrity.” That was contained in his book “Constitutional History of Canada.”

Since is is clear that English constitutional law and Canadian constitutional law demand taxation by way of legislation, then we must now examine the OHIP premium to determine if it is a tax and therefore subject to increase or decrease only by way of legislation.

It certainly appears that the Treasurer of Ontario (Mr. McKeough) treats the premium as a tax. In the Ontario budget 1978, the Treasurer states, “I have decided that it is necessary to raise additional revenues.” He goes on to propose “a balanced and equitable package of tax actions to raise an additional $374 million.” The first such tax action listed is OHIP premiums, and again the language used suggests a taxing procedure for the purpose of balancing the budget. The Treasurer says, “I am proposing to increase OHIP premiums to restore the balance of financing.”

The Treasurer’s statement of intent is followed up by a chart on page 18 titled, “Revenue Impact of Tax Changes.” There are two headings -- one, “Tax Increases,” and the other, “Tax Cuts.” Under “Tax Increases” the first item is OHIP premiums, $271 million.

In the Treasurer’s conclusions on page 19, he clearly sets out that he has presented a tax package and that the package is for the purpose of balancing the budget. The Treasurer says. “The balanced package of tax proposals I have put before you, along with our restrained spending plan, will keep Ontario’s finances in sound shape. The revenue shortfall we experienced in 1977-78 represents only a temporary setback to our goal of a balanced budget.”

While the language of the budget suggests that the OHIP premium increase is a form of taxation, the government may claim that the OHIP premiums are simply a premium for service and have been duly set out in the appropriate sections of the Health Insurance Act, 1972. I contend that such an argument is not relevant. The reference to a premium as opposed to a tax is a moot point.

The OHIP premium is a charge upon the people and payable ultimately into general revenues. It is what Erskine May, in his “Parliamentary Practice,” describes as a charge upon the people, “taken to connote any import in the nature of a tax or customs duty the proceeds of which are payable into the exchequer.”

The government may argue that the premiums are intended to cover the expenses of a government department in performing services for the public and therefore should not be considered to be a tax. Again, turning to Erskine May, we find the above is the case, except that “this rule is not allowed to legitimize charges so disproportionate to the cost of the services rendered as to amount to taxation.”

May reports to us that the Speaker has ruled that, in the case of a licence granted by a government department, the payment charged for the issue of the licence, if it is a small fee of an administrative character, should not be considered a charge upon the subject necessitating a ways and means resolution, but that if the fee charged did more than this, a ways and means resolution would be necessary. If the fees are payable into the exchequer, a ways and means resolution is rendered necessary.

For cases of fees imposed without a money resolution, members should take note of the electric lighting bill, 1882; the registration of business names bill, 1916; the non-ferrous metal industry bill, 1917; the dyestuffs (import regulation) bill, 1920; the fees (increase) bill, 1923; the agriculture (miscellaneous provisions) bill, 1962-63.

In view of this ruling, a ways and means resolution has been regarded as necessary in any case where the charge for a fee or licence has been unduly high or without a defined limit.

A parallel which is important to examine is the workmen’s compensation board. Are employer contributions to a provincial workmen’s compensation fund taxes that must meet the test of direct taxation, or are they in the nature of premiums statutorily exacted? The Privy Council indicated in the workmen’s compensation board versus the CPR in 1920 that such contributions were taxes.

In the case of Shannon versus the Lower Mainland Dairy Products Board (1938), the Privy Council had to consider whether section 124 of the Forest Act, providing for the creation of a forest protection fund through an annual levy on owners of timber lands and through annual provincial grants, imposed a tax or merely a service charge for fire protection services. Although imposed on a defined and limited class of persons and applicable to a special purpose without ever falling into the general mass of proceeds of taxation, the levy was held to be a tax.

In 1931 in the case of Lawson versus the Interior Tree Fruit and Vegetable Committee, J. Duff set our four criteria by which to judge whether a levy is a tax, and states that a levy is a tax if it is: 1. enforceable by law; 2. imposed under the authority of the Legislature; 3. imposed by a public body; 4. made for a public purpose.

Laskin, in his book “Canadian Constitutional Law,” draws a conclusion from the cases I have cited and other cases that “a tax under the BNA Act is not confined to an exaction for the support of the government.”

To state the matter another way, section 92(2) of the BNA Act, which allows “direct taxation within the province in order to raising of a revenue for provincial purposes,” can be interpreted to include items that are sometimes referred to as levies, premiums and licence fees, as well as a tax.

Furthermore, I submit that sections 12 and 51 of the original Health Insurance Act of 1972 were unconstitutional in granting a tax power to the Lieutenant Governor in Council. But even if the legislation of 1972 is ignored or given some benefit of doubt and allowed to stand, it remains that the actions of one Parliament cannot bind the actions of succeeding Parliaments.

Should the government of Ontario wish to increase OHIP premiums as a source of revenue for the operation of government programs, it should do so by way of legislation. To do otherwise is unconstitutional in my view. I ask that all members of this assembly join me in correcting the situation. The passage of my private member’s bill today and the subsequent committee work will enable the government to follow our accepted constitutional principle of no taxation without legislation.

Mr. Speaker: The hon. member for Peter- borough.

Mr. Turner: Mr. Speaker --

An hon. member: Quit while you are ahead.

Mr. Cassidy: Let’s hear you answer those constitutional authorities.

Mr. Turner: I wouldn’t pretend to do that.

Mr. Speaker, I have a very strong feeling after listening to the remarks of the former speaker that this bill is being put forward not so much to change the method used to arrive at the amount of the premium as it is to imply that the premium charge itself is excessive. If this be so, I would suggest that this is unfortunate, indeed unfair. I would like to point out that not only do the people of this province have one of the most comprehensive health insurance plans in the world --

Mr. Laughren: The most expensive.

Mr. Turner: -- but they receive a good number of benefits under that plan that are simply not available in other jurisdictions at any cost.

Mrs. Campbell: Look at Holland.


Mr. Turner: Just recently I was listening to the radio and I heard an advertisement for a company wishing to offer health coverage for people visiting this province from other jurisdictions. While the advertisement pointed out that people from Ontario are covered when they are in some other countries, it took great pains to say that this sort of coverage is not available in other jurisdictions.

Mr. Laughren: Don’t set up a straw man.

