32nd Parliament, 1st Session


































The House met at 2 p.m.



Hon. Mr. Wells: Mr. Speaker, a number of members of this House have just come from St. Michael's Cathedral where there was an ecumenical service of thanksgiving and prayers for the speedy recovery of Pope John Paul II. I am sure the members of this House and the people of Ontario would like us to take note of this very tragic event.

When we heard of the tragic shooting of the Holy Father in St. Peter's Square yesterday, I am sure we all were saddened and were again struck by the amount of needless violence that exists in the world. He is a man who is dedicated to reconciliation. He is a man who has preached peace; but not just from a pulpit in a church in Rome, he has actually gone around the world to preach peace in those areas where he felt it was most needed. Pope John Paul II is also dedicated to human betterment. Suddenly we saw this man of peace, with all these qualities, struck down by a violent act.

I do not know if many of my colleagues have attended services in St. Peter's Basilica, but one of the things that struck me when I had the privilege of attending a service there was the warmth and feeling of rapport between Pope John Paul II and the people present. I have often wished we could have that same kind of rapport and that same feeling as politicians. As he came into the church the audience applauded spontaneously; because of that warmth of feeling, they applauded all the time as he walked down the aisle. I have that same feeling towards him and a feeling of shock and sadness that this violent event has occurred.

On this, our first occasion to recognize it, I am sure all members of this House, on behalf of all the people of Ontario, would want to express their thanksgiving that he is spared and that the shots fired into him were not fatal, and will join with the many millions of people around the world in praying that he will completely recover to carry on the fine work he has been doing.

Mr. Smith: Mr. Speaker, certainly every member of this House will want to join with the House leader of the government, on behalf of all the citizens of Ontario, to express our thanks that Pope John Paul II has survived this attempted assassination and our hope and prayers that he will continue to recover swiftly and fully from this unwarranted and dastardly attack.

The question that is on everybody's mind seems to be why anybody would want to shoot or attempt to kill such a beloved figure of peace. It is interesting, if we reflect on the attempts -- successful, unfortunately, in most instances -- on John Kennedy, Robert Kennedy, Martin Luther King and John Lennon, that so many of these attempts are clearly made on people who are loved and who are well regarded by their fellow human beings.

These loners, these ne'er-do-wells, these miserable people with their shrivelled personalities and atrophied minds who feel like outsiders, seem to go after the people who are being loved. They are jealous of the fact that these individuals are being loved, and they feel that somehow as outsiders they can prove a point or make themselves greater or more meaningful by doing that. I think it is one of the tragedies of our time that these nuts are able to get hold of weapons and are able to launch attacks of this kind on our most beloved public figures.

All of us are obviously in a state of some reflection about this, and all of us can only hope that this trend will reverse itself somehow, although it is not easy to see how that is going to happen. We certainly are glad and thank God that the Pope has so far withstood the attack, and we hope for his full recovery.

Mr. Cassidy: Mr. Speaker, after I have made my remarks perhaps you could ask the House to observe a few moments of silent prayer to reflect the feelings of this House for a safe recovery for Pope John Paul II. Perhaps also we can hope that this rule of violence, which showed itself in Washington a few weeks ago and has shown itself again in St. Peter's Square, the centre of the Roman Catholic Church and the centre of Christianity for millennia, can somehow come to an end in the world and the citizens of the world can come to their senses.

I join with the statements made by the House leader and by the Leader of the Opposition. The New Democrats join with the people of our province, of our country and of the whole world in thanksgiving that Pope John Paul's life appears to have been spared, but in shock, in horror and in revulsion at the fact that at the time this man of peace was mingling with the crowds in St. Peter's Square -- mingling with pilgrims who had come from around the world to be there with their spiritual leader for a few brief moments -- this man who had the courage and the zest for life and the daring to be prepared to show himself and be with the masses and not just be a distant, remote figure, should have been gunned down by a violent assassin.

Make no mistake: while we give thanks that Pope John Paul's life appears to have been spared, he faces many weeks of recovery. Although he is a robust man, a man who exercises and a man who at 60 is at the height of his powers, there will still be anxious moments ahead. Those bullets could have killed the Pope, just as the assassin's bullet could have killed the President of the United States, just as an assassin's bullet could come in Canada, the United States, France, Great Britain or any other country in this senseless pattern of violence, this insane kind of attack on all the established leaders in the arts, in politics and in the church.

Pope John Paul II has been a voice for social conscience. He has given inspiration to those elements within the Catholic Church who have been fighting for social justice in countries and areas such as Latin America. He has been a voice, a courageous voice, for peace. All of us remember the time that he went on a pilgrimage to Ireland and spoke there to half a million or more of the faithful, both from Northern Ireland and southern Ireland. He spoke out in a way that no one has yet succeeded in doing in terms of the strength of leadership he was able to provide in seeking a peaceful solution to the agonies of Ireland.

2:10 p.m.

He is a spiritual leader whose voice is heard around the world. I say on behalf of us all that our grief that this should even be attempted is matched now by our thanksgiving, and we join with billions of others in hopes and prayers that Pope John Paul will recover. We pray this kind of insane event will never again occur, and that we can move to the kind of world of peace that Pope John Paul II and so many others have fought for, hoped for, prayed for -- a world of peace where this kind of insane attack will never again occur.

Mr. Newman: Mr. Speaker, I would like to make a few comments as a member of this Legislature whose father migrated to Canada at the end of the last century and decided to settle in this land, and as one who has always attended a Polish church. In Windsor we happen to have a Polish Roman Catholic church whose pastor and religious sisters at that church knew the Pope personally, since they had him as an instructor in religious training in their earlier days.

Words cannot truly express the horror and grief in our hearts at the news of the attempted assassination of Pope John Paul II. This unique man of God who promised the world a ministry of love has been devout, tireless and courageous in carrying out that ministry. The Holy Father has done much more than be a spiritual leader to the world's Roman Catholics. He has become an inspiration to us all as he covered more than 100,000 miles on his global tours in the name of peace and brotherhood.

Wherever he has travelled he has preached the gospel of love and peace. However, he has preached this gospel in a fashion that has given new meaning to those ancient words, making them terms of active and vital dedication, and dynamic, determined opposition to all that is evil and violent in the human body.

Our thoughts and prayers are with him today and will be with him in the days ahead as he struggles, with the help of his medical advisers and guardians and with the grace of God, to recover his health and strength.

Mr. Speaker: Thank you, Mr. Newman. I am sure all members of the Legislature join the many millions of people around the world in this moment of grief and thanksgiving that the Pope's life was spared. I wonder if all the members of the Legislature would rise and join with me in a few moments of silent prayer.

The House observed a moment of silent prayer for Pope John Paul II.

Mr. Speaker: Thank you. I trust all our prayers and best wishes will go for a speedy recovery.


Mr. Ruprecht: Mr. Speaker, I told this House on May 7 that the administration of the Queen Street Mental Health Centre is tight-lipped and that I could not get through to the administrator in spite of various telephone calls. I said the public relations man there had been told not to talk to anyone on the outside about whatever goes on on the inside and that generally there is a shroud of secrecy about the hospital. In response to these statements, the Minister of Health said, "What the honourable member is stating is quite incorrect," referring to me.

Mr. Speaker, I have a memorandum here -- it is confidential -- that indicates a much worse situation. I will quote just one sentence. It says here: "Visits by politicians, regardless of party, should not be permitted unless approved by the minister's office."

I would like to ask the honourable member opposite how he can justify such a statement.

Hon. Mr. Timbrell: Mr. Speaker, on the point of privilege, which is really a question and should be part of question period, the answer is really quite simple: I do not intend to have any patients in any institutions coming under my jurisdiction used for political purposes.


Mr. Mancini: Mr. Speaker, a couple of days ago the House participated in a vote and there was a division in the House concerning the government's throne speech. I want to say to you, sir, that I was quite surprised that the member for Durham East (Mr. Cureatz), the Deputy Speaker of the House, chose to participate in that vote and in that division in the House.

It is my contention -- and I hope all honourable members give this some consideration, especially the member for Durham East, who takes his place in the Speaker's chair when you are not available, Mr. Speaker -- that he must undertake his responsibilities in a way that would convey to all members of the House that he is being even, fair and nonpartisan at all times. It is my fear that if the Deputy Speaker of the House continues to vote with the government party every time there is a division in this House, when he does assume his place in the chair and when there are difficult decisions for him to make, it may appear in someone's mind that the decisions and statements and positions he takes as Deputy Speaker may be partisan.

I would suggest that the Deputy Speaker of the House take this into consideration, think about the matter seriously and decide whether it is really necessary for him to involve himself in these partisan votes in the light of the high office he now holds and in the light of the fact that he must not only always be independent but must always appear to be independent.

Mr. Speaker: I can assure the member for Essex South there is nothing improper about this, nor is there anything provided for under the standing orders to prevent it. I think, in all honesty, the Deputy Speaker is a very fair-minded man and it will be left up to his good judgement whether he participates.



Hon. Mr. Henderson: Mr. Speaker, I would like to bring this House up to date on a number of matters relating to interest rates and beef and hog prices.

As members may be aware, my ministry operates five farm income stabilization programs. One of these covers sow-weaner operations. Participating producers contribute one third of the enrolment fee, while the government pays the other two thirds. A payment is made on each sow enrolled when the market price of feeder hogs falls below a certain level. I will not go into the method of calculating the support price because it is rather complicated. I will be glad to point it out to any of the members on an individual basis.

However, our early information suggests we will be making a payment in late June under this program to cover the period of October 1, 1980, to March 31, 1981, since the price of market hogs appears likely to be lower than the support price. For the previous period covering April 1 to September 30, 1980, the sow-weaner stabilization plan paid out a total of $9.3 million. I am announcing this now to give heart to our sorely pressed hog producers.

2:20 p.m.

I would like to turn now to the meeting I attended in Ottawa on Tuesday of this week. Eugene Whelan, the federal Minister of Agriculture, invited provincial agriculture ministers to discuss interest rates and low hog and beef prices. This was a meeting that I had asked him to call.

It was a good meeting. Each provincial minister had an opportunity to present the case for his farmers and some useful discussion came out of these presentations. There was general agreement for the seven-point program which I, as the minister for Ontario, proposed. I would like to list those points briefly at this time.

First, I proposed that Farm Credit Corporation financing be expanded to meet the needs of producers, including the need for refinancing mortgages, and that the higher interest rate apply only to the additional amount borrowed at the time of refinancing. I am happy to say that Mr. Whelan agreed to work on this matter. He also said the Farm Credit Corporation interest rate will remain at 14 per cent until October, when the legislation requires that it be reviewed. He also indicated he will recommend expanded funding to his cabinet colleagues.

I also proposed that the Farm Improvement Loans Act be amended to allow loans for the consolidation of debt.

To make small business bonds available to individual farmers, Mr. Whelan undertook to recommend a change in the Income Tax Act to his cabinet colleagues. If the federal cabinet agrees with Mr. Whelan and if all-party agreement is obtained for speedy passage, small business bonds would be available to individual farmers this summer.

In the case of my proposal for an investment fund to lend money for agricultural purposes at reduced interest rates, with tax shelter benefits for investors, the federal minister said the Department of Finance was considering such a fund.

Mr. Whelan also said he would be making proposals to the federal cabinet for a change in the Farm Credit Corporation legislation which would also give private investors tax shelter benefits and farm borrowers lower interest rates. Again, provided cabinet approves and speedy all-party passage is granted, the change could be implemented this summer.

I dealt in some detail with stabilization payments in my remarks. For the short term, I requested strongly that the federal government speed up its payments, which are often made many months after livestock are sold. Mr. Whelan promised to streamline the federal system and appeared interested in the pork board's offer to help reduce paperwork. He said he would soon be making an announcement regarding the 1980-81 hog payments.

Unfortunately, the federal beef program will not be making a payout this year as 1980-81 prices were above the support level. I pointed out to Mr. Whelan that beef farmers were in deep trouble, and he acknowledged that every feeder lot in the country was in a loss situation. Nevertheless, the beef program will not be making a payout. I suggested the federal program was failing in its intent to protect the farmers from violent price swings and rising costs.

I also recommended that federal stabilization programs be run on a six-month payment period and that support levels be raised from the present 90 per cent to 95 per cent for hogs. I suggested it could be 100 per cent if the producer contributed one third of the enrolment fee. Mr. Whelan said he would put support price levels and harmonization of federal and provincial stabilization plans on the agenda for the meeting of federal-provincial agriculture ministers in mid-July.

I told Mr. Whelan that pending some real improvement in the federal beef program, we in Ontario would be looking at making our own arrangements. To that end I have asked the Ontario Farm Income Stabilization Commission to meet with the Ontario Cattlemen's Association to discuss a possible plan for Ontario. The cattlemen have chosen May 26 as the meeting day. If beef producers want such a plan, our existing legislation would permit one to be established.

I also pointed out what Ontario is doing to help our farmers in this difficult period. I am encouraging farmers to take advantage of the credit advice available through my ministry, and I am advising young farmers to take advantage of the Ontario young farmer credit program for debt consolidation. In addition, I have established a committee to review the operation of Ontario farmers whose creditors are about to call their loans. I have written to the banks requesting their co-operation in this.

All the ministers present at that meeting urged the federal government to adopt a rational approach to interest rates. They agreed with Ontario's position that interest rates are a federal responsibility and that only the federal government can deal adequately with the effects. In fact, Mr. MacMurchy, Minister of Agriculture of Saskatchewan said, "High interest rates for farmers can be traced directly to the economic mismanagement by the federal government."

It was suggested the option of lower interest and lower exchange rates on our dollar should be considered as an alternative to the present situation. Considering the difficulties our farmers are in, this option should receive serious consideration by the federal government.

On the whole, I believe this was a productive meeting. I believe we will see some positive effects over both the long term and the short term.



Mr. Smith: Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the Minister of Health arising out of the point of privilege raised by my colleague the member for Parkdale (Mr. Ruprecht). Could the Minister of Health allow himself a few moments for some second thoughts on the totally irresponsible answer he gave to that point of privilege? Reading, as I shall, from this bulletin that was sent to administrators of all provincial psychiatric hospitals by Mr. Cardiff, acting director of the psychiatric hospitals branch, it says --

Mr. Foulds: Is this a question?

Mr. Smith: Yes, this is an important question, I will tell the member for Port Arthur.

It says: "As a general rule, tours should only be laid on for individuals or groups who will benefit directly, e.g., visiting professors or those having proper authority, e.g., accreditation or parliamentary appointed committees. Visits by politicians, regardless of party, should not be permitted unless approved by the minister's office through the branch."

Although presumably those who are members of cabinet are statesmen and the rest of us are politicians, given that all of us have a responsibility to the public, is it the minister's view we should not be allowed to inspect public institutions as they are, without forewarning them by going through the Ministry of Health? Is it his view we should not be allowed to drop in on reformatories, detention centres, jails, hospitals, or schools for that matter, to find out how things are being operated, that we as elected members should have to get permission and tip off the ministry involved before we are allowed to visit?

Hon. Mr. Timbrell: No, Mr. Speaker. It has always been my concern that the interests of the patients come first. I would tell the honourable member I do not visit any institutions without arranging it beforehand so that I do not inconvenience patients, staff or whoever.

By the way, I also make it a point that when I am visiting institutions from time to time, if the media are there, I specifically tell them they are not to take pictures of patients, in order to protect their confidentiality and interest.

So, with respect, Mr. Speaker, I think the member is blowing it out of all proportion.

2:30 p.m.

Mr. Smith: Supplementary: It would appear the only person who is losing his sense of proportion here is the minister. No one is talking about taking pictures of patients -- and I, as a psychiatrist, would certainly be aware of the difficulties there -- but surely the elected representatives of the people, the members here in Her Majesty's government and loyal opposition, have every right to investigate from time to time to see that there are no conditions of cruelty and no unusual problems emerging in certain situations in prisons and so on.

That is not something that has never happened; that is not in the realm of speculation. Those things happen. Surely the minister would agree that we in this House have every right to visit parliamentary public institutions to see the kinds of conditions that exist there, without having to go through the minister. Will the minister rescind this order immediately?

Hon. Mr. Timbrell: Mr. Speaker, I do not think it is unreasonable for anybody to contact the administrator -- in this case, the minister's office.

Mr. Smith: We are elected here; we are not just anybody.

Hon. Mr. Timbrell: No, Mr. Speaker, I am well aware of that. With respect, I think the Leader of the Opposition is making much more of it than was ever intended. Surely, as a practising psychiatrist, he would acknowledge it is only appropriate to give some notice to the clinical staff and others.

Mr. Smith: Not to the minister.

Hon. Mr. Timbrell: The minister is ultimately responsible for the system. With respect, the Leader of the Opposition is being even more silly than usual.

