Canada, House of Commons Debates, “Resolution Respecting Constitution Act”, 32nd Parl, 1st Sess (23 April 1981)

Document Information

Date: 1981-04-23
By: Canada (Parliament)
Citation: Canada, House of Commons Debates, 32nd Parl, 1st Sess, 1981 at 9437-9474.
Other formats: Click here to view the original document (PDF).

The HTML Text Below Has Not Yet Been Edited

This document has not yet been edited for mistakes. Help us out by correcting the text and mailing it as a text file to Your help will make the most complete word-searchable electronic repository of documents relating to the Canadian constitution. For more information consult our Be a Contributor page.

Read the unedited text

April 23, I981 COMMONS
Mr. D. M. Collenette (Parliamentary Secretary to Presi~
dent of the Privy Council): Madam Speaker, if question No.
2,036 could be made an order for return, this return would be
tubled immediately.
Madam Speaker: ls it the pleasure of the House that
question No. 2,036 be deemed to have been made an order for
Some hon. Members: Agreed.
Madam Speaker: Agreed and tabled forthwith.
Question No. 2,036—Mr. Dionne (Chicoutimi):
l, What is the (a) name (b) classification (c) salary ofcach supervisory person
in charge of the I981 Census?
2. ls there a program for the hiring of the commissioners and. ifso (a) who is
in charge and to whom is the person responsible (b) how many will be hired in
ouch province and at what salary?
3. What is the (a) language level (b) name (c) salary (d) classification of each
census managerial employee?
4. Will the expenses incurred for the ccnsus be audited and, ifso (a) who will
be responsible (b) will the audit report be submitted to the Auditor General and,
i|’so. on what date‘?
5. What is the (a) name (b) classification (c) salary (d) name of the
immediate supervisor, of the person in charge of public relations for the census?
6. Were consultants hired and, if so (a) by whom (b) what is the (i) name (ii)
reason for hiring (iii) salary (iv) additional benefit (v) qualification of each
7. Were advertising agencies hired and, ifso (a) which agencies (b) how were
they selected (c) what portion of the advertising budget will be allotted to (i)
Quebec (ii) other areas of French-speaking Canada?
Return tabled,
Mr. Collenette: I ask that the remaining questions be
allowed to stand.
Madam Speaker: The remaining questions shall stand.
The House resumed debate on the motion of Mr. Chrétien,
seconded by Mr. Roberts, for an Address to Her Majesty the
Queen respecting the Constitution of Canada.
And on the amendment of Mr. Epp, seconded by Mr. Baker
(Nepean~Carleton)-That the motion be amended in Schedule
B of the proposed resolution be deleting clause 46, and by
making all necessary changes to the Schedule consequential
The Constitution
thereto; and on the notices of amendments of Messrs. Knowles,
Baker (Nepean-Carleton) and Pinard.
Hon. Michael Wilson (Etobicoke Centre): Mr. Speaker,