Mr. Turner: It is also true that the cost of health care in some places outside of our provincial boundaries has been sufficient to bring significant numbers of people to personal bankruptcy, and I am sure the members opposite are well aware of these. I do not believe it was ever the intention of our health insurance plan to deceive the public into thinking that health care is free --

Mr. Laughren: No, the Treasurer is deceiving the public.

Mr. Turner: -- or that, indeed, it is not expensive. Health care is expensive and it is growing more so every day. The objective of this government has been to try to slow down the rate of growth of that expense, but it has never been the government’s intention to try to hide from the public the fact that such expense exists. As has been pointed out on a number of occasions, if the insurance costs were to be paid by the people directly, the costs, in terms of actual outlay on the individual’s part, obviously would be considerably higher. The Ontario Health Insurance Plan is designed to give comprehensive basic coverage in Ontario at low cost. Because the Ontario Health Insurance Plan works smoothly and efficiently, many residents have forgotten what a doctor’s bill or a hospital bill even looks like, and perhaps this is part of the problem.

The Ontario Health Insurance Plan pays for medical and hospital care anywhere in the world, it provides a wide scope of benefits for medical and hospital services, as well as the services of certain other health practitioners. Residents of Ontario regardless of their age --

Mr. Cassidy: You’re out of order. You’re not speaking to the principle of the bill.

Mr. Turner: -- the state of their health, or their financial means are entitled to participate. The numbers of people who receive these benefits without the necessity of paying premiums are large. The plan pays up to 90 per cent of the fees listed as benefits in the current Ontario Medical Association schedule of fees for all physician services that are medically required.

These services include the physician’s services in the home --

Mrs. Campbell: Mr. Speaker, on a point of order, I am sorry to interrupt the speaker, but is this in accordance with the principles of this bill which is before us? It seems to be an apology for the health plan in the province, rather than a discussion of the effects of the premium versus the tax position, and the ability to debate it in the House.

Mr. Makarchuk: Whoever wrote his speech didn’t read the bill.

Mr. Speaker: The bill under discussion is an Act to amend the Health Insurance Act, 1972. I have listened very carefully to the hon. member and I find that he is speaking, generally, to the Health Insurance Act. Unless I hear some cogent reason why he shouldn’t be allowed to pursue in the same vein I will allow him to do so.

Mr. MacDonald: On this point of order, if there is an amendment to a bill, the point before the House is the amendment, not the broad bill. Many times in this House people have been forced to speak to the substance of the amendment and not the whole scope of the bill.

Mr. Speaker: I would hope that the hon. member would spend some time talking about the amendment. I see nothing wrong with what he has said so far --

Mr. McClellan: There’s nothing good about it, either.

Mr. Speaker: -- but I would hope he would spend some time speaking specifically about the amendment.

Mr. Turner: Mr. Speaker, in my opening remarks I thought I clarified my statement, and I will recall it again if I may. I had a very strong feeling -- and I’ll say it again -- that the former speaker is putting this bill forward not so much to amend or to change the method of arriving at the amount of the premium, as to imply that the premium charge itself is excessive.

Mr. MacDonald: That’s imputing a motive.

Mr. Cassidy: That’s imputing a motive and that’s unparliamentary.

Mr. Turner: Oh, nonsense.

Mr. Lawlor: Is it or isn’t it a tax?

Mr. Turner: That is the very point, that is the very point.

Mr. Lewis: Mr. Speaker, on a point of order. I think you know I respect both you and your office but I do want to draw to your attention, sir, that you have been quite fierce on occasion with members of the opposition --

An hon. member: He had to be.

Mr. Lewis: -- indeed, have ejected one or two exemplary members of the opposition -- when they failed to speak to the principle of a bill. The principle of this bill could not be clearer. It’s the question of whether the premium is a tax and whether therefore it is legally within the prerogative of this assembly to do it as the Treasurer has done it. The member, with the greatest respect, Mr. Speaker, is not in any way addressing himself to the principle of the bill and yet he’s getting away with it.

An hon. member: He’s not even close to it.

Mr. Lane: He is a very able member.

Mr. Turner: If I may take the time to reply, we are --

Mr. Speaker: Are you speaking to the point of order?

Mr. Turner: Yes. Sorry, I didn’t identify that. I am, in fact, addressing my remarks to the principle of the bill.

Mr. McClellan: No, you are not.

Mr. Cassidy: No, you’re not.

Mr. Breaugh: You’re talking to the point of order, now.

Mr. Turner: Oh, yes. Oh, yes.

Mr. Conway: Carry on, John.

Mr. Turner: The whole principle is whether --

Mr. MacDonald: You’re skating around it.

Mr. Turner: -- is whether the principle of this bill is addressed to a premium or a taxation.

Mr. McClellan: You don’t know what the principle of the bill is.

Mr. Cassidy: Should it go through the House or not? Yes or no?

Mr. Turner: We feel very strongly and I feel very strongly that this is a premium. It is not a tax.

Mr. Lewis: Then say so.

Mr. McClellan: Why don’t you say so?

Mr. Turner: I will, if the members opposite will give me a chance.

Mr. Makarchuk: Continue.

Mr. Turner: I’m reviewing, if I may, Mr. Speaker --

Mr. MacDonald: The Treasurer said it was a tax in his budget.

Mr. Cassidy: That’s right

Mr. MacDonald: Are you trying to say he’s wrong?

Mr. Cassidy: Are you calling him a liar?

Mr. Speaker: Order, please.

Mr. Turner: I would never presume to suggest that anybody is wrong.

Mr. Makarchuk: You’ll get under his skin if you do it.

Mr. Turner: I am suggesting that these are my own opinions, my own remarks with relation to the member’s bill.

Mr. Cassidy: Don’t be dogmatic or sanctimonious.

Mr. Turner: May I proceed, Mr. Speaker? Thank you very kindly.

Mr. Breaugh: You can try.

Mr. Turner: If I may just point out to the members that the services referred to earlier include services of the physician in the home, in his office or in the hospital --

Mr. Lewis: Point of order.

Mr. Turner: I’m just --

Mr. Speaker: Wait, now. I’ve got to remind the hon. member that the explanatory note says, “The bill repeals provisions of the Health Insurance Act, 1972, that authorize the Lieutenant Governor in Council to establish the cost of premiums by regulation.” Now that is, in fact, the principle of this bill. I have given the hon. member sufficient latitude and I hope that he will use whatever time he has left to speak directly to that principle.