Mr. Ruprecht: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: This is one of the most ridiculous things that I have heard in my two years of public life. Why has the minister or his staff told the public relations officer at that institution -- never mind the politicians; there has been a direct order given to the public relations officer at that institution -- not only to be tight-lipped but not to talk to anybody about what goes on inside, including the members on both sides of the House or anybody on the outside? Why has that taken place through his ministry?

Hon. Mr. Timbrell: Mr. Speaker, I am not sure it has. Certainly to my knowledge nobody in the minister's office or in a ministry branch has made any such statement. I am not sure what has transpired there, whether the administrator has made some changes in the operation of the facility, for which he is fully responsible to the branch and the ministry. He has only been there a short while. I am sure as a new person he would want to make some changes. That may be one of them, I do not know.

My understanding is that he has indicated he wants inquiries to go through him and that's fine. He is the person who is the chief administrative officer for that facility.

Mr. Breaugh: Mr. Speaker, if I may just correct the record, the members of this House do have a legal right to visit those institutions and I do not think that will be a problem. When I was health critic for this party, there was never any difficulty in visiting any hospital in the province; there was never any difficulty in getting all kinds of documentation from people who were there or in soliciting opinions from them. In fact, quite the contrary; we often had to ask them to stop the paper flow.

Hon. Mr. Timbrell: I am pleased to have that unsolicited testimony. I certainly would never countenance refusing admission to MPPs or refusing their rights. Mr. Speaker, I think you will find in the bylaws and manuals of administration of virtually every hospital in this province -- and I am not just talking about the ones we administer; I am talking about the ones that are administered by community boards -- a policy that the patients and staff are not going to be interrupted without some notice that someone is coming.

I have never and will never deny the rights of the members of this House to information and access. I think that has been attested to in an unsolicited fashion by the member opposite.


Mr. Smith: Mr. Speaker, I would like to direct a question to the Solicitor General. It is now some three months since the Metropolitan Toronto police department, in numbers of about 200, raided some bathhouses in Toronto. We have all been waiting to see the sum total of the charges which would be laid as a result of that rather large and serious effort at law enforcement.

Given that the Barracks case is still pending and the only charges laid so far have to do with whether the bathhouses were bawdy houses within the meaning of the law and whether, as a result of that, the money collected was illegally collected, and given that that case is still pending, does the Solicitor General expect any further charges will be laid which might be serious enough to justify the use of some 200 policemen on these raids?

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: There are a number of charges before the courts, Mr. Speaker. I would be quite happy to advise our colleagues in the Legislature as to the precise number and the nature of these charges when I have had an opportunity to refresh my own memory. But I would like to say that there are a large number, including, as I recall, some additional charges relating to criminal conspiracy that were laid just within the past two or three weeks. I am sure the Leader of the Opposition is aware of that fact.

In my view, the police were quite justified in using the number of officers that were employed in order to carry out a raid that was conducted in a fairly orderly fashion with a minimum, if not almost a total absence, of physical confrontation. The result of the employment of that number of officers at the scene meant that the vast majority of the accused could be released right at the scene rather than having to be put to the inconvenience of being taken to a police station and processed in the normal way.

I am well aware that the number of officers used has created the perception in some corridors of an overreaction on the part of the police in respect to the specific activity that was carried on. I would simply ask members of the Legislature as well as the public as a whole not to make any prejudgement in this matter, certainly not the judgement that is often made on the basis of some media reports, but simply to await the outcome of the disposition of these trials.

I am satisfied that the members, having had the benefit of this additional information, will be somewhat less concerned as to what occurred on that occasion. Given the fact that there are a number of charges before the courts, I am, of course, under some constraint in relation to the details of these cases.

Mr. Smith: By way of supplementary, since the minister must surely know that very few citizens of this province are likely to believe that the reason 200 police were used was primarily for the convenience of the found-ins, which seems to be the explanation the minister is giving; and since the same charges that have been laid could obviously have been laid if a very small number of police had simply gone in and seized the books and arrested the owners of these establishments; and given that this was the largest use and deployment of Metro police personnel that anyone can remember and the largest incident since the War Measures Act, can the minister say that he is truly satisfied in his own mind that this was a reasonable use of Metro police personnel in the numbers involved?

How is the minister proposing that the public receive an accountability for this decision since the police commission, which ought to be the body that holds the police accountable for these decisions, seems to prefer a role largely as the public relations arm of the police and since there has been no other body set up which can come to a conclusion on this matter?

2:40 p.m.

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: Mr. Speaker, there are a number of suggestions and statements contained in this supplementary question that I simply do not accept as being accurate. I reiterate what I stated in response to the first question, that a number of these cases are before the courts and, in fairness to the individuals accused, I do not think it would be useful to discuss the matter further at this time.

The Solicitor General's estimates are starting next week. If the member wants to pursue some discussion with respect to police methods generally, not concentrating on what may be evidence adduced in court in this particular case, of course we will be very happy to pursue such a discussion.

Mr. Breaugh: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: I would like to ask the minister, is it true that the size, the timing and the very nature of the raids themselves were the subject of discussions within the Attorney General's office and that the whole nature of the raids was decided within his ministry?

Hon. Mr. McMurtry: No. I am very happy to address that question because I am very disturbed by some of the totally irresponsible statements that have been made. I realize some of these statements were made in the heat of an election campaign, but I am rather distressed that some statements, which have been reported to me since that interesting and useful consultation with the people of Ontario, are allegations that this raid was somehow politically motivated. I want to make it very clear that I regard that allegation as nothing less than outrageous and completely without any foundation.

As I have said before, the police do not consult the Ministry of the Attorney General with respect to their day-to-day operations. There was no one within the ministry at 18 King Street East who actually was aware of the raid in advance and no one in the crown law office. I understand an assistant crown attorney in the York crown attorney's office was consulted with respect to some aspects of the matter. Apart from that, we had no prior knowledge whatsoever.


Mr. Cassidy: Mr. Speaker, I have a new question for the Minister of Agriculture and Food arising out of his statement today that the government intends to establish a committee to review the operations of Ontario farmers whose creditors are about to call their loans.

Would the minister tell us what all the announcements he has made today will do in the particular case of Henry Friesen, who is a hog farmer in Mildmay, Bruce county, who raises 1,500 pigs a year? His debts now exceed $200,000, which debts include $125,000 to the Bank of Montreal at two per cent over prime and $50,000 to the Federal Business Development Bank in Owen Sound at three per cent over prime.

His operations have now been seized and are about to be sold, both the machinery and the livestock, because of his inability to meet all the interest rates that have grown so rapidly over the course of the last year. After taking away all the rhetoric and all the promises of consideration in future meetings, what specifically has the minister to offer in order to keep farmers like Henry Friesen in business providing food for the people of Ontario?

Hon. Mr. Henderson: Mr. Speaker, the honourable member does not give me the age of this individual, but if he remembers my statement today, it suggested the young farmer credit loan, available through my ministry.


Hon. Mr. Henderson: Apparently, the members opposite are not interested, Mr. Speaker, in learning the real problems of the real farmers. If they would listen, they would understand. Do they want the answer?

The announcement today will allow this farmer, if he is under 35, to have his debts consolidated if the committee recommends they should be and if the bank will carry on. The province will put forth a guarantee of one per cent above prime. However, it has to meet the criteria of the committee that will investigate it.

Second, the announcement today tells this House that four weeks from the day the federal government states what the pig price was for the last six months -- and Mr. Whelan left us with the impression that will be any day -- our sow-weaner program will go into effect and he will receive a cheque from them. We expect the announcement will be made any day and we say the payout will be in the middle of June. If he has a prime credit loan -- I do not know whether he has or not -- Mr. Whelan made it quite clear they are ready to look at that as a consolidation and incorporate it under the Farm Credit Act.

This man is one who might well qualify for all the programs I announced today. If the member would send over the details, I would turn it over to the committee that is going to look into this.

Mr. Cassidy: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: Given the fact that Mr. Friesen is a man of about 45 -- old enough to have a 19-year-old daughter and 16-year-old son -- he is obviously not going to qualify for credit which may be available to young farmers. This is a typical, average Ontario farmer, a man who has had his farm for 10 years, who now finds the interest payments on his debts exceed his gross income from farming because of the increase in interest rates over the course of the past year. What does the government intend to do in order to ensure that Mr. Friesen now can get affordable interest rates?

He believes if he could have a long-term loan at 14 per cent he can pull his operation around. What does the government intend to do in order to ensure long-term stability to a farmer like Henry Friesen? How can we expect to have adequate supplies of pork at prices that consumers can afford if farmers like Mr. Friesen are being driven out of business every week in the province?

Hon. Mr. Henderson: Mr. Speaker, the honourable member touched on the genuine problem. The price of pork is not high enough to give this man the return he needs. The consumer is getting very cheap food at a cost to farmers like this. Apparently, the leader of the New Democratic Party does not understand what the Farm Credit Corporation is. He does not understand that Mr. Whelan assured me that farmers such as this will get every consideration possible if it is brought to their attention.

Mr. Riddell: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: When does the minister expect to have this committee in place? I trust it is following the recommendation of the Canadian Federation of Agriculture for a review agency since that is really what this government is going to set up. Who will comprise the membership of the committee? What does he intend to do about stalling any more foreclosures and bankruptcies until this committee has a chance to study each individual case?

Hon. Mr. Henderson: The chairman of this committee is Mr. Norman Watson from my department. The members will meet tomorrow morning if need be. All we need are the cases.

Mr. Cassidy: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: Will the minister assure the House there will be no bankruptcies and there will be no foreclosures by banks on farmers in this situation until the measures he has talked about in this House can come into being? It has happened in the past that government in this province has acted to stop the process of foreclosure. Will the minister do it now for Mr. Friesen and the hundreds of other farmers who are in the same situation in the province today?

Hon. Mr. Henderson: Mr. Speaker, the honourable member knows his request is not possible. We are a free enterprise government. We believe the individuals out there have the right. On Monday of this week I wrote to all the banks that have a licence to operate in Ontario. I pointed out to them my plans for the committee. I have asked them to please try to help if at all possible. I have requested this of the banks.

2:50 p.m.


Mr. Cassidy: Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the Treasurer with respect to the user fee policy of the government and the impact those user fees, which are determined by the Treasurer and the government, are having on families across the province.

I would like to draw to the Treasurer's attention the case of Gus Benedetti of Garson in the riding of my colleague the member for Sudbury East (Mr. Martel). Mr. Benedetti has one child still at home. He has an annual income of $16,000. He is being billed by the Treasurer of Ontario and the Ministry of Health for $6,490.17 as a user fee towards maintaining his wife in a home for special care.

Is it the policy of the government that user fees should be set so high they will take 40 per cent of an income as modest as Mr. Benedetti's? Will the Treasurer assure the House that where there are user fees at that unconscionable level, he will act in his budget to bring them down, if not to eliminate them?

Hon. F. S. Miller: Mr. Speaker, I will redirect that question to the Minister of Health.

Hon. Mr. Timbrell: Mr. Speaker, I will be glad to look at the individual case. Was this in a chronic care facility?

Mr. Cassidy: A home for special care.

Hon. Mr. Timbrell: It is a nursing home in other words. I will look at that individual case. The member has put the name on the record. I will take it as notice and give an answer tomorrow or at the first of the week.

Mr. Cassidy: If I can redirect back to the Treasurer, the issue is not just Mr. Benedetti, it is hundreds or thousands of other people across the province in similar situations.

When people like Mr. Benedetti have to pay user fees, that is unfair taxation. Since the provincial contribution for health and for post-secondary education has now fallen below what it is taking from people across the province in the form of user fees, will the minister agree that those user fee plans are unfair taxation and will he agree there will be no increases in user fees when the budget comes down next week?

Hon. F. S. Miller: No, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Peterson: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: Given the fact that Ontario health insurance plan charges have increased by some 82 per cent since 1976 at the average rate of 16 per cent a year, far above the rate of inflation, will the Treasurer assure this House he will not increase OHIP fees in the next budget and that any increases in taxation will come through the progressive system, paid by those people most able to afford it?

Hon. F. S. Miller: No, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Wildman: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: Will the Treasurer confirm that this province is now dependent to the level of about 20 per cent for funding through user fees, whereas the average across the country is about six per cent? How can he justify that kind of level? How can he justify the difference?

Hon. F. S. Miller: Mr. Speaker, I do not know what figures the honourable member is using.


Mr. Sargent: Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the Premier. The federal Minister of Agriculture, Mr. Whelan, announced last night he has approached the Canadian Bankers Association to have the major banks set up a moratorium program on mortgage interest rates to keep thousands of farmers and producers from going under.

In view of the fact that thousands of small businessmen are facing foreclosure because of high bank profits and interest rates and that thousands of Ontario home owners are losing their homes because of the like policies of the chartered banks, and in view of the fact that the Premier has been asking us in the opposition to give him something constructive, and not to criticize him, I would like to ask the Premier if he would work with the Ontario Federation of Agriculture, with all our co-operation, and with the chambers of commerce, for the small businessmen and for the home owners, for the home owners' associations, for the people whose mortgages are foreclosing, to do a crash program to assemble all of the properties available in all these three areas in Ontario, to take a major step not for mankind but for the people of Ontario, to protect the equity of these people and to get this thing in motion?

I suggest he consider setting a moratorium program of maybe $500 million as a target to make sure that the banks cannot force these people into foreclosure in all these areas. In today's Owen Sound Sun Times we have two pages of articles on what is happening to our farmers and to our small businessmen. It is time that we face it and, with the greatest respect, the time is now and not when this minister gets up and gives us these fairy tales he is telling us day after day.

Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, I think the honourable member will understand when I suggest, with respect, that the Minister of Agriculture and Food (Mr. Henderson) is not giving anyone any fairy tales. No one is minimizing the problem as it relates to the small business community, the farm community and to many people in society with respect to high interest rates. I am not going to go through the litany this afternoon of reminding the member that this is a national policy. I know the reasons they give, the rationales they develop; but I think it is fair to state that this government is always prepared to co-operate with the government of Canada in any program that creates solutions to problems.

I have pointed out to members of this House that I do not believe any provincial jurisdiction can deal with the question of interest rates on a comprehensive basis. I think that is a matter of national responsibility. The Minister of Agriculture and Food has met with the federal minister. The federal minister, as I read the news reports --

Mr. Sargent: He carries a lot of weight down there.

Hon. Mr. Davis: I would say to the honourable member that the Minister of Agriculture and Food in this province does carry a lot of weight in terms of his point of view. I would say to the member for Huron-Middlesex (Mr. Riddell) there are very few people more knowledgeable in the field of agriculture than the Minister of Agriculture and Food in this province. I obviously include the member for Huron-Middlesex when I make that sort of analysis. He will understand if I rely more heavily on the minister's advice than his, (a) because he is more objective, (b) because he knows more about it, and (c) because he is more talented. The member would not be surprised if I were to do that, would he?


Hon. Mr. Davis: That does not come as a shock to him.

I notice in Mr. Whelan's observations he did zero in on the banks, which may or may not be appropriate, and laid some of the onus as it relates to the cattle industry on the individual farmers themselves and the necessity to create a marketing board.

I think it is fair to state that the Treasurer (Mr. F. S. Miller) and the Minister of Agriculture and Food met with the federation of agriculture of this province this morning. We are conducting these meetings and having these discussions. As a government, on any national program we are certainly prepared to sit down and discuss with the government of Canada whatever plans it might have to deal with the situation.

I want it clearly understood that as a government we do understand it, we appreciate it and we are concerned about it. At the same time, I am not going to lead anyone astray and suggest that any provincial jurisdiction can on a comprehensive basis solve the problem of interest rates. They are set by the Bank of Canada; we do not do it.

Mr. Sargent: Does the Premier know many of our farmers are leaving for Alberta? One of them is quoted as saying, "Ontario politicians are about as reliable as a baby's ass." He is at the point where he does not trust this government. The farmers do not trust them, the people who own homes and the small businessmen do not trust them.

3 p.m.

Mr. Speaker: Do you have a question?

Mr. Sargent: The question I want to ask is this: This man says he is going to Alberta where he can get all the money he needs for agriculture at nine per cent. Can the Premier tell me why, in this great, rich province, he cannot give nine per cent loans to farmers as they can in Alberta?

Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, I think it is fairly obvious to the honourable member that our sister province of Alberta does have access to certain funds not enjoyed by any other province in Canada at this moment.

Mr. Martel: You blew it over the years. We didn't use nickel to our advantage; we gave it away.

Hon. Mr. Davis: With great respect, I am not going to get into a debate with the member for Sudbury East, whose knowledge of farming is zip.

Mr. Martel: I am not talking about farming; I am talking about other things.

Mr. Speaker: Order.

Hon. Mr. Davis: I have to tell the member that what he knows about agriculture he could put into the little finger of his hand. He just does not know the first thing about it and he never will.

Mr. Martel: That is right, and I agree with that, but what the Premier knows about mining is about the same amount.

Mr. Speaker: Order.