when I spoke yesterday I referred to the amendments to the
resolution we had introduced on Tuesday evening and how
they were directed at bringing this country together, not
driving it apart as the current resolution seems to. I was
discussing the unilateral action being taken by the government
as wcll as some of the legal aspects, and why we believe
substantively this is wrong. This afternoon I want to discuss
the impact this action will have on the much broader political
element and on the rest of the country. ‘
Just before completing my remarks on the legal aspects, 1
shall refer to a statement made by former Prime Minister St.
Laurent in 1949. In explaining an amendment to the Constitu~
tion which affected only the federal sphere, he said:
It has been felt that the amendment giving Parliament the power to amend its
own Constitution—-
He was speaking about its own powers. Mr. St. Laurent
‘was all we could attempt to do without agreement with the representatives of
the ten Canadian provinces, and that \ve should do at once everything we had the
right to do.
In other words, to do only those things we had the right to
do within the sphere of our activity. It is clear that amend-
ments of a federal-provincial nature require the agreement of
both levels of government. The government has argued that
the proposed charter of rights would not involve any transfer
of powers between the federal and provincial authorities, It
would place certain limitations on both federal and provincial
governments and legislatures. In fact, it would remove powers
from provincial legislatures without their consent, and here I
am referring to education, minority language rights, civil
rights, mobility rights and some elements in the area ofjustice.
If the provincial legislatures are sovereign legislatures within
their own fields of jurisdiction, then the federal government is
asking Britain to remove powers from those legislatures with-
out their conscnt. I submit this is wrong. I would also point out
that the amending formula, whether arrived at unanimously,
the Victoria formula or the Vancouver formula, is also a
matter of federal-provincial concern.
I might just digress here on this question of the Victoria
formula. The government said quite recently that the Victoria
formula is the one which is being put before us through the
constitutional resolution. But the Victoria formula has been
changed on two different occasions in two different ways, so it
is not the Victoria formula which was agreed upon in 1971.
The government has made the point that the provinces did
agree at that time. They did, but it was agreement to a
formula different from that which is before us today. That is
the concern I am putting forward here. The resolution, either
through referendum or deadline, imposes on the provinces an
amending formula without their consent.
In the Liberal amendment which was put forward on Tues-
day evening, we have the incongruous situation where we have