Mr. Turner: Mr. Speaker, I didn’t mean to cause such a fuss. However, I do appreciate the concern of the members opposite and I do --

Mr. MacDonald: Better get a different ghost writer.

Mr. Turner: Perhaps, perhaps.

Mr. Cassidy: Just get a ghost writer.

Mr. Turner: Maybe that is the problem. However, if I may just sum up and without offending the sensibilities of any of the members in the chamber --

Mr. Lawlor: It doesn’t matter, does it, John? You’ve got 20 of the caucus lined up in the hallway outside at the moment, haven’t you?

Mr. Turner: -- I would like to point out --

Mr. Breaugh: Your time has expired.

Mr. Turner: Not quite.

Mr. McClellan: It should be.

Mr. Turner: -- that we feel very strongly that this is within the jurisdiction of government to collect a premium for a service that is being offered and it is not in any way to suggest that this is a tax on the people of Ontario.

Mr. Conway: Mr. Speaker, I always find it particularly interesting in this chamber, as one who is not always cognizant of the rules as stated where they are stated, to be lectured to by the hon. member for Scarborough West -- a fine and great politician --

Mr. Lewis: The member for St. George raised the point of order, you nitwit.

Mr. Conway: -- but no one I have ever seen is a more manipulative man of the rules than that gentleman. And there is no one --

Mr. Martel: The point of order was raised by the member for St. George.

Mr. Conway: There is no one in this House who by historical predeliction could understand --

Mr. Speaker: That’s not the principle of this bill, either.

Mr. Makarchuk: Good point!

Mr. Conway: Nobody can pick out an abuse of the rules faster than that gentleman.

Mr. Lewis: It’s an attack on the member for St. George who raised the point of order.

Mr. Conway: Mr. Speaker, I --

Mr. Lewis: Is there no end to your sexism?

Mr. Speaker: We’re dealing with Bill 32.

Mr. Conway: I rise in happy, total and personal support of this bill.

Mr. Lewis: Now sit down.

Mr. Conway: Beyond that, given the very nominalistic quality of this bill, I suppose there is not much one can say.

Mr. MacDonald: It is on one point. Deal with it.

Mr. Conway: The points that were made by the mover of this bill, I think are very well taken. It has been a regrettable part of the research that I have been involved in the past two or three weeks since the March 7 budget to find out that this increase seems to be clearly indicative of this government’s increasing reliance upon the OHIP premium as a tax. There is no question to answer to.

Mr. Cassidy: I think you are out of order already.

Mr. Conway: I really am feeling very constrained --

Mr. Lewis: Because you have to speak to the principle of the bill.

Mr. Conway: -- because I have to speak to a bill, the principle of which is very specific and quite supportable.

Mr. McClellan: Don’t be inhibited, Sean.

Mr. Conway: What I wanted to say in support --

Mr. McClellan: Go ahead and say it.

Mr. Conway: What I wanted to say in support of this particular bill is that, as a tax, this OHIP premium, as has been pointed out by many, is increasingly regressive. The manner in which it was brought forward by the Treasurer is not only gutless and deceitful, as was stated by others inside and outside of this House, but clearly indicative --

Mr. McClellan: Sleazy.

Mr. Conway: Sleazy may be too strong a term.

Mr. MacDonald: Gutless but not sleazy.

Mr. Conway: Certainly it is of concern to those of us who accepted the Treasurer’s logic in his budget paper of 1976, at which time we had the 45 per cent increase in premiums, based on what we were then told by the hon. Treasurer: “Premiums will now generate” -- in 1976 -- “28 per cent of the total financing of OHIP.”

Mr. Bradley: You are disturbing the Tory caucus, Sean.

Mr. Conway: “This is a more appropriate level than the 23 per cent raised and is a suitable long-term norm to maintain as health care costs increase in future years.”

My concern is that the Treasurer clearly has reneged on that commitment; he has no reason to be believed when he says now that this tax will be relied upon increasingly in the future. Those subscribers, and they are an ever-decreasing number of pay-direct subscribers, who are expected to pay an increasing proportion of the health care burden -- and that too is an interesting point, because --

Mr. Martel: That fellow should start looking for a new job tomorrow.

Mr. Conway: -- in his paper the Treasurer indicated a reliance upon what the Taylor report to the Premier said in December 1977.

Mr. Haggerty: And it didn’t say too much.

Mr. Conway: It didn’t say very much. What it said, I think represents the fundamental anathema to many members on this side of the House. Surely it is incumbent upon the Treasurer to define what it is he wants this premium to relate to. Does he expect this tax to be related to the overall health care costs? Are those premium subscribers who pay direct -- and I make that distinction --

Hon. Mr. Baetz: It was related to and consistent with federal legislation.

Mr. Conway: I make that distinction, because I think it is fundamentally unfair that the hon. member for Ottawa West, for example, should have this interpreted for him -- and, I presume, for myself -- as nothing more than a $144 pay raise.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: I don’t need it interpreted for me. I know. You are talking nonsense over there. This is consistent with federal legislation.

Mr. Conway: As he well knows from his previous days on the council for social development, that is the worst form of regressivity --

Hon. Mr. Baetz: I know a lot more about this than you do.

Mr. Speaker: Order.

Mr. Conway: -- that anyone with an ounce of progressive social philosophy in his veins must object to in principle. That is why.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: You don’t know your Constitution.

Mr. Conway: The hon. member for Ottawa West knows that. For him it is nothing more than a $144 pay raise; and if the cabinet is not paid enough --

Hon. Mr. Baetz: This legislation is consistent with federal legislation, which is also constitutional.

Mr. Conway: If the cabinet of this government is not paid enough, let them stand up in this House and ask for more money. But it will simply not be acceptable on the basis of this kind of regressivity.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: This is nonsense -- arrogant nonsense.

Mr. Conway: In this budget, the Treasurer offers us premiums -- and I quote from page 15 --

Hon. Mr. Baetz: You are trying to change federal and provincial legislation --

Mr. Lewis: That is claptrap. You’re sillier now than when you were with the council on social development.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: That’s not claptrap. You don’t know what you are talking about. This Act is consistent with federal legislation.

Mr. Kerrio: You know little enough about energy.

Mr. Conway: This budget and this Treasurer offer to us this premium increase as not only important but necessary because premiums “retain a visible link with the cost of services.”