Hon. Mr. Davis: I don't see a farm member in that whole caucus of yours.

Mr. Martel: We are talking about a resource policy.

Hon. Mr. Davis: The member is not a farm member. He holds up his hand over there. What does he want to do? Leave the room? There are some days when I think he should.

Mr. Speaker: Order.


Mr. Speaker: Order. Just ignore the interruptions, interjections and answer the question.

Hon. Mr. Davis: I will do my very best to ignore those enlightened, constructive interjections from members of the New Democratic Party who are so knowledgeable in the agricultural industry. I will certainly do my best.


Hon. Mr. Davis: But, Mr. Speaker, they are still trying to interrupt me.

I think the reasons that one or two provinces, particularly Alberta, are prepared, or are in the position to offer certain inducements, are there and are kind of obvious. I think I might caution that person -- from me with my modest knowledge of the agricultural industry -- that if he is going into the cattle business, perhaps the availability of lower interest money, even in Alberta, may not solve the problem. I still have a few farmers in my own constituency, I would remind the member for Grey-Bruce.

I think it is fair to state that while some farmers who are dealing in cash crops or in milk, for instance, are feeling the pressure of the rates because of the marketing systems, they are able to pass on a certain amount of increased cost to the consumer, which is fair. What has happened in the cattle business is that for their own reasons -- and I know some of them; they are very independent people -- they have been reluctant to move to a marketing board. This is one area where I tend to agree with the federal Minister of Agriculture -- I do not always agree with him -- when he says that in the cattle industry part of the problem lies in the fact that they have not created a marketing board where they would be in a better position in terms of supply and of the end price for their product.

I think a farmer moving to Alberta, entertaining the thought of going into the cattle industry, would be well advised to check just what is the export situation, what the price will be per pound or per hundredweight. He may find that even the nine per cent money does not make it that attractive.

Mr. Nixon: Supplementary: Would the minister not see what an injustice it is in the eyes of the farmers of Ontario, when they look at their principal competitors, not in Alberta but in Quebec, which province is no more prosperous than we are, but which definitely does have programs which at least move in some part to meet this situation, and particularly when they remember that this government, under different political circumstances, had a junior farmer establishment loan and a specific program to assist with interest rates? While accepting that the primary responsibility is at the federal level, would the Premier not see how difficult it is for the farmers, who are reasonable people and taxpayers too, to accept what he and the Minister of Agriculture and Food say, which is that we can do nothing because it is all federal?

Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, I think we have demonstrated in the past that on the short-term basis we have not only been sympathetic to but we have met the needs of the farm community. We could very easily engage in comparisons. I will not get into what some might argue is the source of funding by way of equalization in Quebec and how that money may find its way to the farmers of Quebec.

No, I am not going to raise that. I am saying to the honourable member that I understand it is difficult for our farmers to comprehend the differences in programs existing within individual provincial jurisdictions, and I am not saying, neither is the Minister of Agriculture and Food saying, that we are washing our hands of it. That is not true. There would be no point in setting up these committees and having the meetings that the minister and the Treasurer (Mr. F. S. Miller) are having with the Ontario Federation of Agriculture at this moment. What I do not want to do is lead anyone astray and say there is any easy solution, not just for the farm community but for many people when it comes to the question of interest rates.

I am not going to repeat what I have said except to remind the honourable member that the interest rate policy is set by the national government; I will not even mention the fact that it is a Liberal national government. It is set by them, not by the provinces.

Mr. Riddell: On a point of privilege, Mr. Speaker: In the Premier's response he chose to make a comparison between my experience, talents and knowledge of agriculture and those of the Minister of Agriculture and Food. To the best of my knowledge I do not ever recall my leader receiving letters from farmers asking for my resignation as the agriculture critic for the Liberal Party. I wonder whether the Premier would comment on the letters he has received about his minister, and what the federation thinks about that minister. That speaks for his talent, that speaks for his knowledge, that speaks for his education.

Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, I am delighted to reply to that very cynical and small observation from the member for Huron-Middlesex. His leader has called for the resignation of just about every minister of the crown. He had an opportunity to persuade the people of Ontario as to the validity of his position, the programs he enunciated, the leadership he was prepared to provide to the people of Ontario on March 19, and they rejected him and his party categorically. I have not had any letters.

Mr. Smith: Nyea, nyea; n-y-e-a.

Hon. Mr. Davis: The Leader of the Opposition is the one who says "Nyea, nyea." His observations probably never saw the record of Hansard. When he referred to this distinguished group of new members as being representative of the oldest profession in the world it demonstrated to me just how cynical he is in terms of political leadership.

To answer the honourable member's question, I do not know what letters --

Mr. Sargent: Mr. Speaker, on a point of privilege.

Hon. Mr. Davis: No, no. Let me finish. I am on a point of privilege.

Mr. Sargent: That is an insult to women.

Mr. Speaker: Order, order.

Hon. Mr. Davis: He tried to insult them, but they are not that easily insulted; they are Tories.

In reply to the honourable member, I do not know what letters his leader has had about his performance. I have had certain communications in terms of the Minister of Agriculture and Food; I have had communications about many people. I would only say that my constituency is relatively typical, and I have had no representations about the honourable member opposite and his performance in the House because they do not know he exists.


Mr. Laughren: Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the Minister of Natural Resources.


Mr. Speaker: Order, please. Order.

Mr. Laughren: You are allowing it to happen, if I might say so, Mr. Speaker.

May we assume that the minister agrees with the guidelines sent out by his predecessor to all his regional directors dealing with Indian matters in Ontario? In particular, does he agree with guideline number four, which states: "It is the policy of the Ministry of Natural Resources that Ontario conservation officers will not enter an Indian reserve in Ontario to enforce the Fisheries Act and/or the Migratory Birds Convention Act and the regulations made under these statutes without the agreement of the chief or the approval of the Minister of Natural Resources"?

If the Minister of Natural Resources does agree with that guideline, sent out under his predecessor's name, could he explain how it is that at 5:30 a.m. on the morning of May 8, personnel of the Ministry of Natural Resources and the Ontario Provincial Police raided the Moraviantown Indian reserve east of Chatham, and why this was done without the approval or invitation of the chief of that particular band? Does that mean the minister gave his personal approval for that raid?

3:10 p.m.

Hon. Mr. Pope: Mr. Speaker, the answer is that I authorized the issuance of search warrants based on information available to me and to the officers of the crown leading us to believe there was a breach of the laws of Ontario.

Mr. Laughren: That is very interesting. Given the very volatile situation that exists on that particular reserve, does the minister think it was appropriate -- from reports I have received -- that there were on that raid as many as nine cars, 20 Ministry of Natural Resources personnel and 12 OPP officers, some carrying shotguns? Does he really think that is the appropriate way to investigate a possible infraction of the Fisheries Act? Does he not think he owes an apology to the people on that Indian reserve for the bizarre and dangerous behaviour of his people and of the Ontario Provincial Police?

Hon. Mr. Pope: With all respect to the honourable member, he does not know all the facts of the situation that existed. Those facts will come to light during the course of the legal proceedings that are about to take place. I would have to say I have confidence that the members of the Ontario Provincial Police and the employees of my ministry, all of whom are experienced in these matters, felt there was enough of a problem with respect to a breach of the laws of the province to take the actions they did, and I support their actions fully.


Mr. Pollock: Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the Minister of the Environment. Is the minister aware that the Atomic Energy Control Board of Canada is taking contaminated soil from the Toronto area and dumping it in my riding?

Hon. Mr. Norton: Mr. Speaker, I can assure the member that it is certainly not a decision of the province to do anything like that in his riding.

I am aware that about the sixth of this month the chairman of the AECB announced the decision to transfer some contaminated soil from the suburban Scarborough area to a mine site in the Bancroft area and deposit the soil on the tailings from a mining operation in that area. That decision is clearly within the jurisdiction of the federal government and the AECB.

I might also say to the honourable member that on the basis of the information I have, it would appear to be a safe decision. The level of contamination in the soil in Scarborough is very low, and the information given to me following some inquiries I have made is that the transference of that soil to the site and the placing of it on the tailings would have the effect of reducing the ambient radiation in that immediate area because of the much lower level of contamination in that particular soil in comparison with the tailings.

I realize there has been expression of concern in that area about whether this might in some way represent the identification of that mine site as a dump site for radioactive substances. I can assure the honourable member that certainly nothing I have seen or heard would in any way indicate it is more than simply a single isolated decision with respect to the disposal of this contaminated soil at this time.

Mr. Pollock: Supplementary: I would just like to ask the Minister of the Environment, if he feels it is safe, why do they not leave it in Toronto?

Hon. Mr. Norton: Mr. Speaker, I want to make it clear it is not my decision, but I do think, in view of the evidence I have seen, it is probably a correct decision. There has certainly been concern expressed about the safety of the level of radioactivity in the soil. It has been suggested that, over any kind of short-term exposure, it is probably not hazardous at all. In its present location it happens to be in a residential area; the movement of it to a more isolated area in terms of the specific tailing site and its deposit upon tailings that are at present more highly radioactive will improve the ambient radioactivity in that particular tailings area. It should result in an improvement as opposed to an increased hazard in that community.

Mr. O'Neil: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: As that material would likely have had to pass through my riding -- and I know the minister would never have put it into a Liberal riding -- may I ask the minister if he consulted with the member at any time to let him know it was going to be dumped there without his approval?

Hon. Mr. Norton: Mr. Speaker, I had nothing to do with the decision itself. As a matter of fact, the only knowledge I have of the decision is that I have been advised by the AECB that it was taken. It is also my understanding that none of it has been transferred as yet. I believe there is a tendering process under way through the AECB with respect to the removal and the transfer of that material. That is something entirely under the control of the AECB.


Mr. O'Neil: Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the Minister of Industry and Tourism that pertains to the cost to tourists of dining out in Ontario. May I ask the minister what tourism initiatives he might be proposing to the Treasurer (Mr. F. S. Miller) for the 1981 budget? Has he considered suggesting to the Treasurer that the sales tax on meals be brought into line with all other taxable items by reducing that tax from 10 per cent to seven per cent, a move that I believe always had the support of his predecessors in that ministry?

Hon. Mr. Grossman: Mr. Speaker, I do not think there is a member of this House who has a better understanding of the tourism industry or cares more about it than the Treasurer of this province. He has continued to reflect that in all his budgets. Look at the history of all the budgets this Treasurer has brought in. As the honourable member knows even from his early discussions with the tourism industry, to have this Treasurer in this job is one of the best things that ever has happened to the tourism industry.

Having had discussions with the Treasurer, I am confident he will show his usual sensitivity to the tourism industry and treat it equitably, notwithstanding his special interest in that area.

Mr. O'Neil: I take it then the minister has made that suggestion. I would also ask whether the minister would consider suggesting altering the 50:50 food-to-liquor ratio that restaurants must adhere to in order to reflect more adequately the constant increases in prices that the Liquor Control Board of Ontario sets on its products.

Hon. Mr. Grossman: If that is the position of the Liberal Party, perhaps the critic for Consumer and Commercial Relations will state that as the policy of the Liberal Party. I can only say the policy on this side of the House is always reflected by the minister responsible and we heartily agree with that position.

I can assure the member -- and his seatmate will verify this I am sure -- that as Minister of Tourism I have had a great deal of response on tourism matters from all my colleagues. One need only look at the budget allocations and the budgets themselves over the past three years in terms of the sympathy and great support the tourism industry has had, not just from this minister but from all the ministers sitting on this side of the House. If I continue to get that sort of response on all the input I have, I will continue to be delighted, as will the tourism industry.


Hon. Miss Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, it is as Minister of Colleges and Universities that I rise to respond to a question raised by the leader of the official opposition on Tuesday. That question was: "Is she aware that 675 applications were received at Algonquin College in Ottawa for 130 positions, that 530 of the people were found to qualify and, after that, the choice was made simply by random computer selection?"

3:20 p.m.

The facts in the case are these: At Ottawa there are 130 places in the city of Ottawa English-language nursing program. For those places this year, 681 applications were received of which 661 were from Ontario. The applicants who met the basic academic qualifications numbered 525. Of those, 439 pursued the procedure for evaluation of eligibility to the program, which is carried out by instructors and administrators. It is estimated, because that assessment is not as yet completed, that of the 439, 260 will meet the nursing program requirements for the 130 places available.

Those 525 are not subjected, nor are the 439, to random selection. There is a process of evaluation which is carried out first, to the utmost of the capability of those involved in assessment, and only then, when there are more applicants than there are places available, is that selection process used for fairness to all.

Mr. Smith: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: Given that there are at least four community colleges that introduced the process of random selection at some point during the proceedings -- the minister likes to say that is at the end, but to get from 260 to 130 means 130 people are going to be rejected on the basis that they held the wrong lottery ticket -- therefore I would ask the minister: is she prepared to instruct these colleges and universities, or anybody engaging in this lottery ticket method of choosing people, to set that aside and to make what are admittedly difficult decisions, but to try to choose the best people they can for the jobs at hand and the spaces at hand?

If not, is she prepared to introduce the lottery ticket system in the schools of medicine and law and dentistry as well, because they also have a much larger number of applicants than they have places available?

Hon. Miss Stephenson: It is perfectly obvious that the honourable member refuses to understand the selection process does move to the level of selection of the best of the applicants. As the member knows, there are always more applicants than there are places in limited-space courses such as nursing, medicine, law and others, and they cannot all be accommodated. We are not attempting to produce an elitist situation at the community college level, but we are attempting to ensure that the highest possible qualifications for the level of nursing being taught at those institutions is an important part of the assessment procedure of all applicants. All those who feel they are being disadvantaged by this system have the option of applying to schools of nursing for the baccalaureate program at universities if they wish to do so.


Mr. Samis: Mr. Speaker, I have a question of the Minister of Transportation and Communications. First of all, in view of the fact that the international bridges at Cornwall and Prescott have been closed for the transportation of nuclear waste from Chalk River, could the minister inform the House what discussions he has had with the Atomic Energy Control Board regarding alternative routes in Ontario?

Hon. Mr. Snow: Mr. Speaker, personally I have had no correspondence or discussions with the AECB, which is, of course, a federal body; we have not heard from them at my level. Whether my staff had any discussions with them or not, I will check and find out. The international bridges the member refers to are under the federal jurisdiction as well.

Mr. Samis: Could the minister confirm certain rumours that a shipment of radioactive fuel rods will take place along Highway 17 tomorrow; could he tell us what precautions may have been taken, and is he aware of the resolution passed by the Sudbury regional council strongly opposing the transportation of nuclear waste material across its regional boundaries?

Hon. Mr. Snow: Mr. Speaker, I am not aware of the rumour the honourable member talks about. I will read Hansard and get the details and check into it.

Mr. Newman: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: Will the minister ask the federal authorities to notify his ministry every time any nuclear wastes are being transported from the United States through Canada to other parts of the US?

Hon. Mr. Snow: Mr. Speaker, I do not think that question has any relativity to the other question because we were not talking about nuclear waste, as I understand it. We were talking about uranium rods, which are a lot different from nuclear waste, and we were not talking about transporting it in the US.


Mr. Mancini: I would like to direct a question to the Minister of Transportation and Communications, Mr. Speaker. Can the minister indicate whether he is aware of any plans by Via Rail to construct a new train terminal building in the city of Windsor for passenger service? If so, could the minister inform the House how these plans coincide with the report of the Ontario Task Force on Rail Policy?

Hon. Mr. Snow: Mr. Speaker, I am not aware of any plans of Via Rail to do anything to its station in Windsor. Certainly I have not been notified about it. I hope Via Rail is going to do something. We have been encouraging Via Rail and the federal government to improve passenger transportation facilities in the Quebec City-Windsor corridor for a number of years. If they are doing that I am more than happy.

Mr. Mancini: I am shocked the Minister of Transportation and Communications for Ontario is not aware Via Rail is proposing a new terminal building for Windsor. Will the ministry involve itself in any of the preliminary discussions with Via Rail as to the location of this new site and whether it will simply be a train station or a multitransportation terminal?

Furthermore, since the ministry's new-found interest in rail policy has been documented in a $300,000 study, will the ministry be prepared to assist Windsor in any expenditures the city may have to undertake in order to have this new transportation terminal become a reality?

Hon. Mr. Snow: First of all, Mr. Speaker, I regret very much the honourable member is shocked that I did not know what Via Rail was doing. I have to remind him Via Rail is not a responsibility of my ministry and Via Rail has no responsibility to inform me of its day-to-day operating plans. However, on numerous occasions we have met and --

Mr. T. P. Reid: We have a million-dollar study on rail --


Mr. Speaker: Order.

Hon. Mr. Snow: The honourable member for Rainy River has his facts all wrong, as he usually does.

There have been discussions on situations where we have encouraged the development of multimodal terminals where railway stations, bus stations and what not can be put together in one facility. This I would encourage and I would be quite prepared to talk to the city of Windsor about it.