DEBATES April 23, I981
The Constitution
to vote on one amendment, which includes the amending
formula and the reference to the supremacy of God. This
amendment is put forward by the same man who is complain-
ing that the provinces are trying to bargain fish for rights.
Now under the same amendment we have to make the distinc~
tion whether we are voting for this amending formula or for
the supremacy of God. Members of this House should not be
asked to vote on just one amendment, which is the case now.
Q (I520)
Mr. Evans: There was unanimous agreement on that.
Mr. Wilson: I would like to address the point the hon.
gentleman just raised. There was unanimous agreement, I
agree. I am making the point that we are asked to vote on two
matters which are totally unconnected. There is no linkage
between them. It is important that in future we divide these
two matters. Matters which have no linkage at all should be
voted on separately so that members on both sides of the
House—and I stress this—can express their point of view on
each of the individual items separately.
It is for reasons relating to the division of powers that the
Supreme Court of Canada must decide whether or not the
resolution should be passed and submitted to the British
parliament. It is for these reasons that I believe our party has
performed a very valuable service to this country by forcing
this government to acknowledge this discipline, since the
precedent that will be established by the Supreme Court will
be a historic one.
Let us not be bound only by the legal arguments and
precedents. In a sense, these legal considerations are less
important than the political considerations. The Prime Minis-
ter (Mr. Trudeau) has acknowledged that, but unfortunately
he has failed to recognize the true significance of the political
element under debate.
Let me again refer to the Premier of Ontario in I931. He
said “the confederation of the provinces of Canada” into the
country of Canada “was brought about by the action of the
provinces”. We must not forget that. We must also not forget
that the huge geographical mass that is Canada has developed
important traditions and a history which arc the foundation of
the country we live in today. The action of the government in
moving this resolution ignores that tradition. It disregards the
history that shapes the attitudes and aspirations of many
Canadians in distant parts of the country.
It is comforting to me as an Ontario member of Parliament,
as I am sure it is to members opposite who are from the
province of Quebec, to feel that our provinces will always have
a veto over any future constitutional change. But it is also very
degrading for those in other provinces for us to have this
special status. It perpetuates in a very permanent and divisive
way the sense of political power that has dominated this
country for 114 years. It robs these other provinces of the
possibility of achieving a more equitable balance in
It is not clear now what the impact will be, but over the next
few years the impact is going to become very clear to us as we
get further down the road in energy negotiations and negotia-
tions regarding federal-provincial shared-cost programs such
as medicare, higher education and pensions. If many provinces
feel they were taken advantage of in this constitutional resolu-
tion, they are going to be that much more difficult to deal with
when it comes to these very tough negotiations on energy and
shared-cost programs. I can see where provinces such as
Ontario and Quebec will suffer-not benefit—as a result of
this constitutional reform because of the problems we will be
facing when we get into those shared-cost negotiations.
I will try and illustrate what l have just said by a quote from
Henry Kissinger‘s book “The White House Years“. It is a
reasonably long quotation, but I will read it because there is a
lot of very sound thought in his words. I quote:
Resolutions conducted in the name of liberty more often than not rcfinc new
tools ofauthority, Academics may define human freedom by concepts of human
rights; historians understand that freedom resides not only in legal structures bur
in the general acceptance of institutions and the case of human rclationships. A
society not scourgcd by irreconcilable schisms can practice tolerance and respect
human dignity even in the absence of legally defined rights. Tolcrnncc is
inherent in its structure. Britain has never had a \vrittcn constitution; civil rights
are guaranlcctl by trndition.
This is the important point:
But a nation driven by factions, in which the minority has no hope of cvcr
becoming a majority, or in which some group knows it is perpetually outcast, will
sccm opprcssivc to some of its members, whatever the legal pretensions.
There is much wisdom in that paragraph and much for us to
learn in Canada today. I draw from it the following lessons.
First, it is essential for the Prime Minister and the government
to move quickly to heal the wounds which have resulted from
this debate. The west will feel permanently oppressed because
of the unilateral action which has been taken here and the
second class situation in which they have been placed. That
applies to thc east as well, but I think feelings are more strong
in the west right now. The unilateral action lies not just in
constitutional reform but in energy policy. That is going to be
a festering sore until corrective action is taken by this
This problem has been reinforced by the nature of the
amending formula, which now puts the government in a
position where it can move in on the resources which are the
heritage and foundation of the traditions of the western prov»
inces. That is a very divisive element facing us head on today.
The second lesson is that the rights we have been talking
about in this debate are the property of the people. Rights are
given to governments, not the reverse. Governments invariably
take rights away. We must be alert to this in the coming years
as we better understand this charter of rights. There will be a
temptation, since the charter has established certain rights in
black and white in a statute book in Ottawa, to believe that we
have a security blanket. We will feel that our rights are
protected because they are written down somewhere, but that
is wrong. The protection of our rights depends on the respect
and tolerance of this society.