Mr. Speaker: Order.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: If this is a tax, so is the Canada Pension Plan, so is unemployment insurance.

Mr. Speaker: Order. Will the Minister of Energy calm down just a little bit. I would like to hear what the hon. member for Renfrew North has to say about the principle of this bill.

Mr. MacBeth: The Minister of Energy is aptly named.

Mr. Conway: Mr. Speaker, the budget of March 7, 1978, which I think is related to the principle of this bill -- at least in my interpretation -- offers the premium as necessary and important, and I quote, “because they retain a visible link with the cost of services.” Mr. Speaker, I ask you --

Mr. MacDonald: That’s not a principle.

Mr. Conway: -- how it is that this tax, this premium, in any way relates to the cost of services?

Hon. Mr. Baetz: Make up your mind.

Mr. Lewis: Reuben, stop it. You are the only man who moved from feudalism to the Dark Ages and thought it was progress.

Mr. Conway: Because for the hon. member for Ottawa West and myself and 123 others there is no visible link in this whatsoever. There is a heck of a lot more visibility for that woodworker in Lake Nipigon who now pays for his family $528 worth of the most regressive tax that this government has increasingly relied upon.

Mr. Martel: It’s okay if you are in the cabinet.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: Is unemployment insurance a tax? Is the Canada Pension Plan a tax?

Mr. McClellan: You know all about unemployment insurance, don’t you? We remember your views on unemployment insurance.

Mr. Conway: And as if that visible-link argument is not of its own accord specious and irrelevant enough, what does the Treasurer tell us on page 33? He suggests that we really shouldn’t worry because “Table 2 shows that almost three-quarters of the increase will be paid for by employers.”

I think contained within the budget is a clear contradiction of this visibility that is offered to us as the one and only reason why this government increasingly relies on this kind of tax. And I was interested in that connection, because you know what this proves -- and you know why I think the hon. members bill is so important? It is that now that the Treasurer in his budget indicates that this is the third largest source of provincial revenue, it is going to force that government in this minority situation to come before this Legislature and ask for tax revenues as tax revenues.

Mr. MacDonald: Live within the Constitution.

Mr. Conway: As the hon. member for York South says, they are constitutionally required to do so.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: Is the Canada Pension Plan premium a tax?

Mr. Conway: Well, the Minister of Energy says that that is not all that bad. Let him say what he might.

Mrs. Campbell: He has changed.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: No, no.

An hon. member: He hasn’t changed.

Mr. Conway: Not only is the Treasurer unable to get beyond his Tory mentality which was marvellously outlined in the budget as well as in his --

Hon. Mr. Baetz: That has nothing to do with the principle of this bill.

Mr. Conway: -- response to the letters to the editor column in the Globe and Mail, March 16, where among other arguments he offered --

Hon. Mr. Baetz: You are off on a tangent again.

Mr. Conway: -- “the premium system is more progressive than some critics allow.”

Hon. Mr. Baetz: What’s wrong with that?

An hon. member: It’s stupid.

Mr. Conway: Well, not to forget, “it’s no less regressive than the sales tax.” That kind of argument I know the Minister of Energy can understand.

An hon. member: You are right there.

Mr. McClellan: A great social critic you are, Reuben.

Mr. Cassidy: You sure sold out, didn’t you?

Mr. Conway: He goes on to talk about the large number of free premiums and the fact that OHIP payments are for the most part --

Hon. Mr. Baetz: You are mixing apples and oranges in this argument.

An hon. member: You are mortgaged up to the hilt, Reuben.

Mr. Conway: -- subsidized by employers and that everyone must realize, the Treasurer tells us, that health costs are increasing.

Mr. Lewis: Reuben, if you were in British Columbia, you would have jumped in with Social Credit.

Mr. Conway: Well, if that is the case, --

Mr. Deputy Speaker: The hon. member’s time has expired.

Mr. Conway: -- let this government come before this House and ask for those revenues as taxes and not try to piggyback other general revenues upon that very small number of people, as it now turns out generally some 25 per cent of subscribers --

Mr. Deputy Speaker: Order.

Mr. Conway: -- who must pay directly.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: Is the Canada Pension Plan a tax? Is unemployment insurance a tax?

Mr. McClellan: You’ve got nothing left to sell out, Reuben. You’ve given it all away.

Mr. Kerrio: You would do well to learn something about the Energy portfolio.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: Rubbish.

Mr. Deputy Speaker: Order.

Mr. Breaugh: I don’t want to see the hon. Minister of Energy have to rush out and use this tax right away, and I wish he’d calm down before he does.

I want to speak directly to the principle of this bill, which I think is extremely important, and I think that the case in constitutional terms has been put most eloquently by my colleague from Scarborough-Ellesmere. It has been done with a thoroughness that I think is really rarely seen in this House. I think it is important that we recognize the importance of the bill, that, in effect, we have seen what is perhaps the most dominant tax action that this government has proposed to date this year and it has tried to get it through the House under the guise that it’s not a tax at all, that it is, in fact, something else.

I would guess that for someone as courageous as our provincial Treasurer, who possesses so much bravado and speaks with such a great, loud voice about so many things --

Mrs. Campbell: And with a forked tongue.

Mr. Breaugh: -- one would think he would have had the physical ability to bring this matter before the House. If his case is so strong, if he wants it, why does he not then bring it in in the form of legislation, as he will with other forms of tax action that he intends to take? In fact, in dealing with the principle of the bill -- are we talking about a tax? -- I think we would look first and foremost at where was this concept introduced into this House? It was introduced by the Treasurer himself in a list of things that he considered to be tax action. So it is a tax.

Is it a tax in the sense that it raises substantial amounts of revenue for the government of Ontario? It certainly does. Once again, when we look at what have we got going here, is this thing a tax, does it require legislation from this House before it should be approved, well, it certainly does.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: Does the Canada Pension Plan premium require legislation? It’s the same thing.

Mr. Breaugh: Look at, for example, even a simple family of four. With this particular tax, we’re looking at $528 a year for an average family. That’s a tax. Without question, that’s a tax. That’s a substantial amount of money. Of all the things the Treasurer could have done in terms of a deterrent fee, it certainly isn’t that. If he wanted to say this is kind of an admission charge, it certainly isn’t that. This is a form of taxation, without question.

Mrs. Campbell: It’s more than their income tax.