On the other hand, I am sure the member from that area is aware the Windsor Transit Commission, which operates transit in the Windsor area, is a municipal system. If the transit authorities wish to involve themselves in a bus terminal, the normal procedure would be for them to apply to my ministry for a capital contribution to it, as it is a routine part of our transit operation.

I do not know what the honourable member is talking about -- he has not really told me -- but if he is referring to an intercity bus terminal, that is in the private sector and I would suggest the private bus companies be involved in the discussions.

3:30 p.m.



Mr. Kerr from the standing committee on procedural affairs presented the committee's report on agencies, boards and commissions, and moved its adoption.

Mr. Kerr: Mr. Speaker, this report was completed by the previous standing procedural affairs committee, the chairman of which did not really have the opportunity to present the report to this House. It is now being presented for future consideration and debate by the members.

On motion by Mr. Kerr, the debate was adjourned.



Hon. Mr. Wells moved that notwithstanding standing order 33(a) as adopted March 13, 1980, the House will take into consideration, at separate sittings on dates to be announced later by the government House Leader, the following two sessional papers: 1. Sessional paper 57, draft final report, select committee on plant shutdowns and employee adjustment, January 1981, tabled May 11, 1981; 2. Sessional paper 62, standing committee on public accounts, final report, December 1980, tabled May 14, 1981.

Motion agreed to.


Hon. Mr. Wells moved that notwithstanding the standing orders and practices of the House, the standing committee on administration of justice report on the Ontario Housing Corporation and local housing authorities of the Thirty-First Parliament, dated February 1981 and tabled April 21, 1981, be placed on the Order Paper for adoption, to be called for debate under standing order 30(c).

Motion agreed to.


Hon. Mr. Wells moved that the Workmen's Compensation Board annual report for 1979 be referred to the standing committee on social development for consideration starting June 1, 1981, and such consideration not to exceed three sittings.

Motion agreed to.



Hon. Mr. Bennett moved first reading of Bill 67, An Act to establish the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing.

Motion agreed to.

Hon. Mr. Bennett: Mr. Speaker, the purpose of the bill is to establish the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing by bringing together the municipal affairs and also the municipal law areas at present in the Ministry of Intergovernmental Affairs, and the community planning wing, the community development wing and the land development wing in the Ontario Housing Corporation at present in the Ministry of Housing.

The new minister will be responsible for the policies and programs of the government of Ontario in relation to municipal affairs, including the co-ordination of programs and financial assistance to municipalities, community planning, community development, the maintenance and improvement of the built environment, land development, housing and related matters.


Hon. Mr. Wells: Before the orders of the day, pursuant to the standing orders, I would like to indicate to the House the sequence of estimates and hours agreed to by the House leaders. This is not the complete list, but it is sufficient to take us to our summer adjournment, I believe, at which time I will indicate the order for the remaining ministries.

In the committee of supply in this House, estimates are to be taken in the order shown as follows: Ministry of Government Services, four hours; Management Board, three hours; Ministry of Northern Affairs, eight hours; in the standing administration of justice committee: Solicitor General, 10 hours, followed by justice policy field, three hours; in the standing resources development committee: Ministry of Energy, seven hours; and in the standing social development committee: Ministry of Culture and Recreation, eight hours.


Hon. Mr Wells: Mr. Speaker, I would like to table the interim answers to questions 60 to 64, 67 to 68, 71, 73 and 76, standing on the Notice Paper. (See Hansard for Friday, May 15.)



Mr. Havrot moved resolution 3:

That, in the opinion of this House, the government should reflect the fact that mining is the largest employer and largest revenue producer in the north, by examining the feasibility of re-establishing a separate ministry of mines.

Mr. Speaker: The honourable member has up to 20 minutes for his presentation and he may reserve any portion of it for his windup.

Mr. Havrot: Mr. Speaker, I have never been much of a believer in fate. I have always felt that an individual's destiny lay in his own hands and that in a free society the work ethic counted for more than a crystal ball. But I have to reassess that belief after hearing the results of our private members' draw. Is it fate that my motion is the first private members' resolution to be presented before this parliament? I know there are members opposite who might attribute it to something else. I hope it is an indication of good times to come. There is no doubt in my mind that an administrative change will have a profound effect on the mining industry and the citizens of northern Ontario.

3:40 p.m.

I would like to preface my remarks by providing some background on the importance of the mining industry to this province and country. I ask the members to bear with me, but I think one of the problems this industry has faced in the last few years is one of misunderstanding. Some of us have forgotten just how important mining is to our province. If we can replace this ignorance with appreciation, I think we would be much closer to achieving our goal.

There are few industries in Canada that are active in all 10 provinces and both territories; mining is one of them. There are almost 300 operating mines that produce more than 60 different commodities. Canada's mining production is second only to that of the USSR in the entire world and accounts for approximately six per cent of our gross national product.

On a world level, Canada rates first as a producer of nickel, zinc, asbestos, silver and nepheline syenite. We are second in potash, molybdenum, gypsum, selenium, titanium and uranium production; third in gold and lead; fourth in copper and sixth in iron ore. It reads like the list of Russian medals at the Afghan Olympics.

Obviously, this vast national wealth is a substantial portion of our export market. As a matter of fact, approximately 60 per cent of our national mining production is shipped to foreign markets in almost 100 countries. It amounts to about one third of this country's total exports.

I noted with great interest an independent report on the development of our national mining and petroleum resources. Funded by the Canada West Foundation, it forecasts that Canada's trade balance, with no additional mineral development, would show a trade deficit of almost $13 billion by 1985. On the other hand, with additional development, the study suggests there could be a modest surplus.

The writing is on the wall. This nation's growth is very much tied to the growth of our mining industry. There is no question that Canada's mining production is anything but world class. There are not too many nations that wouldn't give their collective eye-teeth for our country's resources.

Mr. Martel: I guess so, when you give it all away.

Mr. Havrot: Just listen. On some of the things you will agree with me.

As a matter of fact, I am sure that the same can be said for Ontario's mineral resources. Most other countries fall behind our province's mineral production, let alone Canada's. In fact, our list of mining accomplishments is very impressive indeed. This province is second only to Alberta in mineral production. I might point out that the bulk of Alberta's production consists of crude oil and natural gas. Still, Ontario's annual mineral production is worth well over $3 billion. Discounting the recovery of fossil fuels, it has been estimated that about 42 per cent of Canada's entire mining output is from our province. To put that in perspective, it is estimated that Ontario's metallic mineral production is equivalent in value to almost half of the entire American production.

Mr. Mackenzie: How much do we get in Ontario taxes?

Mr. Havrot: We will get around to that. Don't get excited.

We are currently the world's largest single source of nickel and a major source of copper, zinc, cobalt and selenium. In the non-Communist world, we are the second largest source of silver and third largest source of zinc. In terms of value, Ontario is the largest single mining source of precious metals in North America.

In 1979, Ontario's mine output of precious metals was estimated at about $500 million. That figure is equivalent to the amount a consortium of 10 European nations is committing to the development of the space lab program. It is a considerable sum of money.

Nickel production has always played a major role in our provincial economy. It accounts for over 40 per cent of our metal production and is certainly a cornerstone of this economy. Most casual observers think that nickel affects only Sudbury's economy. It is true that that city does have a large stake in nickel, but we are all affected by this metal. Nickel production is equal to about 52 per cent of the cash income from Ontario farmers' livestock sales and to almost 96 per cent of the cash income from their total crop sales.

The world's demand for energy continues to grow, thus increasing the need for uranium. Ontario is Canada's largest producer at the present time and, in 1979, produced approximately 11 million pounds of uranium oxide. Major expansion programs are under way by both Rio Algom and Denison Mines in Elliot Lake. This community is still the largest uranium producing camp in the world. Not only will this uranium help to fill Ontario's needs, but these large reserves exceed our own requirements. This will help Canada's surplus trade balance, and is a situation which should continue well into the future.

Ontario also remains as a major world producer of platinum group metals. These platinoids are noble metals which are highly valued for their ability to withstand severe heat and corrosive elements. They are also able to resist oxidation in air or water and have an immunity to acid solutions. This ability to remain unchanged in various environments makes them a much sought after group of metals.

The eight platinoids are associated with nickel mining, and between six and 6.5 per cent of all metals recovered from nickel ores consist of the eight precious metals, as they are sometimes called. As I have mentioned before, we are blessed with vast nickel resources. The best known of the platinoids are gold and silver. Ontario is Canada's leading gold and silver producing province and the major contributor in our world ranking in both metals. The remaining precious metals are found in much smaller quantities.

The elements iridium, osmium, palladium, platinum, ruthenium and rhodium are used in jewellery, glass fibre production, glass processing and as catalysts in electrical contacts. They are also used in scientific and laboratory equipment, in spark plugs and magnets, in gasoline refining and in the production of strong alloys. Their uses are varied and the demand for them should continue well into the future.

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank you for your patience, but I felt it was important to develop a little background to Ontario's mining industry. To those who are not familiar with its production records, mining is very much the unknown industry. Some of the fault lies with the industry itself, and I am glad to see it is taking steps to correct public misconceptions. I also believe this government must shoulder some of the blame for mining's lack of recognition. Not only has it hidden away this vital industry, but in many ways it is stunting its future growth. It is a situation with which I am very concerned.


Mr. Havrot: It stunted your growth.

This industry will not be able to attain its full growth potential until we create a separate ministry of mines. As I have already outlined, it is a large industry but I am afraid its growth has not been very active. In the period of time between 1971 and 1980, only 35 certified new mines were opened in Ontario. Opening less than four mines per year will not keep Ontario as one of the world's premier mining jurisdictions. Exploration and development have declined and action must be taken if we are to gain our momentum.


The Deputy Speaker: Mr. Havrot has the floor, please.

Mr. Havrot: Mr. Speaker, will you look after these rowdies across the floor?

As I mentioned, the mining industry has been hidden away by the Ontario government. By placing the mining industry under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Natural Resources, we have allowed it to become overshadowed by the ministry's other activities.


Mr. Havrot: Be quiet. Listen and you might learn something. That ministry's activities are also considerable. When one considers that MNR is responsible for forestry, wildlife, fisheries, parks and recreation, land use, land management, conservation authorities, Indian resources policy, aviation and fire management and a surveys and mapping branch as well as mineral resources, it is surprising that the mortality rate of our ministers is not higher. I am surprised the Treasurer (Mr. F. S. Miller) suffered his heart attack before he became Minister of Natural Resources. At least all he has to worry about now is the provincial budget.

I am concerned about the basic philosophical difference MNR is forced to contend with. Unlike the mining section, the other branches deal with renewable resources. Forestry, wildlife and fisheries are all concerned with replacement policies. Minerals are a totally unrenewable resource. Once one has completed the mineral extraction of an ore body, the mining operation is forced to move. It is forced to pursue a policy of relocation, not regeneration.

Mining has never received the attention it is due. Even a cursory glance at the Ontario government phone book gives one some indication of the importance we place on the mining industry. MNR takes up a total of 24 pages of the phone book, yet no more than one page is devoted to the mineral resources section. This industry will not grow if we continue to neglect its proper magnitude and importance

3:50 p.m.

There is no doubt that the forestry section is the glamour branch of the ministry.


Mr. Havrot: Will you look after these rowdies, Mr. Speaker?

The Deputy Speaker: I am listening to you, Mr. Havrot.

Mr. Havrot: The Ontario government has done much in the last few years to increase production and regeneration practices. Pulp and paper mills have received substantial grants for modernization.


Mr. Havrot: Does the honourable member like that? The old Department of Lands and Forests was the forerunner of the present ministry. The former Department of Mines was no more than a small addition. This situation has really not changed. It is my suspicion that the majority of district managers are forestry people.

As you know, Mr. Speaker, the ministry is one of the most decentralized in the entire government. There are eight regional offices and over 40 district offices spread across the province. This decentralization requires a great deal of decision-making at the district managerial level. It just does not make sense to have a district manager who is a forestry expert making mining decisions or, conversely, a mining expert making forestry decisions. Unfortunately, this situation exists today to the detriment of both disciplines.

If one looks at the statistical comparison of these two industries, there is no question as to which is more important to this province's economy. Government revenue from the forestry industry was under $50 million last year, while the mining industry supplied over $102 million to the provincial coffers in 1980, over double that of forestry's contribution.

Employment statistics show similar results. At peak employment times, the forestry industry employs between 13,300 and 13,500 people. The mining industry employs over 34,000 people annually. To top it off, mining shows a greater stability of employment: at its lowest operations there are almost 33,000 employed.

The forestry industry experiences almost an 18 per cent decline during the off-peak season. On the other hand, mining does not undergo any such slump. Its employment drops less than five per cent. I believe that these figures give ample justification for the establishment of a ministry of mines.


The Deputy-Speaker: Will the member for Sudbury East (Mr. Martel) please let the speaker continue?


Mr. Havrot: I beg your pardon? Mr. Speaker, when is the member for Sudbury East going to grow up? He is still smarting from March 19. I can see that.

I thought it might be worth while to examine departmental jurisdictions in other provinces. I confess that I was not surprised to learn that six of the 10 provinces have separated mining and forestry responsibilities. Only Alberta, Quebec and New Brunswick have the same ministry or department responsible for both endeavours.

In Alberta's case, the forestry industry is so dominated by the giant petroleum concerns that it really does not warrant a separate ministry. New Brunswick mineral and forestry industries are both quite a bit smaller than those of Ontario and do not really compare in production levels. The bottom line is that almost all the other provinces have seen the benefits of having separate ministries.

One of the responsibilities of a new ministry of mines should be the formation of a new crown corporation for mining exploration that would have the same type of relationship as exists between the Ministry of Energy and Ontario Hydro.

Mr. Martel: Oh my God, a Socialist Tory.

Mr. Havrot: The honourable member liked that. I knew this would really turn him on.

Mr. Martel: We have been advocating it for years.

Mr. Havrot: The member has been advocating nothing.

I have been quite impressed by the record of a similar organization in Quebec known as Soquem. The Société québecoise d'exploration miniere was formed by the Quebec government in 1965 with an initial capital investment of $15 million.


Mr. Havrot: Wait until I get around to it; then the honourable member will see whether I am a progressive red Tory or not.

Since then an additional $67 million has been added. Soquem works alone or with other economic development agencies. It has the mandate to collaborate in the exploration of minerals and can buy or sell mining properties. Soquem's joint ventures with private or state enterprises are very flexible. Associates can share in exploration and development while sharing the risks. The company specializes in exploration only because its charter does not permit exploitation of the mineral deposits.


Mr. Havrot: You advocated that.

Soquem's search for associates centres on the capability of a partner that will eventually be capable of managing the development. The company has three objectives: to work with other companies, to speed up exploration of Quebec's territory and, most important, to stimulate the mining economy. All of these objectives are being met. Soquem has initiated developments in copper, columbium, salt, potash, zinc, gold and uranium and is now starting to show a modest profit. However, the biggest returns are the new jobs and new municipal developments which have resulted. Certainly, the increased corporate income, which is taxed, is also beneficial to the Quebec government.

I hope the new Minister of Natural Resources (Mr. Pope) will give this resolution some consideration. I know that his home community of Timmins was founded on mining and exists today because of that industry. I am also aware that he himself has worked underground and that a member of his family is employed by Texasgulf.


Mr. Havrot: You should try working in the mine.

Mr. Martel: I did.

Mr. Havrot: There is little or no doubt that the city of Timmins and its citizens would support this resolution, as would other communities throughout the north. It is a well-known fact that the Federation of Northern Ontario Municipalities has supported this idea for some time.

Recreating the ministry of mines would do much to reduce northern alienation. It would signify a renewed effort to give the north some economic momentum; but much more than that, it would give recognition and support to this essential industry of northern Ontario.

The Deputy Speaker: I would just like to bring to the attention of the House -- Mr. Martel, I am not sure of the interjection, but I think I do not have to remind you that it is unparliamentary to make any kind of statement in terms of other members misleading the House. I cannot say whether that was stated or not. I would just remind other members of the House that such statements are frowned upon by the chair.

Mr. Eakins: Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to have the opportunity to participate in this debate this afternoon. It will be interesting indeed to see how the government members vote on this. I recall when I suggested the possibility or the feasibility of a separate ministry of tourism, tourism being our second largest industry in Ontario, I know the Premier (Mr. Davis) and a number of cabinet ministers suggested that we would be simply creating another level of bureaucracy and simply another ministry, but with a realignment of ministries I believe this could be brought about.

I am glad to see that someone on that side of the House has finally become concerned enough about the recent steady decline in mineral exploration and lack of new mine developments in this province to be compelled to introduce this resolution calling for the re-establishment of a separate ministry of mines. As the Speaker may recall, this was the case in Ontario until 1972, when the government combined the separate Department of Lands and Forests and the Department of Mines to create a Ministry of Natural Resources.