7/mitt 23, 1981 commons
lt also depends on the control of government by the citizens
of this country. We must constantly be on guard against any
intrusions on those rights in any sense. We need to have
constant discipline and vigilance among ourselves to ensure
that these rights are not taken away. That viligance and
discipline will be the only lasting discipline we can be assured
of in this country. If we ignore these simple lessons, we do so
nt our own peril and at the peril of this country.
lt is ironic that in the past the roadblock to constitutional
reform has always been the inability of the provinces to agree,
or the desire of the provinces to demand more than the federal
government is prepared to give. The Prime Minister has made
this point on a number of occasions. Now the provinces are
ready to agree on historic matter, to patriate the Constitution
with a flexible amending formula. This would provide a sound,
flexible means for evolving the change which we in this House
and this country know must come to the Constitution as it now
Q (I530)
Now the roadblock to consensus on constitutional reform is
the very Prime Minister who has been so spiteful and deroga-
tory about the position of the provinces in the past. The shoe is
now on the other foot, but the difference is that he has the
power to bull through this constitutional resolution without the
consensus that is so necessary~unless the Supreme Court
rules otherwise.
The dangers to our country are great. Let me close by
quoting Edward Gibbon in 1788, from his masterpiece,
“Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire”:
The principles ofa frce Constitution are irrevocably lost when the legislative
power is nominated by the executive.
I have just one more paragraph, Mr. Speaker, if you will
bear with me.
We have a comparable situation in Canada today. The
balances and checks to power in our country have traditionally
been the official opposition and the provinces. Their power,
which is nominated, is being taken over by the executive, the
federal government, in this constitutional resolution through
closure and unilateral action. We are in danger of losing the
principles of a free Constitution before they have even been
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Hon. Allan J. MacEachen (Deputy Prime Minister and
Minister of Finance): Mr. Speaker, I rise with some diffidence
to participate in this debate in view of the many excellent
speeches we have heard, especially those by the Prime Minister
(Mr. Trudeau) and the Minister of Justice (Mr. Chrétien),
both of whom have expressed for so many of us the nature of
the Canada we are trying to build through this resolution. I am
pleased to have the opportunity to make some comments as the
debate proceeds to a conclusion, at least of this particular
stage of the constitutional resolution.
The Constitution
The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Current English defines
the word “canard” when used in English as meaning a false
report or a hoax. Since this debate began last fall a number of
canards have been perpetrated or concocted or, indeed,
hatched, if one uses the French meaning of the word “canard”.
These canards are untruths which are uttered, repeated and
then reshaped. Although untrue they take on an essence, a
certain validity through constant repetition, an independent
existence, so to speak, regardless of the truth which may not be
found in the statements. It is surprising that even though this
debate has lasted for months, the parliamentary joint commit-
tee has met, debate has proceeded in the House of Commons,
and bushels of commentaries have been written, these canards
still fly and find themselves repeated, even in the last days of
the debate.
Let me give a number of illustrations. We hear it often,
almost every day from the opposition and the press, that the
Constitution Act is the personal obsession of the Prime Minis-
ter. As recently as Wednesday, yesterday, the Toronto Globe
and Mail in an editorial said in a final sentence:
Canada cannot afford to have one man‘s views written in stone.
Yesterday during the question period the Leader of the
Opposition (Mr. Clark), following a well established habit,
when he was asking whether the Prime Minister would con-
vene yet another federal-provincial conference, said “I-Ie can
put his charter there”. Then in another part of the question
period he made a similar comment when he talked about
“Canada having to live with the unilateral decision of one
The hon. member for Wellington-Dufferin-Simcoe (Mr.
Beatty) objected to the distribution of the Prime Minister’s
speech in this debate to Canadians and suggested that taxpay-
ers’ money was being used “to promote the views of one man”.
I can only wonder at the motivation for the constant repeti-
tion of this theme. I wonder, and the people of Canada must
wonder, why it is that throughout the debate the fiction has
been constantly repeated that the Constitution Act, this great
enterprise which is engaging the attention of us all, is the-
obsession of one man. Why would The Globe and Mail write,
knowing better, that “Canada cannot afford to have one man’s
views written in stone”?
This is not a new tactic, certainly not on the part of the
official opposition. I sat in the House when a similar theme
was struck at the time of the flag debate; they labelled the
present Canadian flag as the “Pearson pennant”. Like the flag,
I believe the Constitution will become in the minds of Canadi-
ans a national symbol, not the Constitution of any one person,
not the obsession of the Prime Minister.
Whatever the motivation, the constant repetition by mem-
bers of the opposition that this great effort of Constitution
writing is the obsession of one man, is the work of one man, is
untrue and insulting. It is insulting, first of all, to members of
this party, members of the I-louse of Commons and the
millions of Canadians who have asked our party to take this
step we are now nourishing in this debate.