Mr. Breaugh: I think that undeniably in constitutional terms, undeniably as well in terms of raising revenue in a form that is perhaps unprecedented in this House, this is taxation. This particular measure, without question in my mind, requires that he brings before this House some legislation.

If we look at it in terms of what an individual has to pay, try this one on for size. OHIP as a percentage of taxable income is 6.5 per cent of taxable income for an average family of four. That’s a lot of money. That’s certainly nothing that we might consider to be casual. That’s certainly nothing that we might begin to consider to be anything other than a tax. Perhaps he’s trying to make an argument that it’s a tax by a different name, but none the less it is a tax in the classic parliamentary sense of taxation throughout our English parliamentary system.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: It is not. That is the mistake.

Mr. Martel: The Speaker ruled on it, my friend.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: Unemployment insurance premiums are not regarded as taxes in this country, nor are Canada Pension Plan premiums.

Mr. Martel: The Speaker ruled on it, Reuben. You are going to eat crow before you finish.

Mr. Breaugh: I want to put this in a context as well because I think that it is important that we do that. I think it is important we note that Ontario now has the dubious distinction of raising more money through these health insurance premiums, $1,120 million, than through the corporate income tax, where the guesstimation this year is $1,045 million. So, without question, the principle of this bill is important to this House. When this government chooses to tax the people of Ontario, when it chooses to raise substantial amounts of money, does it do so through the back door, by asking that someone raise the premium rate, which in effect operates as a tax, and in a classical, constitutional and parliamentary sense is in effect a tax by anybody’s definition? It’s precisely what we’re talking about here.

I think it is important for us to recognize that in this OHIP premium raise once again the members of this House have had one of the most dramatic forms of taxation that we’ll ever see pulled on them in this budget, and in fact it requires no legislation at all. That certainly is unfair and that speaks directly to the principle of this bill. We, as members of this House, as individual members of this House, demand that when the government does increase this form of taxation it brings that matter before this House in the form of legislation so that we can, in fact, properly debate it. It is taxation, without question.

I have listened to the debate from various private members here, and although this is said to be a private members’ hour, I am not so terribly sure that it has turned out to be that. I heard, in fact, from the government side of the House, some arguments which, in my mind, did not speak very directly to this principle. I would think that any member of this House, any member on either side of the House, would want to think the respect of the House is such that when a government of the day, any government of any day, raises this kind of taxation revenue, it does so only with legislation and that it brings it before this House. I don’t see that happening.

In looking at the opposite side of the House I don’t see very many people over there taking an interest in this.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: There’s one sitting over here that knows you’re wrong.

Mr. Breaugh: I dare say, Mr. Speaker, that there are a great many people in the province of Ontario --

Mr. Kerrio: We are talking about people who know something about it.

Mr. Peterson: Look after Hydro.

Mr. Breaugh: -- who will be faced with this most regressive form of taxation, who will find it a substantial hardship in this year; who will pay it whether they want to or not, whether they use it or not, as they do with most other forms of taxation.

Without question, Mr. Speaker, we see in this particular Parliament, right now, a government that has chosen to go through the back door, that has chosen not to bring fairly and squarely before this House what it intends to do.

Mr. Kerrio: They will block the bill.

Mr. Breaugh: I think that the purpose of this bill, the principle of this bill, is essential to the traditions of our own Parliament and to the value of the Parliament itself. I fail to understand why, with an array of things to do, in terms of raising money, in terms of taxing the people of Ontario, the Treasurer chose to step into the telephone booth, put on his killer T-shirt, and use this form of taxation. Perhaps he felt that deterrent fees were a little inappropriate, that it wasn’t appropriate to tax the sick when they were sick, but that this form of taxation was a little more fair.

Mr. Rotenberg: Will you support deterrent fees?

Mr. Breaugh: If that’s the case then I don’t see why he, as one member of this House, would object in the slightest this form of legislation.

I look, in great measure, at the members opposite. I wish there were more, because I think this is an important matter for this House to discuss. There aren’t many of them here now, Mr. Speaker, unfortunately I’d be prepared to predict --

Mr. Kerrio: They will be here tonight to block it.

Mr. Breaugh: -- that when the vote is called in this House this afternoon, there will be 20 mugwumps rising on that side of the House to see that we don’t even get a vote on it.

Mrs. Campbell: Absolutely, that is right.

Mr. Breaugh: Mr. Speaker, this principle is one that is fundamental to Parliament, that the members opposite who form the government of the day, when they want to raise taxation bring those matters before this House in legislative form so that the members of the House may have an opportunity to discuss it and to vote on it. That would be the same in a majority government, as it should be in a minority government. It is fundamental to the principles of the parliamentary democracy that we belong to that it be done in this form. I fail to see why any member of the House, in good conscience, could not support this legislation.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: The Health Insurance Act is consistent with federal policies.

Mr. Lewis: You don’t have unemployment insurance premiums dealt with within a budget; or CPP within a budget, Reuben. You don’t know what you are talking about my friend. You know nothing in this job and learned nothing in your former job.

Sorry to have to reveal that to Hansard; I feel embarrassed on your account.

Hon. Mr. Baetz: I am not going to listen to you any more. You are finished.

Mr. Deputy Speaker: Order.

Mr. Handleman: I thought you wanted to sit on the back bench.

Mr. McClellan: With whom? With Reuben Baetz?

Mr. Deputy Speaker: Order.


Mr. Deputy Speaker: Order. The hon. member for Durham West.

Mr. Ashe: Mr. Speaker, I’ve followed with particular interest since the budget was introduced, the many and varied legal points made by members opposite with respect to the British North America Act, and of course taxation without legislation.

Not being a lawyer myself I therefore took the opportunity to discuss some of these matters with the ministry’s legal staff. I am convinced that the member --

Mr. Swart: Why don’t you get outside information?

Mr. Martel: Why don’t you get Dracula?

Mr. Ashe: I don’t admit to be an expert in everything the way some people opposite seem to feel they are.

Mr. Cassidy: You are a member of this House and you are responsible to the electors.

Mr. Ashe: That’s right.

Mr. Peterson: You are the worst hack in the whole House.

Mr. Ashe: I am convinced that the member for Scarborough-Ellesmere is wrong in much of what he has said about changing OHIP premiums by regulation; and I think his bill, and the premise on which it is based, therefore, is completely wrong.

In the first place, I think that it is clear that a premium paid as consideration for health insurance, of course, is not a tax.