We in this party are pleased to see that the honourable member who has proposed this resolution has realized the benefit of such a move and has taken a leaf out of our policy on the mining industry. We are thus supporting this resolution. In fact, during the past election campaign we in this party promised that a Liberal government in Ontario would move to strengthen the economic viability of the mining industry in this province through a number of initiatives, one of which is the creation of a ministry of mines and the establishment of a comprehensive mineral policy for the province. We believe such a move is necessary.

Ontario has been a major producer of precious metals and is still blessed with an abundant supply of them, along with nearly every other metal required by a modern industrial society. Metallic mineral production in Ontario in 1979 was worth some $2.5 billion and total mineral production was 3.3 per cent of the gross provincial product. Surely an industry of such importance warrants a separate ministry.

We believe, along with many other groups in our society, that the present Ministry of Natural Resources has failed to meet the needs not only of the mining industry, but other areas under its jurisdiction as well. A ministry whose responsibility it is to promote resource exploitation, while at the same time trying to promote resource conservation, is unacceptable to either group. This patchwork approach works against the best interests of Ontario and its people.

4 p.m.

No doubt the member who has proposed this resolution has realized that in the past few years the mining aspect of the portfolio of his government's Ministry of Natural Resources has not received the attention it deserves. And he is perfectly right. Between 1971 and 1980, some 30 mines closed in Ontario. While some 44,470 people were directly employed in the mining industry in 1971, there were only 38,600 employed in 1978, a decrease of some 5,870 workers.

An important early warning indicator of the health of the mining industry in Ontario is the level of exploration activity. According to this indicator, Ontario mining can anticipate a continuing decline in the future. Exploration and development expenditures in 1971 constant dollars went from $14.5 million in 1972 to $7.8 million in 1979. A recent Department of Energy, Mines and Resources regional profile report last year on the Ontario mining industry stated:

"The major concern affecting the mineral industry is the lack of new mine development in the province. No new mines have been brought on stream in Ontario for some years and there is little development activity at the present time. Indicators of exploration activity, such as annual diamond drill footage and claims staked, have also been declining for some years."

Another federal government report on Canadian mineral deposits not being mined in 1980 listed 376 known deposits of minerals in Ontario which were not mined or slated for production in 1981.

We had a trade deficit in mining machinery in Ontario of $250 million in 1979. This trend must be reversed. We are very concerned, as the member who introduced this resolution must be, that in the past decade very few mines have been found in Ontario and two of the largest were found by foreign corporations. During the past few years prices of all metals have escalated more than in any previous 50 years. Yet there has been no boom in the mining industry in Ontario. Many are wondering why. An analysis of production statistics published by the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources over the 30-year period from 1951 to 1980 for the seven major metals, which account for 93 per cent of the value of metals produced, indicates a downward trend in the last five years.

This trend is not evident in other provinces which have made efforts to step up the level of mining industry activity. In Quebec, for example, there are 10 new mines that will be coming on stream in the next year or so and at least 20 mines are forecast to open up by 1985. Quebec has taken a number of initiatives to aid its mining industry. It has established a provincial development corporation that is involved in joint ventures with private companies and pays part of the exploration costs or is involved in exploration itself. To alleviate financial difficulties for Quebec-based junior exploration companies, the Quebec Securities and Exchange Commission has adopted new rules for the listing of junior mining exploration company shares. Junior mining exploration companies now constitute a distinct category.

As I have already stated, we in this party support this resolution calling for the creation of a ministry of mines to aid our ailing mining industry. There are, however, a number of other initiatives we in the Liberal Party have called for that would help re-establish Ontario as the largest mineral producer in Canada.

I would hope the member who introduced this resolution would urge his government to move in several areas. One would be to negotiate a federal-provincial agreement on resource taxation with a reasonable ceiling on total taxation to stabilize the system. This would replace the present process of budget-by-budget changes in taxation.

Financing for junior mines in Ontario should be encouraged by means of a revision of the Ontario Security Commission's regulations. In order to encourage mine exploration, more airborne geophysical surveys should be carried out on geophysically favourable areas for the use of mining companies.

The government should insist on increased secondary and tertiary processing of ores mined in Ontario. As part of an Ontario industrial strategy, it should develop a mining machinery industry based in northern Ontario.

It should introduce legislation to provide that the staking and recording of a mining claim is sufficient title to begin a small-scale mining operation --

The Deputy Speaker: You have approximately a minute and a half left.

Mr. Eakins: -- after all reasonable safety and environmental concerns have been taken into account. Without such legislation, many small mineral deposits would never be mined due to their limited size. In order to encourage mining exploration, the government should establish a program similar to that existing in Quebec, which provides for joint government funding of certain ventures in the early stages of mine development. I am pleased to speak in support of this resolution.

Mr. Laughren: Mr. Speaker, I must say I am fascinated by this resolution from the member for Timiskaming (Mr. Havrot). He wants to turn the clock back to 1972 and beyond. Let me tell the members that one reason we are not going to support this resolution is that, up until 1972, the kind of gamesmanship that went on between the mining industry and the ministry of mines in this province was a disgrace. The best word to describe it is coverup. I shall never forget the shenanigans that went on between Elliot Lake and the ministry of mines, the Workmen's Compensation Board and the Ministry of Health in this province. It is to the everlasting shame of this government what was allowed to happen -- and I emphasize the word allowed -- at Elliot Lake to the workers employed in the Rio Algom and Denison mines.

The member for Timiskaming says that mining is our largest employer and largest producer. When I look at the number of employees in mining -- and I look at it over the last few years; it is hard to get the number of employees up to date now, because the Ministry of Natural Resources does not keep its figures in a constant way over the years -- what is happening is that the number of tons of ore is going up, and the number of workers employed in the mining industry is going down. I personally would have no objection to that; that is what automation and mechanization are all about. It makes the mines more productive. But guess where they are buying the mining machinery? Not in this province; not even in this country. And this government sits on its collective hands and does absolutely nothing about that problem.

The number of people employed in the mining industry is less now than it was 15 years ago. If the member does not know that, he simply has not done his homework. He says it is the biggest revenue producer in Ontario. I believe I heard him say that. That is probably the biggest condemnation of this government, if all that comes to mind is the revenue they get out of our minerals. I ask members to compare the revenues from the mineral sector of this province with the revenues Saskatchewan gets from its mineral sector. It is a disgraceful comparison for Ontario -- an absolutely disgraceful comparison. I will tell the members something: Saskatchewan did not get that revenue either until its government had the common sense to take the key resources into the public sector and get a proper return for the people of Saskatchewan. That is not going to happen in this province until this government takes the same kind of action.

Their return is almost six times the value -- the return based on the value of production. The member sits back there and smirks about the kind of pathetic return we get from our resources. When I look at the return that even Inco gets from the resource; that company, for heaven's sake, gets more than we do, and we have all the resources in the province. Between 1974 and 1978, Inco's net income averaged $172 million. The province's mineral revenues averaged $65 million a year. It is a lot higher than our return on the investment.

The member may think he knows something about mining in Ontario, but if he thinks we are getting a decent return he is displaying his ignorance as no one in this House has done. I look at the exemptions this province gives to the mining industry. At the last count, there were 23 exemptions to section 113 of the Mining Act. Come on, where are all these smart people over there who even know what section 113 is? They sit there like a bunch of dummies. They do not even know what section 113 says, that minerals must be processed in Ontario.

The government gives companies all the exemptions they want. Falconbridge has been in Sudbury for almost 50 years. They still send all their ore to Norway for processing. Do members really think that is right? Do they really think that makes any economic sense at all? Not a whit. They are not a small enterprise. They are part of the huge Superior Oil empire from Houston, Texas.

4:10 p.m.

This member, who would be a minister, comes in here and proudly beats his chest about the ministry of mines. I want to tell you something, Mr. Speaker. I would not want the mining industry to have any more of the attention of this government than it has now. The last thing we need is for the industry to have their minister in the seat. This is nothing but a lobby by the mining industry. The member from Timiskaming has been lobbied by the mining industry.

I know. I have heard their pronouncements. I have been at their convention. What they say is, "We want our own ministry of mines," and here comes the flunkey for the mining industry, Ed Havrot from Timiskaming. "Okay, fellows, tell me what you want." They say, "We want our own ministry, that is what we want," and in comes Eddie Havrot, fresh from receiving his orders from the same people --

Mr. Havrot: Nonsense.

Mr. Laughren: Let me tell you who has got the exemptions to section 113. Do you think they are all small enterprises that are just trying to get started and need the exemptions? Oh, sure -- Inco, Rio Algom, Falconbridge, Teck, Texasgulf -- these are the small entrepreneurs, struggling as they are to be free enterprisers, who are asking and getting the exemptions. There really is an unholy alliance between this government and the mining industry.

I know it did not bother the member for Timiskaming when Mr. Keith Reynolds retired after a long career in the civil service in Ontario. He is barely out of his chair as a deputy minister -- a very major deputy minister in this government; I believe he was a deputy to the Premier at one time -- and there he is on the board of directors of Rio Algom.

Mr. Havrot: He is a smart man. That is why they went after him.

Mr. Laughren: Yes, he is a smart man. I am not questioning his intelligence. I am just telling the member I do not like that.

Mr. Kolyn: How about Tommy Douglas?

Mr. Laughren: There is no blemish on Tommy Douglas' record and there are a lot of blemishes on this government's record. Look at this government. Yes.


Mr. Laughren: If the member really wants to get mean, I could give him some examples of what this government has allowed to happen to workers at Elliot Lake. There is blood on the collective hands of this government and I mean every word of that.

I will substantiate that. There was information flowing into the Workmen's Compensation Board about cancer claims being fed over to the Ministry of Health, and guess what this government did about it? Absolutely nothing. It fought every inch of the way against justice for the miners at Elliot lake. To this day this government will not recognize workers who get cancer from the sintering plant in Coniston. Oh yes, if they get cancer from the sintering plant at Copper Cliff they are recognized if they have worked there for six months or a year. But at Coniston, oh no. Every step of the way it is a fight. With the asbestos, every step of the way is a fight.

And there is the man right there. I am glad the member for Kenora is here, because if anybody should assume the major part of the responsibility for the problems that miners have had in this province, it is the member for Kenora, who is now the Minister of Northern Affairs. He knows it too. He knows it full well.

Mr. Speaker, I want to say --

Hon. Mr. Bernier: Mr. Speaker, on a point of privilege --

The Deputy Speaker: Point of privilege, please, Mr. Laughren.

Mr. Laughren: I doubt it.

The Deputy Speaker: Let us hear the point of privilege.

Hon. Mr. Bernier: I really cannot accept that remark, because if the honourable member was honest and fair he would put on the record that it was this minister who brought in the Ham commission -- and not at the request of that particular party. The Royal Commission on the Health and Safety of Workers in the Mines was brought forward by myself. It has corrected the problem. Let the record show that.

The Deputy Speaker: Mr. Laughren, you have approximately three minutes left.

Mr. Laughren: I am hoping you will add that time on.

The Deputy Speaker: I have. It was a minute and I have allowed two extra minutes.

Mr. Laughren: Thank you. That minister is protesting his innocence a little too much and he knows it.

We are not going to support this resolution for a number of reasons. One, we are not in favour, unlike the Tories, of a bloated government bureaucracy. I heard the leader of the Liberal Party say that if they formed the government they would reduce the number of ministries in the province. While they are going to do that they are also going to create a separate ministry of mines and a separate ministry of tourism. I do not know what they are cutting out. Maybe some day they will explain it to me.

Two, we will not support this resolution because we do not believe the industry should have its own ear in the form of its own ministry, and that is what it would be with this government.

Three, I recall where the mine inspectors invariably came from -- the same industry they were to inspect.

The Deputy Speaker: The member had better make number three fast.

Mr. Laughren: Finally, there need to be conflicts within one ministry. This is probably more important than any other reason. There need to be competing attentions to whatever is out there -- for example, the air, the water, the land. It is much healthier to have parks and recreations in the same ministry as mines and in the same ministry as forestry, so that we have competing demands on the same resources. Otherwise, the ministry of mines would tend to win more often than it loses and forestry would suffer, parks and recreation would suffer. Our land, water and air would suffer as well.

So we are opposing this resolution. We never again want to see a minister of this government be the kewpie doll of the mining industry. We will always be opposed to that. When we form the government --

The Deputy Speaker: This will be your last statement, Mr. Laughren.

Mr. Laughren: -- there may very well be a need for a ministry that will look after not just mines but our entire family of crown corporations that will exploit the resources of this province properly, keeping in mind the environment and keeping in mind the health and safety of the workers who are employed in the industry. For those other reasons, we cannot support the resolution.

Mr. Gordon: Mr. Speaker, I am truly shocked to hear the member for Nickel Belt say that when they form the government they are going to create not only a ministry involved with mines but they are going to have one great big umbrella ministry. I think that smacks of real statism and I cannot agree with something like that.

To suggest for one minute that because someone is a minister of a particular department he is not interested in the people of this province is really a slur. I think it is a slur this House cannot ignore.

In my previous political occupation I had the opportunity of meeting and talking with people from all walks of life throughout northern Ontario. If there is one theme that came through loud and clear it was the belief that the rest of Ontario did not realize the tremendous potential of northern Ontario when it came to mining and the secondary industry that should be in place next to it. It is almost as if there were a curtain separating the north from the rest of Ontario once we reach Barrie.

A ministry like the Ministry of Natural Resources is like a mother with 10 children. As much as she loves each one of them and wants and tries to do the very best for each, she cannot give each child the attention she knows would be possible if there were only four or five. To be more specific, when one considers that mining is without question one of the cornerstones of the Canadian economy, and approximately 42 per cent of Canada's entire mining output is from Ontario, it is grossly shortsighted to ignore the full potential of that industry, the people who work within it and the communities that are dependent upon it, by having mining a branch of a ministry.

4:20 p.m.

It deserves and requires much more thought and attention. Some historians claim man is almost predestined continually to repeat the mistakes of the past. While I can see a certain measure of truth in that theory, I believe we have the capacity to avoid many mistakes and to find more positive and constructive ways of ensuring a better future for our people.

While we know the north is rich in mineral resources, I believe it is incumbent upon us to see those resources are extracted in a way that is beneficial to all concerned. Minerals are a nonrenewable resource.

We must have policies that ensure resources are being extracted in the most conserving way, policies that ensure sufficient research is being done to maximize the future potential of Ontario's ores, policies that stimulate the mining instrumentation required to reduce the number of mine fatalities, and policies that progressively improve health and safety. I think it is wrong that we do not have a ministry of mines, a ministry that is going to look even more closely at safety within the mining industry.

Mr. Wildman: I thought the Ministry of Labour was supposed to do that.


Mr. Gordon: I would ask those people on the other side of the House to listen for a moment, because this is not a laughing matter and I can see them laughing. Listen to this: Mining fatalities in 1975 were 10; in 1976, 22; in 1977, 13; in 1978, 12; in 1979, nine; in 1980, 19. In 1980-81, as of May 13, there were seven. We cannot ignore the mining industry if we care at all about the people of Ontario.

Mr. Laughren: What are you doing about it?

Mr. Gordon: We cannot say, as the members of the New Democratic Party on the other side are saying, "Ignore the mining industry, ignore the people who work for the mining industry, ignore the communities that depend upon that mining industry." That is their attitude. They are not interested. They are very cynical to sit on the other side of the House and laugh when statistics like that are being given.

We need policies that recognize the potential for the development of mining related industries in communities large enough to provide the amenities of life for those who would work in those fields, policies that ensure the highest possible value is added to Ontario's ores, policies for future development. We have to look closely at the mining industry. It is much too important to the people of this province.

I am aware some of these issues are being addressed at the present time within the Ministry of Natural Resources. However, I find it hard to believe an industry of the size and scope we are talking about is being given the consideration and due it deserves.

Contrary to what some people on the other side think, northerners believe that in the large mining centres our resource strength can be used as a building block for industrial development. What it is going to require is the resourcefulness of a ministry of mines, as well as the Ministry of Industry and Tourism, that is fully aware of the thousands of products and services used by that mining centre. There is a great deal of work that is going to be required of the ministry people involved. It only seems logical that those who know the mining business best should be given a major role to play in this regard.

For example, in the Sudbury economic area, which in my view stretches from Elliot Lake to Sudbury and encompasses a portion of the north channel of Lake Huron, there is more than sufficient mining and smelting activity within that area to generate the kinds of supply spinoffs necessary to initiate the manufacturing related to mining.

I think it is a generally accepted fact in our society that governments respond to public wishes and expectations.

Mr. Wildman: You really try to have it both ways.

Mr. Laughren: Are you going to say this in Sudbury too, or just in Toronto?

Mr. Gordon: They do not want to hear the truth because they believe they are the only ones who can speak for the people. That is why they keep interjecting. That is why they do not want to listen to me today.

Mr. Laughren: Mr. Speaker, on a point of privilege: could I ask you to insist that the member for Sudbury promises to say the same thing in Sudbury as he says here for a change?

The Deputy Speaker: I will do that, Mr. Laughren, if you will comply by not being so provocative.

Mr. Gordon: Mr. Speaker, I have absolutely no problem with that, and that is what bothers those people, because they believe they are the only ones who can speak for the people.

The public in Sudbury have seen local entrepreneurs, metal fabricators in particular, develop specific items for the mining industry that are being used on a daily basis. They have seen that it is possible, feasible, to produce roof bolts, grout plugs, et cetera for the mines. Unlike some Ontarians the people of Sudbury and the north have not lost their vision of the potential promise of this great province. We truly expect and believe that there is much more that can be done to foster and develop manufacturing and instrumentation related to mining.

I detect at times a negative attitude in this province with regard to our ability to compete with other manufacturing countries. It is a counterproductive attitude. However, I can tell members this is not generally the attitude of people who live in northern Ontario. Northern people have successfully overcome most of the obstacles presented by both nature and man, and, as a result, they have even higher expectations of our capabilities as a people.

Oh yes, there are some people sitting in the opposition today who have taken ill with the disease of intellectual snobbery. They think that only they have the ideas, and no one else. Fortunately the people are not easily fooled. They recognize that some politicians have a propensity to forget after a number of years when and where they first heard the idea that they are espousing. But they do not want to give that credit to the people. They say: "It is my idea. I was the first one who ever had that thought." Next they will want us to believe that they are the Lord. Well, they are not.

We are not here today to discuss intellectual snobbery. The issue is whether or not we should have a ministry of mines, and I will try to confine my remarks to the subject at hand if I am not interrupted again.

The Deputy Speaker: Within one minute.

Mr. Gordon: Mining companies, according to a report done by Goldfarb Consultants, have a number of problems with the public.

First, their image as corporate citizens leaves much to be desired. I do not believe, nor do the people of Sudbury believe, that it can be improved through advertising. As far as we are concerned the most important element in determining a company's image as a corporate citizen is its attitude towards its employees. If a company consults and truly listens to its employees and, as a result, improves the climate of the work place then it is well on its way to developing a positive public image. As well, if the company is seen to be doing everything it can along with other community leaders to help diversify the local economy then it can expect to develop a much more positive and productive image as a corporate citizen.

A good corporate image cannot be achieved through advertising if you are an Edsel. It is unfortunate that the importance and prestige of the mining industry is being pulled down by a few companies which fail to realize that the vital profitability they seek is being jeopardized by poor employee and community relations.

The Deputy Speaker: Thank you very much, Mr. Gordon.

Mr. Gordon: Mr. Speaker, I would ask for one more minute.

The Deputy Speaker: I am afraid not.

Mr. Gordon: I do not believe there is anyone --

The Deputy Speaker: Mr. Gordon, order, please. I have been extremely lenient, believe it or not, and under time constraints the debate is almost at its conclusion. We will still try to get another round of debate.

You are standing up, Mr. Gordon. Please be seated. Thank you very much. Your debate is concluded.

Mr. T. P. Reid: It is always enjoyable, Mr. Speaker, to listen to a fellow Liberal, even if he happens to be sitting across the floor on the back benches of the Conservative Party.

I must say this has been an interesting debate. We have my friend the member for Nickel Belt (Mr. Laughren) saying that he and his party will vote against this resolution because they are against a bloated bureaucracy and they do not want to see any more civil servants. I do not know how he squares that with the fact that the Socialists want to nationalize the mining industry in Ontario, Canada and the world and have no one but civil servants running everything -- but then he squares being a Socialist with his own conscience, so I suppose that is possible.


Mr. T. P. Reid: Mr. Speaker, I am speaking as the leader of the Liberal-Labour Party in the Ontario Legislature. I want to put another comment on the record -- before I get into the meat of what I am going to say today -- in regard to what my friend the member for Nickel Belt said about how the mining industry and the government or the then department of mines were in bed together or hand and glove and there was a great conspiracy about many things.

4:30 p.m.

In the last few years I have had the opportunity to meet a number of people in the Ontario Mining Association at the dinners they host every year and other events, and I have been struck by nothing so much as the fact that the people in the mining industry as a whole are, if I may say, very politically ignorant. They do not know how the system works. They are people who have come from a background, particularly in engineering, where they have specific goals and objectives to meet and they have been trained to meet those goals and objectives. They can see and plot a course on how to get the ore out of a mine, produce it at a reasonable cost and sell it at a profit. The whole political aspect and political system in which they live is very foreign to them in many cases.

Their biggest complaint is usually that all three parties in this Legislature, and the government in particular, do not understand the mining business, that there is somewhere a group of civil servants making decisions in a back room aimed directly at messing up their operations in the mining industry in general. It is a frightening thing to come to the realization that, in fact, very few of the people engaged in running multi-million dollar corporations have a better understanding of how the political system works in Ontario. Really, it was a shocking revelation to me.

Mr. Laughren: They know very well. As a matter of fact they run it. They run the Minister of Northern Affairs.

Mr. T. P. Reid: I disagree with the member for Nickel Belt. As a matter of fact, I heard a number of them say they did not care very much for the Minister of Northern Affairs because they felt he was doing them dirty on occasion. I said I did not care much for the Minister of Northern Affairs either, but for a different reason.

The point is that in northern Ontario mining is one of our biggest employers and certainly one of our biggest earners of revenue. Yet this very important part of life in northern affairs is only a very small fish in the Ministry of Natural Resources. As a matter of fact, the average person on the street, if asked what the Ministry of Natural Resources did, would say they look after the moose and the fish. People really do not understand the resource section of the Ministry of Natural Resources, particularly forestry. On a graph of what is important in that ministry, forestry would be number one, game and fish would probably be number two, and mining would be somewhere down at the bottom.

Given the importance of mining to the Ontario economy, given the fact that the mining industry does not have the importance to the government it should have, it is obvious we need a separate ministry of mines. It was interesting to hear my friend from Sudbury, who just spoke, criticizing his own government for its lack of response and attention to the mining industry. The member for Timiskaming stole part of my speech when he went through the phone book. It is interesting to see that most of the mining section is over on Grenville Street, although our friend Mr. Jewett is on the same floor as the ministry.

I think part of the problem is that the mining industry is fairly esoteric. A few years ago we passed a bill in this House dealing with mining taxation. With the exception of myself and Tom Mohide, who runs the mining assessment division within the Ministry of Natural Resources, there is nobody who understands mining taxation in Ontario -- and we do not agree. It is a very complicated and complex matter.

When one talks to most civil servants within the Ministry of Natural Resources about the mining industry, their eyes sort of glaze over and they shrug their shoulders and say, "Well, that is not really my division." We do not even have an assistant deputy minister responsible exclusively for mining in Ontario. That at least would be a first step in bringing to bear the intentions of the mining industry in the province.

It was interesting that the new Minister of Natural Resources (Mr. Pope), in his first official speech at his first official function as minister, said to the Ontario Mining Association two weeks ago, in effect: "We know we have been neglecting the mining industry, the concerns of the mining industry itself, the communities and so on, and we intend to change that. We are going to have a one-window approach." This is a phrase that always gets me; I conjure up burglars coming in the side windows or the back windows or going out with the silver. I am not sure what that means.

However, it is interesting that the minister himself, and obviously the officials in his ministry, would make that one point in his first speech; that the mining arm of the government or the Ministry of Natural Resources was going to get more attention.

Mr. Speaker, as you know, in the last couple of years, two mines in my constituency, Steep Rock and Caland Ore, shut down. The response from the Ministry of Natural Resources to those shutdowns was interesting. I was a little disappointed to say the least that there was not more initiative shown by the mining section in regard to those shutdowns, by providing information, surveys and inspection reports, and dealing with those shutdowns and a few more that have occurred in Ontario.

It seems to me that the mining section, as it now exists, is completely reactive to any problems that may or may not exist. Almost every other branch of the Ontario government has people of varying competence to assess what is going to happen in the near or distant future, and there are people to initiate and take action before a crisis or calamity happens.

As I said, I was disappointed. I feel it is partly because mining is looked upon almost as the illegitimate child of the Ministry of Natural Resources. It is time that mining took its rightful place and became a ministry of its own, as the Liberal Party suggested in the last election.

The Deputy Speaker: The member for Algoma. This debate will conclude at approximately 4:44 p.m.

Mr. Wildman: Mr. Speaker, I find it interesting that we are here to debate a resolution by the member for Timiskaming regarding the creation of one more ministry in this government. It seems to be the attitude of the government that whenever it finally realizes it has failed in a certain area, it establishes another administrative structure.

You will recall a few years ago, Mr. Speaker, that because of the efforts of my colleague the member for Algoma-Manitoulin (Mr. Lane), who is no longer present in the House this afternoon, in pointing out that the provincial government generally had failed its responsibilities in northern Ontario and that northern Ontario was being ignored, the solution was to create an all-encompassing ministry that would deal with all the problems of the north and would co-ordinate the function of the line ministries, respond to the government's responsibilities and carry out the services we need in northern Ontario. This ministry would somehow bring about the economic development and stability we need. That was the Ministry of Northern Affairs.

4:40 p.m.

All I can see from this proposal is that the member for Timiskaming feels both the Ministry of Natural Resources and the Ministry of Northern Affairs have failed to meet their responsibilities to the people of northern Ontario. If the government were doing what it was required and supposed to do in northern Ontario, we would not need another ministry.

I wonder where this will all end. I suppose if we created a ministry of mines, the next thing would be that next year we would have some Tory member get up to say, "We need a ministry of moose," and then "We need a ministry of fish," and we would continue because all these things are not being dealt with by the Ministry of Natural Resources.

We all know the Ministry of Northern Affairs does not direct the budgetary expenditures of the other ministries, including the Ministry of Natural Resources. It is unable to deal with the economic problems of the north.

What is really missing and what we need from this government is not more ministries and not more administrative structures, but the political will to do something about economic development in northern Ontario. What we need is a real commitment because, as other members have said this afternoon, we have an enormous potential in the north. Our minerals produce approximately $2.03 billion in revenue to the private sector. Ninety per cent of our annual ore tonnage is extracted north of the French River. If we have the ministries that are supposed to be responsible for dealing with this industry, why do we need another one if we believe they have not failed in their responsibilities?

I find myself in the strange position of agreeing with the member for Timiskaming in the sense that this government has indeed failed to give the leadership required in northern Ontario. All we have to do is look at the record in Atikokan and Capreol to realize this government has not responded to development needs in the mining sector. We know this government sat by and did absolutely nothing about the situation in Atikokan.

We believe we need a government that will assume a direct, positive and aggressive role in the mining sector. We need comprehensive planning and we need public ownership. I find it rather strange, but again I agree with the member for Timiskaming that we do need to move to crown corporations -- but they need to be a little different from the one he is proposing. We do not need crown corporations that are just going to do the exploration and socialize all the costs, but ones that are going to provide a return for the people of Ontario, a return that could then be used for reinvestment and further expansion through joint ventures and direct investment by that crown corporation.

Such a mining development corporation could have ensured the Bending Lake iron ore deposits were developed rather than left to sit while Atikokan was shut down. Rather than the passive and weak-kneed approach of this government, we need a government that has the will to respond to the needs of the mining communities of northern Ontario.

We could finance this if we would just look, as my colleague said, at the situation in Saskatchewan where they have a booming mining industry. I am not talking about fuel; I am not talking about the oil and gas sector. Just in the mineral sector they get almost six times as much revenue as in Ontario, which can then be used for reinvestment, expansion and to provide jobs.

Why can we not do that in northern Ontario? Why can the Ministry of Northern Affairs and the Ministry of Natural Resources not cooperate to do something? I submit the reason they cannot is because this government does not have the political will to become directly involved in the mining sector and actually to develop northern Ontario.


Mr. Spensieri moved resolution 4:

That in the opinion of this House the procedural affairs committee should undertake a study of all provincial appointments made to agencies, boards and commissions, as well as to senior levels of the public service, which would determine whether the social and ethnocultural diversity of the population of Ontario is reasonably reflected in those appointments.

Mr. Spensieri: Mr. Speaker, the resolution I have proposed to this House calls upon the procedural affairs committee to undertake a study of the composition of Ontario's important decision-making bodies and the senior echelon of the civil service to determine whether appointees thereto reasonably reflect the social and ethnocultural diversity of the population of this province.

Mr. Piché: On a point of personal privilege, Mr. Speaker: I also was supposed to speak on the subject of the ministry of mines. I was on the list and I am just wondering what happened.

The Deputy Speaker: Unfortunately, the time for the debate ran out. It concluded at 4:44 p.m. We are continuing now with the second ballot item.

Mr. Piché: And I stayed up all night to prepare this.

Mr. Spensieri: To continue, Mr. Speaker: When the luck of the draw handed me the number two position for private members' business, I must confess my first reaction was one of positive shock at the thought that I, a brand new member, should be attempting so soon to persuade members opposite on so delicate an issue. However, the overwhelming sense of confidence that overtakes one after having logged more than 20 minutes of speaking in this House in reply to the throne speech and the knowledge that I would be sharing this time for private members' public business with the member for Timiskaming (Mr. Havrot) have since emboldened me in my resolve to try.

I also considered it the work of providence that the member for Timiskaming, whose unguarded remarks in this House about my Italian-Canadian confreres were made some two years ago, should now be followed by me. I would like to assure the honourable member -- and I wish he were here -- that we will keep on coming in ever increasing numbers until this House reaches its fair quota for that particular community and all others; a perfectly cheerful thought for the honourable member, I am certain.

I speak of quotas quite facetiously and with tongue in cheek, for in my resolution I am not calling for the institution of any type of quota system. Rather, I am seeking the establishment of the principle of reasonable representation, equitable representation and simple justice in determining the composition of the more than 600 agencies, boards and commissions and of the senior civil service, institutions that in many respects have by far outstripped this House in importance and are perceived by the average constituent as the only visible presence of his or her Ontario government.

Nor am I naive enough to call for a nonpartisan approach to appointments since that would be unrealistic, in the light of Ontario's politics today, and merely window dressing, as was stated by many political commentators when Mr. Ziemba entered into his nonpartisan crusade less than a year ago.

Merit must always be the basic determining factor; we are committed to that principle. However, the search for appropriate individuals should be widened to include members of all elements of society regardless of their political allegiance or their particular ethnic or cultural background.

Over the years the enormous growth of this extra parliamentary level of government, ultimately responsible only to the Premier (Mr. Davis) and his cabinet, has had a tremendous and far-reaching impact upon our daily lives. Today there is a widespread perception among Ontarians that our citizens are helpless and alienated from the bureaucracy that was intended to protect their interests. Voter turnout in the recent election, which was the lowest in Ontario's history, reflects this remarkable feeling of apathy and helplessness.

Please try to imagine, therefore, Mr. Speaker, the feelings of the so-called third force, that segment of the population that is not in the mainstream of Anglo culture and recently has become more visible because of its skin colour and how alienated its members must now feel.

4:50 p.m.

These people perceive they are second-class citizens and not truly part of the mainstream when it comes to appointments. They represent in excess of one third of the population of Ontario and more than 40 per cent of the population of Metropolitan Toronto, according to the 1971 census. These percentages will undoubtedly rise, as the Star suggested during the election campaign, to 70 per cent of Metro residents when the 1981 census is tabulated.

I believe it is incumbent upon every member of this House to recognize, as a matter of simple justice and democratic obligation, the need to ensure that all Ontarians, and not merely the "traditional elements of the population," are recognized as fully participating members of our society.

The resolution before us provides us an opportunity of using one of the most important vehicles for fair and democratic representation available to any parliamentary system: the machinery for making appointments. If the citizens of Ontario could honestly believe there is no covert old-boy network determining the composition of government at the senior levels on traditional lines, then they could more easily perceive themselves to be a part of the structure that governs this province.

There was some difficulty in developing an accurate picture of the composition both of the senior level of the civil service and of the various boards, agencies and commissions. The basic data were derived from a list of appointees whose names may indicate only their paternal ancestry, or that they may have changed their names or had their names changed for them.

But the most important data were the widespread feelings among the ethnocultural communities of nonrepresentation. Yet in the course of my research on this resolution I did discover some very startling data illustrating the importance of reasonableness. Simply because it was much easier to determine gender from the information available, and because no one, except some members opposite, might feel differently, I would draw to the attention of members the appalling situation with respect to the number of women at the senior levels of the civil service.

Of 52 appointments announced by the Premier's office to boards, agencies and commissions during the last six months, only eight were women. All 21 deputy ministers are male and only one out of 42 assistant deputy ministers is a woman. I bring this information to the House because it so graphically demonstrates the necessity for a thorough study of the composition of the civil service with respect to adequate representation of all segments of Ontario society.