Mr. MacDonald: You are denying your boss.

Mr. Ashe: As with premiums paid on any contract of insurance, be it home, car, accident and sickness, OHIP premiums are variable from time to time depending on the insurer’s costs and the claims record.

Mr. McClellan: You are always attacking the Treasurer.

Mr. MacDonald: The Treasurer said it was.

Mr. Ashe: I shall deal with this record later in my remarks, Mr. Speaker.

I should note that the legislation out in British Columbia --

Mr. Swart: How come he gives you all the hopeless jobs?

Mr. Ashe: -- put in of course by another political party, established the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, which permits that corporation, without any reference to the Legislature, to establish premiums payable for auto insurance. And with respect to these insurance premiums --

Hon. Mr. Baetz: That’s right.

Mrs. Campbell: And it’s used for automobile insurance.

Mr. Cassidy: It’s not a tax measure.


Mr. Ashe: -- it seems to be an entirely reasonable approach.

Mr. Cassidy: It’s not a tax measure. It’s a separate corporation.

Mr. Ashe: I would like briefly to speak to several legal points also, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. MacDonald: You had better get a different lawyer. So far your legal points are pretty feeble.

Mr. Ashe: I am advised that the recent Supreme Court of Canada decision in the reference regarding the Agricultural Farm Products Marketing Act handed down in mid-January of this year supports our view that levies collected for the purpose of defraying expenses are in fact not taxes. In that case the Chief Justice deals at great length with sections 53 and 54 of the British North America Act and concludes that in that instance levies made on egg producers were not taxes but “merely ingredients of a regulatory scheme and are considered as elements thereof.”

Mr. Peterson: Poppycock.

Mr. Martel: The whole public isn’t egg producers. It isn’t the same principle at all.

Mr. Ashe: It seems to me as well that premiums payable under the Health Insurance Act, 1972, are levies made to recover the costs of operating an insurance scheme. The premiums are ingredients of a much larger health insurance scheme and are to be considered as only one of the elements of the Health Insurance Act. In any event, even if OHIP premiums were to be considered a tax -- and I firmly believe of course that they are not -- an early decision in legal history, Powell vs. the Apollo Candle Company Limited -- so as you can see we are going back a while --

Mr. Swart: About your time.

Mr. Ashe: -- from the Supreme Court of New South Wales, firmly supports the proposition that sections 53 and 54 of the British North America Act do not require legislation for the alteration of premiums imposed pursuant to section 12 of the Health Insurance Act.

In that case, the Customs Act of New South Wales permitted the governor to impose duties by order in council. The court concluded that the duties levied under the order in council were levied by the authority of the Act under which the order is issued. There it was also argued that under the constitution, similar to sections 53 and 54 of the British North America Act, only the Legislature could impose a tax.

I would like to read to members one excerpt from the decision of Sir Robert Collier in that instance:

“It has been argued that the proviso on section 1 that all bills for appropriating any part of the public revenue or imposing any new tax, rate or impost shall originate in the legislative assembly in the colony, at least a direction on the part of the Imperial Parliament that all levying of taxes in the colonies shall be by bill originating, as in this country, in the lower House.

“It may be that the Legislature assumes that with respect to customs duties such a course would be pursued as undoubtedly as in accordance with the usages and traditions of this country, but it appears to their lordships impossible to hold that the words of an Act which do not more than prescribe the motive procedure with respect to certain bills shall have the effect of eliminating the operation of these bills.

“It is argued that the tax in question has been imposed by the governor and not by the Legislature, who alone had the power to impose it. But the duties levied under the order in council are really levies by the authority of the Act under which the order is issued. The Legislature has not parted with its perfect control over the governor and has the power, of course, at any moment of withdrawing or altering the power which they have entrusted to him.”

In passing section 12 of the Health Insurance Act, 1972, I believe this House at that time acted properly in vesting the authority to alter the rate of premiums in the Lieutenant Governor by regulation. I would now like to indicate why it seems to me to be so vital that the necessary flexibility be available in establishing the level of OHIP premiums.

Mr. Swart: Because you couldn’t get it through the Legislature.

Mr. Cassidy: That’s right, because you haven’t got the guts to come before the Legislature.

Mr. Ashe: There is little doubt that the provision of a top-notch health care system is of paramount importance in the eyes of the public and this government. However, it is becoming more and more difficult each year to finance the costly proposition of maintaining good health care. I would like to give members some idea just how costly it is.

Since OHIP was introduced in 1972, expenditure on insured services has increased by $1.7 billion. This fiscal year these expenditures will claim over 23 per cent of budgetary revenue. Expenditures have grown despite a very successful spending control program which for this year will hold the rate of expenditure growth on OHIP to just over six per cent. This is in stark contrast to the 24 per cent experienced in 1974-75. Further, this success has not been at the expense of quality in our health care system.

More needs to be done, however, and to achieve further successes we need the cooperation of each and every citizen of this province. Only through prudent and judicious utilization of our health care system can we be assured of maintaining the kind of health care system we have all come to expect within the fiscal resources that we have at our disposal.

So that you don’t get all shook up, Mr. Speaker, I am going to --

Mr. Deputy Speaker: I just feel the hon. member is straying somewhat from the principle.

Mr. Ashe: Not really --

Mr. Warner: He’s completely lost.

Mr. MacDonald: Don’t dispute the Speaker; deal with the principle.

Mr. Ashe: The point is that there is no doubt that the growth of revenue available is not nearly equivalent to the amount of the growth of expenditures, and from time to time changes have to be made. It is obvious that quality reductions or service cutbacks are not wanted by the people of Ontario. Further, since we have committed ourselves to a balanced budget by 1981, deficit financing ceases to be an option. That leaves increases in taxes as opposed to OHIP premium changes.

It is true tax increases could have brought in new financing for OHIP. The government of Ontario could have raised the personal income tax by 10 per cent, or raised the retail sales tax by eight per cent, or found the money by boosting the corporate income tax. These are very unattractive options, given the sensitivity of consumer and investor confidence to tax changes. The result might have produced long-lasting and adverse effects on a recovering Ontario economy.

Mr. Cassidy: What about the adverse effects on the families of the province? Answer that question.

Mr. Ashe: I’ll speak to that right now. The level of premiums is not nearly as bad --

Mr. Cassidy: Sure, put the corporations ahead of the people of the province, eh?