The members of the ethnocultural communities perceive themselves to be under-represented, and that is the crux. They are consequently prime candidates for the lack of esteem, alienation and helplessness that I spoke of earlier. The crux of the matter is that the ethnocultural communities will no longer be satisfied with patronizing pats on the head from their elected officials or token cheques handed out during election campaigns, as the Premier flits about from one community centre to the next.

We no longer wish applause for our traditional and quaint costumes or folk dances. We now ask to be an integral part of the appointments and of the appointees that govern this province, and the beneficiaries of high positions that should be in the public domain and not in the elitist domain. If we are truly servants of the people, if we are fully committed to the best interests of Ontario, we must lose no opportunity to use every method available to increase the sense of belonging and of full participation of each member of our society.

The Premier and his ministers travel around the province meeting with this and that ethnocultural community, exchanging platitudes of laudatory congratulations for their accomplishments. Members opposite will recognize phrases such as, "Your community strengths and richness have contributed to the diversity we treasure so highly." The people listening enjoy it; they need that public congratulation, and I applaud the government for doing this. But in the final analysis they remain simply words, and what this province needs is action and representation. I believe it is time this government recognized the realities of this province and acted upon them.

Are there any deputy ministers who have a heritage or identify with any culture except the mainstream one? How many deputy ministers are there? I challenge the government to find one; if there is one, then to find two, or three, until there is a reasonable representation of the province of Ontario at all levels and for all peoples.

It is this study, I would remind the Speaker, which I propose for the procedural affairs committee. This is the challenge that I and my party issue to the members opposite. I know that during their policy and strategy sessions the members opposite may have come to a consensus to vote against all measures initiated by the opposition benches. I am asking in this resolution for a study to see whether the perceived level of inequity exists. If it does exist, then the procedural affairs committee will recommend ways of dealing with it. I would therefore move that this motion be adopted.

Mr. Grande: Mr. Speaker, I rise to support the intent of the resolution that is before the Legislature this afternoon, even though I think it is a very weak resolution, to say the least. Perhaps because it is a weak resolution the Progressive Conservative Party will allow it to go through; because it is a weak resolution it will just be another demonstration of the tokenism that the people on that side are very capable of showing at all times.

I sense, as I said, that the resolution is not so controversial that the people opposite will kill it this afternoon. However, I do hope the member for Timiskaming (Mr. Havrot) will be outside this Legislature when the vote is taken, because otherwise, if he brings forth his gang of three or four -- and maybe they have increased -- there may be some persuasion behind the scenes that the Progressive Conservative Party ought to block this resolution; led, of course, by the member for Timiskaming.

I cannot imagine the member for Timiskaming feeling any kind of responsibility at all for hiring civil servants in a Progressive Conservative government who are going to reflect the nature of the province of Ontario, who are going to reflect the 30 per cent of the people in Ontario who have neither English nor French as their background. I cannot see that individual doing that. I cannot fathom the thought of that gentleman, when he leaves active politics, being appointed by the Premier of this province as the chairman of any of the boards or commissions in this province. May God help us.

However, the member for Timiskaming is certainly not the only one on that side of the House, because in the last two or three weeks we have heard of another distinguished member of the Progressive Conservative Party by the name of Mr. Paul Fromm, who has very clear ideas about what the third element, the third force in our society ought to be and where its place is in our society.

Mr. Rotenberg: That is why he got kicked out.

5 p.m.

Mr. Grande: Whether he was kicked out or not, the fact is that the members opposite harbour people in their party who hold and who publicly state those opinions. That is a fact.

I will support the resolution, basically because it is a mea culpa as far as the Liberal Party of Ontario is concerned. When the constitution was being debated in this very same Legislature, six members of the New Democratic Party took the position of the multicultural society and suggested a new constitution ought to reflect the makeup of this country and of this province. As a result of that debate, and I am not going to suggest solely as a result of that debate, Ontario was able to bring forth to the federal government the thought that maybe the multicultural makeup of this province and this country ought to be recognized. There we find in a preamble, in a footnote I might say, that the makeup of the country might be mentioned in the constitution.

I say it is a mea culpa for the Liberal Party of Ontario because it was the education critic of that party who said the Conservative government was spending too much on the heritage language program and there should be a cap on it.

I also mention the Liberal Party because, of course, one cannot really understand what the Ontario Liberal Party might do. The only way one would know would be when Liberals are in power. And what do they do at the federal level? As a matter of fact, with respect to the member for Yorkview (Mr. Spensieri), if one takes a look at the record of the federal Liberal Party, it is not going to be any better than the record of the Conservative Party here in Ontario in terms of appointments and chairmanships of commissions, save, of course, for one particular body, the Canadian Consultative Council on Multiculturalism, all 64 members of which come from minority groups or from ethnocultural groups.

Ontario, and I am glad the former chairman of the Ontario Advisory Council on Multiculturalism and Citizenship is here this afternoon, follows in step with the federal government and institutes an advisory committee whose recommendations the ministers of Culture and Recreation and of Education simply do not accept. In terms of the Ontario Advisory Council on Multiculturalism and Citizenship, I am waiting to find out who will be the next chairman, where the next $40,000-a-year job is going to go, which ex-member of parliament or good Tory out there is going to have that position.

Let me say in the few minutes I have left that I accept the resolution; I support it. However, in 1979 -- I want to have my friend from Yorkview understand -- a series of questions was put on the Order Paper to find out how the different ministries of this government really reflect the multicultural reality out there. The statistics given to me about two or three months later were really surprising.

For example, in the Ministry of Community and Social Services, out of 10,162 people employed, 728 are people who have the facility of speaking a third language, which means seven per cent. Is seven per cent reflective of 30 to 33 per cent of the population of this province? I do not think I need to answer that. Out of that seven per cent, 50 per cent are doing menial jobs within that ministry.

Take a look, for example, at the Ontario Provincial Police. Back in 1979, 290 out of 5,193 people were able to speak a third language, which means 5.5 per cent of the force -- very good.

Mr. Nixon: How many could speak two?

Mr. Grande: Two to five languages, the question was here; only 28 were able to speak between two and five languages.

Mr. Nixon: You said three.

Mr. Grande: Anyway, out of the 5.5 per cent, 93 per cent of those were either constables, corporals or sergeants and only seven per cent had commissioned rank. So the OPP is certainly far from reflecting the cultural makeup of Ontario.

We should not kid ourselves; when the member for Yorkview brings forth this resolution and couches it in a studied format, he is really talking about power. I am sure the member for Yorkview is not naive enough that he would not know those people we may be talking about are the powerless in this province, so long as those people, those Tories, are on that side of the fence.

Mr. Shymko: Mr. Speaker, I would like to make reference first of all to some of the comments made by the member for Yorkview in the introduction to his resolution.

He stated at the very beginning he was disturbed it was so soon that he had to speak on this resolution, a resolution he termed "overwhelmingly sensitive." I agree with him. I think he is speaking much too soon on an issue that is definitely overwhelmingly sensitive, because he has not done his homework properly.

I do not question his genuine concern. There is no one in this House on either side who would in any way question the spirit, the intent and the concern of that resolution.

I would also like to refer to another statement he made; namely, that there is a lack of esteem for our ethnocultural minorities. I think the way his concern is expressed and the procedure he is suggesting smack precisely of that lack of esteem. I think it is a form of arrogance and perhaps snobbery to upstage an already operating task force which is studying precisely what the member for Yorkview is stating in his resolution.

I would like, therefore, since he has not done his homework --

Mr. Haggerty: Were you chairman of that task force?

Mr. Shymko: I have not been the chairman of that task force and I have nothing to do with that task force, but I would like to quote from a recommendation from the Ontario Advisory Council on Multiculturalism and Citizenship. It, by the way, in contrast to the so-called Canadian Consultative Council on Multiculturalism, is appointed by order in council. It is not a ministry-appointed body, as the federal one is. It is made up of 57 members, I would remind the member for Oakwood, who represent every minority group and region in this province. They are people who have vast experience and are genuinely concerned about the very topic that is raised in this resolution.

Mr. Grande: Talk about the Ontario Economic Council. That is what I want to hear about from you.

Mr. Shymko: If the member for Oakwood would allow me to read it. Thank you. A recommendation of June 20 and 21 of the standing committee on social development said, "That appointments to all provincial advisory councils, boards and commissions include representation from the province's ethnic, cultural and native communities as one of the criteria in the selection process, and that the Minister of Culture and Recreation compile and maintain a talent bank of qualified individuals from various areas of specialization and experience to facilitate this process."

5:10 p.m.

I know there was a response from the government obtained in November of last year, which said the following in response to that recommendation:

"Within the three basic types of agencies to which the Lieutenant Governor in Council makes appointments -- operational, regulatory, advisory -- there are requirements for representatives of the public at large as well as for persons with specialized background or expertise. Given an underlying objective to obtain the best possible appointee for each position, and given that the membership of each of these agencies is relatively small, it is not feasible that appointments can be made primarily to provide representation to any specific cultural community or group of citizens.

"Nevertheless, it is to be hoped individuals who are able to contribute to the broad objectives of any of the agencies and who also enjoy respect and trust within their communities will continue to be available to serve. To this end, the council is encouraged to maintain and periodically submit through the minister an inventory of qualified and interested persons whose availability will be considered as appointments are contemplated."

I would like to continue and mention that in November 1980, in the projected plans of the activities of the council to which I made reference, there was a resolution to establish four task forces. One of these task forces is the task force on equal opportunities and access headed at present by Dr. George Woo, a Canadian of Chinese origin. It includes such people as Mr. George Corn and Mr. Chris Antoniou. I certainly would like to hear whether they consider these individuals to be some kind of political appointments. If they speak with them, I think they will be quite surprised by the views of some of these members.

I would like to read the mandate of that task force. Since the mandate of that council is to review government policies and services, this is what the task force on equal opportunities and access consists of: "The task force will review: (i) government appointments to councils, boards, commissions and agencies in Ontario, (ii) government employment and promotion practices, and offer advice on their policies of multiculturalism and citizenship."

That is the mandate. Further: "The task force will attempt to review certain selected councils, boards, commissions, agencies and ministries on equal opportunities and access as to the policy of multiculturalism and citizenship, by studying reports and by interviewing. The recommendations will be formulated from interviews of both the involved groups and communities."

My impression is that in trying to upstage that task force --

Mr. Grande: Except that the minister will do nothing.

Mr. Shymko: They are qualified people. Mr. Speaker, do not let the member tell me they do not know what they are talking about; do not let him tell me they are not concerned about the issues. They are just as qualified as the elected members who would be part of a standing committee and I think we should give them a chance. Do not let the member make any insinuations that these so-called ethnics do not have the brains to come up with recommendations that would be any less intelligent or carry any less clout than the discussions, recommendations or conclusions of a standing committee. I think it smacks of a type of arrogance.

Members of the House will see there is a resolution by the member for Sudbury (Mr. Gordon) which states, "That in the opinion of this House the presently operating task force on equal opportunities and access, set up by the Ontario Advisory Council on Multiculturalism and Citizenship, which is studying provincial government appointments be extended full cooperation and assistance by government ministries and agencies and that the report of the task force be made public upon its completion."

I would have loved to see a resolution stating that once that report is tabled in the House it should be passed to a committee to study that recommendation, that would certainly make sense to me; but, Mr. Speaker, do not let the members opposite try to upstage a public task force made up of people who would like to have that type of esteem. Let us give them a chance to report and let us listen.

I would certainly agree to and support a motion by the member for Yorkview if it in fact would give these people a chance to report first and not upstage them for some political mileage that may be gained by this resolution.

Furthermore, I would like to point out that there is Bill 7, An Act to revise and extend Protection of Human Rights in Ontario. When one talks about appointments to senior service positions, if that bill passes it will ask every ministry to clean up its act. I quote part V, section 44: "This act," and I am reading it, "binds the crown and every agency of the crown." The honourable member should read the act, do some homework. "Where a provision in an act or regulation purports to require or authorize conduct that is a contravention of part I, this act applies and prevails..."

We are talking about the primacy of a human rights code that will make damned sure there will be appointments to senior civil service positions that will not be bigoted and will not discriminate. So the honourable member should do some homework before he stands up. I certainly do not question the sincerity of the concerns of both members, the member for Oakwood and the member for Yorkview, and I share those concerns.

There are two advisory councils on which I would like to see representation. Why is there no representation from minorities on the Ontario Advisory Council on Senior Citizens? There are so many ethnic senior citizens homes. These recommendations have been set, and I certainly agree with the honourable member. He spoke about the status of women. I think there is a place for some immigrant women on the Ontario Status of Women Council if they report on these concerns.

There is no question there is a need; but, Mr. Speaker, do not let any member insinuate that there is no attempt by this government to face that issue and to face those concerns.

Mr. Ruprecht: Mr. Speaker, I rise to support totally the resolution that has been presented to this House by my good friend the member for Yorkview. I thought I might present a little different view from that which the member for High Park-Swansea has indicated to this House.


Mr. Ruprecht: I hear some of my colleagues say his view is a bit distorted.

Mr. Shymko: The member for Parkdale has always co-operated with me. What has happened?

Mr. Ruprecht: That is right. Mr. Speaker, let us have the collaboration where it counts, not only in the speeches and empty promises for which this government has been known for such a long time -- in fact, over a period of 40 years; promises and proposals but little action in terms of the ethnocultural community.

We are now fairly tired of the recycled programs of proposals and papers that are coming out but which, when everything is examined, when the figures are in and when we count it all up, amount to one basic thing: a broken promise and a broken dream.

In recent years the federal government of Canada has taken the ethnocultural makeup of our country fairly seriously. Why? They have established a Minister of State for Multiculturalism. But what about the facts of this particular government? What has this government achieved in terms of multiculturalism? Can we find it anywhere? Is it written anywhere?

Mr. Mancini: Nowhere.

Mr. Ruprecht: Precisely; nowhere. It is hidden away in the bowels of this government.


Mr. Ruprecht: That is right: pretty far down, as some of my colleagues indicate in this area. It is hidden away in the Ministry of Culture and Recreation. You have to open up your book or books even to find it, and certainly you cannot even find specific policies that address themselves to some of the basic questions and problems that we on this side of the House indicated a long time ago.

5:20 p.m.

The provincial Ministry of Culture and Recreation, I would submit, has not done its job. Why? The ministry develops its own programs and policies with its own metaphors and images, and what do they say? They say, "Ours is a mosaic but, as opposed to what happens in the United States, we want to distinguish ourselves from the Americans. They are what is called a melting pot, robbing immigrants of their heritage, and we are the beautiful mosaic, basically appreciating different cultures and permitting the immigrant to develop his own culture."

Permit me, Mr. Speaker, first to examine our beautiful mosaic, create my own metaphor, and then proceed to outline the vision I have of a multicultural province and a multicultural Canada. I would like to outline a vision that we can all agree on, I think; a vision not tied to the tokenism of exotic food and strange dances and costumes, but to a new dynamic reality of equality of access to opportunity where it really counts.

First, let me look at the myth of the mosaic. What is it? It is a picture or pattern of small coloured stones set in a concrete surface. If we resemble the mosaic, does that mean ethnic citizens are locked in their existing social and economic positions, unable to move into the mainstream of society and unable to participate in the major decisions of this country? If we had a Progressive Conservative government continuing in power for the next 50 years, we would see that, probably as an institutional policy.

Professors Clement and Porter have documented evidence -- and I hope the member for High Park-Swansea is listening to this -- that less than two per cent of those classified as ethnic belong to the corporate elite of this country, yet they make up almost a third of the total population. The word "mosaic" is used to describe the condition where ethnic cultural groups maintain their cultural identity because they are alienated, isolated, oppressed, ostracized or manipulated.

Since the mosaic does not move and does not change, I would like to provide another metaphor that comes much closer to the vision I have. My metaphor is patterned after the good Roman fountain. I would like to call it the great Canadian fountain. Like most great fountains with streaming water and cascading fall, it is at once strong and stable, yet flowing and providing change and flexibility and mobility. That is my Canada; that is my province; it is strong in its sense of unity yet dynamic and flexible.

I want the Canadian fountain to reflect a new Canada. Multiculturalism should be reflected in our educational institutions. In the old Canada, Canadians of ethnic origin other than the mainstream were almost ignored in the schools. Their presence in Canada was usually overlooked and the scattered references to them in the history books suggest they can become good Canadians only if they submerge their ethnicity and their identity.

In a new Canada there should be a new spirit. The official history textbooks in our high schools should stress Canada's multicultural heritage. Prospective ethnic studies would be used as humanitarian tools in sustaining the self-esteem of these particular children, to give them a sense of self-worth and to help them overcome any sense of social inferiority that minority group status might imply.

I would like the Canadian fountain to reflect multiculturalism in the mass media. Perhaps the single most important contribution to national unity could have been developed by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. This great tool of unification has never been fully utilized; even after 40 years of existence the CBC has not fulfilled its mandate in reflecting the cultural complexity of Canada and this province. Even the recommendations of the Royal Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism have not been implemented. The recommendations of the member for High Park-Swansea have not really been implemented.

Recommendation nine of the royal commission states, and I quote, "We recommend that the CBC recognize the place of languages other than English and French in Canadian life and that the CBC remove its proscription on the use of other languages in broadcasting."

Recommendation 10 reads, "We recommend that the CRTC undertake studies in the field of broadcasting in other languages to determine the best means by which radio and television can contribute to the maintenance of languages and cultures, and that the CBC participate in these studies." The CBC could accomplish this by, one, showing programs that indicate the human aspect of cultural minorities; two, permitting some degree of cultural input in program policy production, and three, providing access to third-language programs in regions where warranted.

In short, the traditional historic forces in Canada are moving again towards confrontation, but the vocal third force, the multicultural community that we in this particular province should be very thankful towards, is not going to be letting the breakup of this country take place. I think we all understand what is essential in this province and this is why I support this motion. It is essential that we be seen to do justice, not only for those people who are in the mainstream of this country but for those ethnocultural minority groups in terms of our hiring practices.

We have no statistics to back up the member for High Park-Swansea when he said, "The proposals are that we are all going to be equal; we are all going to have access to all kinds of jobs. Don't worry, folks, it is all under control." We on this side of the House have listened too long to these kinds of promises that all is under control.

I listened yesterday to the Minister of Health (Mr. Timbrell), who indicated that all is under control in terms of psychiatric institutions. Yet we find nothing is under control; in fact there is evidence that indicates he is not doing his job.

Before the honourable member says to the member for Yorkview that he has not done his homework, I think he should do his homework. He should tell this side of the House whether he knows that two per cent of minorities are in the basic institutions in this country and that only two per cent can be found in the multinational corporations and in the leadership of this province. I think the honourable member should apologize for saying to the member for Yorkview that he has not done his homework.

The member for High Park-Swansea has not looked at the facts but continues with the government policy of making promises. As I stated before, Mr. Speaker, let us not mistake these promises for actual facts and let us not mistake these promises for actual statistics. The statistics are that what the multicultural groups need in this country is equality and access not only to information but to jobs.

Finally, we in the Liberal Party have quite clearly understood it is essential, not only now but in the future, to ensure that this proposal becomes law in this province so that no one can say we are ignoring multicultural minorities but that we are all equal.

Ms. Bryden: Mr. Speaker, I found merit in this resolution when I first read it because I certainly agree that appointments to agencies, boards and commissions and to high civil service posts should reflect the diversity of the province. I also thought its wording called for an end to tokenism; I thought it would ensure that appointments recognized that women constitute 51 per cent of the population of this province.

The previous speaker from the Liberal Party seemed to think it dealt only with multicultural appointments. I certainly think we do need to recognize that element of our society, but we have to recognize geographic regions and other minorities and see that our appointment system does produce a diversity that is consonant with the diversity of our province.

I had also hoped it meant an end to the shameful record of this government over 38 years in making patronage appointments, but my hopes were dashed when the member sponsoring the resolution said he was not naive enough to expect partisanship in appointments could be eliminated. I can understand how a supporter of the Liberal Party would come to such a conclusion after comparing what goes on in Ottawa over a similar period of time to what has gone on in Ontario.

However, I think that in accepting partisanship as a natural part of such appointments he has weakened the main thrust of his motion, which is to ensure that appointments are made on the basis of criteria other than partisanship. It was to be hoped that criteria could be developed that would represent the various social and ethnic groups and the geographical diversity of this province. Was it too much to hope that appointments would be of the best persons to serve the public interest rather than of people who were the choice of the government only, made behind closed doors and with no stated criteria?

5:30 p.m.

Over the past 38 years, the government has used appointments to agencies, boards and commissions as a sort of senate, a place for people who have been defeated; members, unsuccessful candidates or friends of ministers can find security on the government payroll. I submit this is a complete misuse of the boards and does not provide the public with the most-qualified servants on those boards.

If we took a blood test of all the appointees to these agencies, boards and commissions, the resulting test tubes would be predominantly Tory blue, and if a cross section were taken of the makeup, we would find very few women, very few ethnic people and not an entirely good geographic or occupational distribution.

Last fall, the procedural affairs committee addressed the question of how to open up the appointment process and make it more democratic. It accepted the principle that under responsible government in Canada, the cabinet should accept responsibility for the choices it makes. I do not quarrel with that, but the committee felt the responsibility would be better discharged if the process of selection were opened up.

It proposed that all segments of the Ontario public should have the opportunity to apply for membership to agencies, boards and commissions. It suggested the positions should be advertised in the Ontario Gazette and applications or nominations from interested groups should be processed by the Management Board of Cabinet. It thought management board might establish some criteria and then prioritize the nominees before forwarding them to the cabinet.

The committee further recommended, and I think this is a very interesting proposal, that the effectiveness of the criteria could be tested by an annual statistical analysis of all such appointments which would show the following: the number of applicants nominated by government members; the number of applicants nominated by opposition members; the number of applicants nominated by board members; the number of applicants not nominated, and the number of applicants nominated by interest groups.

When these statistics had been compiled and matched with the actual appointments, we would have a picture of how successful the government was in carrying out the intent of a resolution of this sort. If they showed the intent was not being carried out, the conclusion would be either that the recommendations of management board were being ignored and we were not getting the best and most representative people, or that there was a need for some particular affirmative action to seek additional candidates in various parts of the community and of our Ontario society. I think that is something that should be considered.

I intend to vote for this resolution although I think it should have included a proposal for implementation somewhat along the lines of the recommendation of the procedural affairs committee. I also think it should have flatly rejected appointments on a partisan basis. If we do not establish the principle that patronage appointments are completely unacceptable in a democratic society, then we are heading for a dictatorship where everything is in the hands of one small segment, which in the present situation received only about 25 per cent of the total vote.

With these changes, I think it would be a very good policy to have on our books. That is the reason why I will vote for it, hoping we can refine the idea later on when it becomes legislation.

Mr. Rotenberg: Mr. Speaker, how much time do I have?

Mr. Speaker: Five minutes.

Mr. Rotenberg: I do not think there is any question I am in favour of any motion that seeks to root out discrimination. I am in favour of everyone and anyone in this province being eligible to be appointed to civil service jobs and to agencies, boards and commissions. But I think this government's record on anti-discrimination is that we are pioneers on this continent in fair employment practices and fair accommodation practices legislation. We are one of only two provinces that supports entrenchment of a human rights code in our constitution; so I do not think this government has to be ashamed in any way of its record on nondiscrimination.

This motion disturbs me because it is contrary, if not to the letter to the spirit of the Ontario Human Rights Code. If this gets to a committee, are we going to ask each and every present and future appointee what is his or her ethnic background, origin and sex? That is contrary to our human rights code. As a member of the standing committee on procedural affairs, I do not want to sit on a committee, have people come before me and have to ask them what is their racial, religious, ethnic or sexual background.

I support nondiscrimination. Of course, everyone should be eligible, but everyone also must be qualified. Citizens from ethnic backgrounds certainly should be sought out and should be put on these boards. Despite what the member for Yorkview (Mr. Spensieri) says, his motion does call for a quota system. After all, what else is reasonable representation based on the ethnic and cultural makeup of the province, if it is not a quota system? He supports that. He supports what I cannot support -- reverse discrimination.

There have been a couple of cases in the United States. We all know about the Allan Bakke case in the United States where they tried to have a quota system. A person who was more qualified to get into medical school was denied this because some other group had to have equal representation based on origin. That was thrown out of the Supreme Court of the United States. We had a case in New York City where qualified teachers with many years of experience were fired so that new teachers with fewer qualifications, but from a minority background, could get the jobs.

I know the member for Yorkview does not mean this, but that is the kind of thing his motion is getting towards. Does he want the present appointees, no matter how qualified they are and how much experience they have, not to be reappointed? Are they to be fired to get this kind of representation, no matter what the qualification of the nominee or the appointee?

As far as senior civil servants are concerned, one of the problems is that many from these ethnic groups which have great representation of population at this time are fairly new to this country. One does not take a person and appoint him to the top of the civil service. One takes him and puts him in. I will take any member of the opposition over to my office in the Macdonald Block. I will stand him or her in the lobby to watch the elevators going up and the elevators going down and see the vast number of peoples from various visible minorities now in the employ of this province who are working their way up to senior positions.

He talks about the "we" when he talks about the third force in this country. I am just as much a part of that "we," of the non-English and non-French in this province, as the member for Yorkview is.

I am a little upset at the way this motion seems to be going. What is ethnic background? How does a person qualify? Is it first generation? Is it just an immigrant? Is it second generation? Is it third generation? A lot of people from ethnic backgrounds have changed their names.

An hon. member: You qualify.

Mr. Rotenberg: Of course I qualify, and so do you. A lot of people from these backgrounds now have a majority name. They have changed their names. What about a person of mixed parentage? Does he count or does he not count? I think we are carrying this to its logical conclusion.

What about certain ethnic groups? Let us use a mythical name. Let us say people from Krypton have a very small number of people in this province. Let us say they have more than their numbers justify, they now have one person on a board. Does that mean a second person from that ethnic group cannot be appointed to that board because they already have reasonable representation? Are we going to discriminate against small minorities, against more than one person on any one board or commission?

The member for Yorkview, I am sure, does not recommend that, but that is where his motion is leading.

Mr. Roy: I think you should be in cabinet.

Mr. Rotenberg: I think so too, but it is not my decision. I know my time is limited. Let me simply say this. There is a lot more I would like to say about this problem of quotas and reverse discrimination. I know the member for Yorkview is sincere. I will support any motion in this House to fight discrimination. I have been doing it all my life. But I will oppose any motion that calls for a quota system, that calls for reverse discrimination, that asks to list people by categories, ethnic background, race, religion or sex. I will oppose any motion that says we have to make that kind of list. That is contrary to everything I believe in.

5:40 p.m.

I will continue to recommend qualified Ontarians from all backgrounds, no matter what they are, from all races, all religions, all sexes.


Mr. Speaker: Order.

Mr. Rotenberg: I will continue to recommend all those people for jobs -- and they are getting them. But I will not support this kind of motion.

I know the member for Yorkview is new at this job. I know he is sincere in what he is thinking, but I say he has gone about this the wrong way. I think my colleague the member for High Park-Swansea (Mr. Shymko) has indicated very clearly that this government has a very definite policy of hiring people from every background without quotas, and it is already happening. That is the way it should go. I cannot support the motion the way it is worded.

Mr. Mancini: I am not sure how much time is left to be allocated to our party, Mr. Speaker.


Mr. Speaker: Order, please. Mr. Spensieri has the floor.

Mr. Spensieri: Mr. Speaker, when we entered this debate, we had intended this resolution to be essentially a fact-finding resolution. We have seen in our constituency work and in our involvement in the community that there is a perceived sense of lack of representation. When something is perceived, it is real enough in the minds of the people perceiving it.

All this study was intended to do was to provide an existing forum, namely, the procedural affairs committee, without additional expenditures on task forces and other bodies designed to take the excess from the Conservative benches and from the Conservative pool of available talent.

We wanted to take advantage of an already established committee for a fact-finding mission which would study those existing appointments to see if they truly reflected the ethnocultural and the social diversity. If members opposite have taken offence at this attack upon their exclusive preserve of making appointments as they choose, then I do not apologize for the attack because I think it is well merited.

If it turns out from this inexpensive study that the truth is that there are enough people on these boards and commissions and higher levels of the civil service to truly represent the diversity of this province, then nothing will have been lost. We will have simply spent a number of hours of this committee engaged in a very worthwhile task. It could be a soothing palliative for the residents of Ontario. But if it turns out, as I suspect, that the study will reveal an imbalance, a complete failure to reflect the realities of the composition of this province, then we can get into my friend's suggestion as to ways and means of rectifying the situation.

To put it into perspective, all I am asking for is a study by an existing body to determine what is perceived to be an imbalance. If there is no imbalance there, we will have lost nothing, but we will have gained a lot because we will have set straight a great portion of our society.


Mr. Speaker: Mr. Havrot has moved resolution 3.

Those in favour will say "aye."

Those opposed will say "nay."

In my opinion the ayes have it.

Call in the members.

Mr. Stokes: Mr. Speaker, on a point of order, if you will look at standing order 64, you will see you cannot even put the question before 5:50 p.m.

Mr. Speaker: Yes, you are absolutely right.

5:50 p.m.

Order, please. It now being 5:50, we will deal with Mr. Havrot's resolution

Those in favour will please say "aye."

Those opposed will please say "nay."

In my opinion the ayes have it.

Call in the members.

Hon. Mr. Gregory: Mr. Speaker, on a point of order: We did have the approximately five-minute bell before. I am just wondering why we are having another five-minute bell.

Mr. Speaker: Well, quite clearly, we began the bells before 5:50 and we were out of order. The rules provide for up to a maximum of five minutes. The bells do not have to ring for five minutes. If the members are satisfied and ready to proceed, we can now take the vote if they agree. We don't have agreement.

The House divided on Mr. Havrot's motion of resolution 3, which was concurred in on the following vote:


Andrewes, Baetz, Barlow, Birch, Boudria, Bradley, Copps, Cousens, Cunningham, Cureatz, Dean, Drea, Eakins, Eaton, Edighoffer, Elgie, Epp, Eves, Fish, Gillies, Gregory, Grossman, Haggerty, Harris, Havrot, Henderson, Hennessy, Hodgson, Johnson, J. M.;

Kells, Kennedy, Kerr, Kolyn, Lane, MacQuarrie, Mancini, McCaffrey, McCague, McKessock, McLean, McNeil, Miller, F. S., Miller, G. I., Mitchell, Newman, Nixon, Piché, Pollock, Ramsay, Reid, T. P., Robinson, Rotenberg, Roy, Runciman, Ruprecht;

Sheppard, Snow, Spensieri, Stephenson, B. M., Sterling, Stevenson, K. R., Taylor, G. W., Taylor, J. A., Timbrell, Treleaven, Villeneuve, Walker, Watson, Welch, Wells, Wiseman, Worton.


Breaugh, Bryden, Conway, Grande, Laughren, MacDonald, Mackenzie, Martel, Philip, Riddell, Samis, Stokes, Van Horne, Wildman, Wrye.

Ayes 72; nays 15.


The following members having objected by rising, a vote was not taken on resolution 4:

Andrewes, Baetz, Barlow, Birch, Cousens, Dean, Eaton, Eves, Gregory, Harris, Havrot, Henderson, Hodgson, Johnson, J. M., Kells, Kennedy, Kerr, Kolyn, Lane, MacQuarrie, McCague, McLean, McNeil, Miller, F. S., Mitchell, Piché, Pollock, Robinson, Runciman, Sheppard, Stevenson, K. R., Taylor, G. W., Timbrell, Treleaven, Turner, Villeneuve, Walker, Watson, Wiseman -- 38.

Hon. Mr. Wells: Mr. Speaker, before I give this statement, I wonder if I could ask you to consider something on a point of order. Since this is the first private members' hour, it is my understanding that the procedure for voting is that when the vote is called all members, either for or against, stand up together.

Mr. Nixon: Mr. Speaker, the reason we did not all stand up when the Tories rose in a body is that we believe it ought to be an emphasis on the private members' point of view. I am sure you would understand it, Mr. Speaker, whereas the House leader of the monolithic majority might not. However, the point is well taken and we will try to do better next time.


Mr. Speaker: Order.

Hon. Mr. Wells: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. I appreciate very much the co-operation of the House leader for the official opposition.


Hon. Mr. Wells: Mr. Speaker, pursuant to the standing orders, I would like to indicate to the members the business for the rest of this week and next week.

Tomorrow we will deal with legislation, second reading and third reading of Bill 31 and second reading of Bill 7, the human rights amendments. Monday, May 18, is a holiday, being Victoria Day. On Tuesday, May 19, in the afternoon there will be the following legislation: second readings, if needed, of Bill 7, followed by Bills 48, 20 and 2. In the evening the Treasurer will be bringing down his budget. On Wednesday, May 20, the administration of justice committee will meet in the morning.

On Thursday, May 21, in the afternoon we will have private members' ballot items 3 and 4 standing in the names of Mr. Foulds and Mr. J. M. Johnson. In the evening the House will consider a motion for adoption of the report of the Ontario Housing Corporation and local housing authorities. On Friday, May 22, we will continue with second readings of any legislation not completed on the afternoon of Tuesday, May 19.

Mr. Martel: On a point of order, Mr. Speaker: When the minister rose in his place with great vigilance on behalf of all the ayes and nays standing, I would have hoped in my absence he would have been as vigilant when the rules were being violated, as my colleague from Lake Nipigon (Mr. Stokes) was, and protected the integrity of the House.

The House recessed at 6:05 p.m.