Mr. Ashe: He wants to hear it, but he doesn’t want to hear it, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Swart: He knows what the answer is.

Mr. Ashe: They are not nearly as bad as some critics might have one believe. About 1.9 million Ontarians, who are pensioners, welfare recipients and those on low income, are provided free coverage. About three-quarters of the rest of the people of this province are covered wholly or partly under company plans. Since any amount that employers pick up on behalf of employees is considered as taxable income, the burden of premiums is distributed far more progressively than at first meets the eye. The higher-income person pays a higher rate of tax on the employer’s contribution.

I think one would have to admit that there do exist some individuals and families whose taxable income just slightly exceed the ranges within which free or half-premium coverage is available, and as such, the new premium levels are unfairly burdensome. I am assured that our officials are studying this problem and that they are working toward a viable solution to offset any undue hardship.

Mr. Peterson: Go to the boss and get a cut in pay.

Mr. Cassidy: A viable solution is to stop the premium increase.

Mr. Ashe: I am opposed to the provisions of Bill 32. I believe this House acted properly in 1972 --

Mr. Cassidy: You are opposed to parliamentary democracy.

Mr. Ashe: -- and earlier years in leaving the determination of premium levels and the necessary flexibility --

Mr. Deputy Speaker: Order: The hon. member’s time has expired.

Mr. Ashe: Mr. Speaker, I beg to differ with you. If you counted the first two minutes before I had the floor, I got up at 5:30 --

Mr. McClellan: Challenge the Speaker’s ruling.

Mr. Deputy Speaker: Order.

Mr. Ashe: If I may close, then, with one line, Mr. Speaker: Within the options available to government, I believe that the level of premiums balanced against the quality of health care service is as equitable and fair to the people of the province as it is humanly possible to make it, and this government should be able to determine that disposition.

Mr. Kerrio: You said it, but you don’t believe it.

Mr. Ashe: I do.

Mr. Peterson: Mr. Speaker, we don’t have a great deal of time, and I just want to make a small contribution. A great number of worthwhile things have already been said. I would like at the outset to congratulate the member for Scarborough-Ellesmere. I thought he made a first-class presentation. It will go down in the annals of the House with some of the finer speeches and better contributions and better-researched documents, and I congratulate him.

We in this party totally and 100 per cent support his view and the view expressed by my colleagues here already. I think his historical dissertation, starting in 1215 with the Magna Carta and subsequently, has been a worthwhile contribution. In fact, it has probably moved the NDP political philosophy ahead at least two centuries anyway, so that in itself was a contribution.

Mr. Warner: At least two.

Mr. Peterson: Mr. Speaker, I don’t want to be repetitive, but I want to emphasize the things that I think are so terribly important in this debate. I see the Treasurer talking at dramatic cross purposes in the introduction of this premium. I want to read from the budget, if I may, and this is leading to the very salient points that directly affect this Bill 32.

He says, under OHIP premiums, “The control of health costs continues to be a high priority.” I would respectfully submit that this premium, this regressive tax -- and I fully accept the argument that it is a tax; nobody has any choice in this province whether he pays it or not -- does not in any way address the problem of control of health costs. What we can see next year if they do not address their minds to this expanding and burgeoning system of health care, is another increase in premiums sneaking through the back door, not being addressed by this Legislature.

It is time that this Legislature fully, clearly and in depth reviewed the entire medical care system in this province and decided as a matter of public policy, not as a matter of regulation, how much a percentage of our revenue, of our total tax dollars, of our gross provincial product we are prepared to spend on health care.

The government has begged the question of these expanding health care costs when it just raises more revenue to pay for increased costs, because I see with this philosophy a continuing expansion of this kind of thing. It’ll happen next year and the year after and the year after, extracting a greater and higher percentage out of the public purse. Whether we call it a tax or a premium it still comes out of the productive capital of this province, and it is our view that we are almost at the economic choke point right now. We can’t afford to raise a higher percentage of taxes out of the gross provincial product.

The question then becomes, obviously, what is the fairest and most equitable way to extract this revenue? I fully subscribe to the argument expressed by the members of the third party as well as the members of the Liberal Party who have spoken on this issue before. If one needs additional revenue -- and I question that -- then clearly this is not the most attractive or fairest way to extract that revenue. It gives me very serious problems.

The Treasurer’s other argument is to provide the visible link. I respectfully say to the Minister of Health that this increase in OHIP premiums in many respects is going to be a payroll tax -- and the Treasurer talks so eloquently about trying to maintain some reasonable tax climate in this province -- and employers are going to look at that and say, “I cannot afford any more employees, because I can’t afford those extra payroll taxes.” When they’re paying workmen’s compensation, increases in OHIP and all of the other kinds of taxes that one pays on payrolls today, it’s becoming less and less attractive to hire people. Certainly that’s the most important, fundamental economic problem we have in this province today. The government is punishing people who are employing people and is, in fact, providing no visible link.

We have a health care system where someone who is a beneficiary of the system has absolutely no idea what charge he is on the public purse. One can’t find out to save one’s soul how much it costs to stay in a hospital. We had a baby about six months ago and I had to ask many people how much of a charge we were on the public purse for doctors and anaesthetists and hospitals and all that kind of thing. Clearly, if he wants to provide that visible link, the Minister of Health (Mr. Timbrell) has an obligation to make sure every single person in this province knows how much he is taking out of this total bill of about $4 billion. That’s where to start.

A hidden tax that goes on the payroll will not provide that visible link, in my opinion. The minister has a very major and important administrative job to do quickly to address that question of the “visible link” which the Treasurer talks about and which a consumer of the service in this province can hardly find out to save his soul. It’s the only system in the world where one can walk in and consume unlimited amounts of services without knowing what one pays or knowing the costs of it in any regard. I would say that is the fundamental and most important administrative problem that they have in the Ministry of Health. I say to the Minister of Health he has an obligation to start on that right away.

I just wanted to make that small contribution. There is no question in my mind that if this came before the House it would be defeated and the government would be defeated. Obviously, we see all the government members now starting to pour in.

Mr. Kerrio: Blocking it.

Mr. Peterson: We’ll see 20 of them stand up and block this bill, because there’s no question that if this came to a vote it would be defeated and the government would probably have to take it as a matter of confidence. We think it is unfair. We think it is unequitable. We think when the government is raising $1.2 billion by regulation, undiscussed by this Legislature, then it is taking the chicken-hearted way out of this situation.

I have to ask myself in fairness, would the Treasurer have done this if there was a majority government, or would he have used a different kind of mechanism? Would he have had the courage to bring it before this House -- knowing he would win, of course, in a majority -- if we were in those kinds of circumstances? I tend to think that this government has taken the cowardly way out of this program in order to obscure from this House the very important issues of these expanding health costs, which still have yet to be addressed.


I regret that and I am so happy about the Liberal Party’s contribution to force this thing into committee, and we are going to expect a great deal of co-operation; because if the minister cannot come up with a way to control these expanding health costs I can assure him that we will. And we are looking forward to making a very significant contribution.

Hon. Mr. Parrott: Tell us; get with it.


Mr. Peterson: We are the ones who forced this into committee. We are the ones who have asked for a full legislative review.

Hon. Mr. Timbrell: Why didn’t you do it in estimates?

Mr. Peterson: We have never had a legislative review of this whole program, and it has grown like Topsy in the past 10 years.

Hon. Mr. Parrott: We have not had one idea from that party; not one idea.

Mr. Peterson: The minister should have initiated it. We had to deploy certain mechanisms and rules of this House in order to bring about that kind of review, and we are looking forward to making that kind of contribution.

Mr. Speaker: The hon. member’s time has expired.

Mr. Peterson: Mr. Speaker, we fully support the member for Scarborough-Ellesmere; and again I compliment him and I am glad we have had an opportunity to debate this bill today.

Mr. Warner: May I defer the last couple of minutes to my colleague from Sudbury? Am I allowed to do it?

Mr. Speaker: That’s your choice.

Mr. Martel: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I only want to make a few comments.

OMSIP, as it was known, came into Ontario rather reluctantly. I remember Robarts calling it a Machiavellian scheme; and since that time the Tories have done nothing to make it palatable in Ontario in terms of fairness.

It was this party, in fact, way back then, that opposed it; opposed the OHIP scheme, we voted against it at that time, because it was inequitable.

Mr. MacDonald: And won a by-election because of it.

Mr. Martel: I want to remind members of 1969, I want to give them a few figures.

In 1969, when this was introduced in Ontario, the premiums were $177 in Ontario. They were $48 in Saskatchewan, $117 in Manitoba, $120 in Alberta and $150 in BC. Today, in the same provinces Mr. Speaker, they are zero, the premiums in Saskatchewan; zero in Manitoba; $169 in Alberta; $225 in BC; and $528 in Ontario, up 300 per cent.

Mr. Swart: That says a lot about your government.

Mr. Martel: That says a lot about the richest province.

We opposed it in that day, Mr. Speaker. And I remind you, that there was a ruling made, when my colleague from Scarborough --

Hon. Mr. Timbrell: How much do you pay today in BC?

Mr. Martel: By the way, the member for Scarborough West at that time made the following statement about this bill: “As a matter of fact, Mr. Speaker, without being unkind, this Act might better be entitled an Act respecting the rescue of the provincial Treasurer”; because that is what it was doing. That is what he said in 1969, you are bailing out the Treasurer. If it was that then, imagine what it is like today,

As we moved a number of amendments in that bill, let me tell members what the Speaker of the day ruled with respect to the amendments moved by my colleague, to show my friend, the Minister of Energy, that the Speaker of the day considered it a tax.

My colleague moved an amendment, and the Speaker made the following ruling: “It seems to me that the motion presented or raised by the hon. member for Scarborough West has to do with raising of revenue, the premiums going into the revenue accounts of the province of Ontario; and it seems to me it would be beyond the competence of the hon. member to indicate the amount of these revenues or taxations as such.

“There is a rule forbidding any motion having to do with the raising of taxes or revenues, and this specifically seems to me to be a matter of part of the revenue of the province which goes into the consolidated revenue fund for the expenditure to offset costs, and it certainly seems to me to be out of order.”

Mr. Lewis: Right, you are breaking the law.

Mr. Martel: The Speaker of the day ruled that my colleague could not move an amendment which in fact was a tax, or rule against the tax --

Hon. Mr. Auld: Or revenue.

Mr. Martel: Revenue. And that is what you have now, a form of taxation; the amendment was ruled out of order by the Speaker because a private member cannot deal with taxation.

One final quote, if I might, Mr. Speaker, because the Speaker of the day then went on to elaborate with one more sentence. And he said: “It is provided that the House shall not adopt or pass any vote, resolution, address or bill for the appropriation of any part of the public revenue, or of any tax or impost to any purpose that has not been first recommended by a message of the Lieutenant Governor in the session in which the vote, resolution, address or bill is proposed.”

I suggest to you, Mr. Speaker, that it is out of order, and you can’t do it.


Sufficient members having objected by rising, a vote was not taken on Bill 40.


Sufficient members having objected by rising, a vote was not taken on Bill 32.

The Honourable the Administrator of the Province of Ontario entered the chamber of the Legislative Assembly and took his seat upon the throne.


Hon. W. G. C. Howland (Administrator of the Province of Ontario): Pray be seated.

Mr. Speaker: May it please Your Honour, the Legislative Assembly of the province has, at its present sittings thereof, passed certain bills to which, in the name of and on behalf of the said Legislative Assembly, I respectfully request Your Honour’s assent.

Clerk Assistant: The following are the titles of the bills to which Your Honour’s assent is prayed.

Bill 23, An Act to amend the Highway Traffic Act.

Bill 25, An Act to amend the Tobacco Tax Act.

Bill 27, An Act to amend the Retail Sales Tax Act.

Bill 33, An Act to amend the Land Titles Act.

Bill 34, An Act to amend the Registry Act.

Clerk of the House: In Her Majesty’s name, the Honourable the Administrator of the Province of Ontario doth assent to these bills.

The Honourable the Administrator was pleased to retire from the chamber.

Hon. Mr. Welch: Mr. Speaker, perhaps as a matter of convenience for yourself, I might call the second order just before we break for supper.

Mr. Conway: Can 20 members kill it?

An hon. member: You couldn’t do anything because you couldn’t scrape up that many.

Mr. Conway: You’ll be killing the Lord’s Prayer next.

Hon. Mr. Welch: You only had six or seven Grits in their seats.

Mr. Martel: You’re killing the private members’ hour.

Mr. MacDonald: They’re not killing it; it’s dead. They’re mutilating the corpse.

The House recessed at 6 p.m.