DEBATES April 23, 1981
The Constitution
I have only to look back at successive conventions of the
Liberal Party of Canada to illustrate to members of this House
and to Canadians that we have been at the forefront of
constitutional reform. For example, here is a resolution from
the I970 convention:
The Canadian Constitution should be repatriated and a suitable amending
formula incorporated into it.
This is from the I973 convention:
The government act immediately to amend the Canadian Bill of Rights to
ensure its supremacy over all federal legislation as it respects discrimination by
reason of race, national origin, colour, religion or sex; and that measures be
taken to have the said Bill of Rights entrenched in the BNA Act.
Ijust end on that note by quoting from the 1978 convention.
There were then 22 resolutions put forward, ranging in senti-
ment from “that Canada remain a confederation” to recom-
mendations for patriation, the insertion of essential rights and
a charter of individual human rights, and recommendations for
an amending formula and consultative mechanisms. So what
the Prime Minister is doing, and what we are all doing, is
carrying out the wish-—eertainly as expressed in our conven-
tions for many years but particularly over the last ten years——
to achieve the purposes which are contained in the proposed
Constitution Act.
Q (I540)
The repetition of this canard is not only insulting to me and
to members of my party but also to most members of the New
Democratic Party. It is insulting to the premier of Ontario. It
is insulting to the Premier of New Brunswick. It is an insult to
the groups of people who appeared before the joint House and
Senate committee asking us for a charter and asking that their
rights be additionally protected. This is not the obsession of
the Prime Minister but a claim on the future of Canada, as
they said before members of thejoint committee.
I find it offensive to have this canard repeated because I
know it to be untrue. I know the step-by-step decision-making
process of this government since the breakdown of the consti-
tutional conference in September. It certainly would have been
wonderful, and much desired and applauded by all of us, if we
had been able, in‘ the series of conferences in the summer and
climaxed in the fall, to reach an agreement with all the
Premiers. We wanted to put it all together. It did not happen.
Then the question was what to do. There were various
options which were open to the Government of Canada. They
must have been obvious to members of the opposition. We
discussed within our party and within our caucus these various
options. We could, as the Premiers seem to have proposed-—
belatedly——have selected the option of patriation and an
amending formula. That would be one option. We could have
added to that option, for example, minority education rights in
the provinces. That would have been an enriched option. Or we
could have taken a further big step and included in the
package the charter of human rights. It was not the Prime
Minister who said in the cabinet or in the caucus, “I want my
personal place in history; give it to me by including a full
Mr. Stevens: How did he put it?
Mr. MacEachen: I will answer the hon. member for York~
Peel (Mr. Stevens). It was the overwhelming force of the
opinion in the cabinet, later supported overwhelmingly in the
Liberal caucus-—
Some hon. Members: I-Iear, hear!
Mr. MaeEachen: fithat said to the Prime Minister: “This is
a historic opportunity; let us not miss this opportunity; let us
go first class”.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. MacEachen: I must say that I am proud of the Prime
Minister. I am proud because he listened to the will of his own
party as expressed in conventions, in the cabinet and in the
Liberal caucus. He is now leading us and, unhappily and
unfairly, taking the flak as the leader of the Liberal party in
carrying out the wishes which have been expressed to him by
members of his party.
Mr. Stevens: Poor Pierre.
Mr. MacEachen: I think members of the opposition in the
Conservative party should have more respect for their own
party and for the leader of their party in the province of
Ontario, Mr. Davis. Is it his obsession‘! Is he lining up with the
Liberal government because he believes what we are doing is
the obsession of one man? Not at all. ]—Ie is doing it because he
believes it is necessary for the future of Canada. Let me quote
Mr. Davis.
Mr. Stevens: Tell us about the bank rate.
Mr. McDermid: Tell us about Claude Ryan and his stand.
Mr. Stevens: I-Iow about the 17.4’!
Mr. MacEachen: I find it very interesting that suddenly
members of the Conservative opposition erupt. I must be
cutting close to the bone. I must say that their bones are very
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. MacEachen: Last week the Premier of Ontario, the
I-Ion. William Davis, commenting on the results of the meeting
here in Ottawa of the other eight Premiers, said:
As a Canadian and as zt Conservative, I believe that individual citizens must
have basic protection from the unfair use of power by government, through
means of an entrenched charter of rights.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. MacEachen: Then he made what I thought was an even
more important statement because it seems, in a sense, to
clarify the difference between him and another group of
Premiers, the group of eight. I-Ie said that the federal proposal
protects fundamental freedoms “in a way that is basic to my
view of this country”. It is basic to our view of this country as

Zlpril 23. 1981 COMMONS
it enters the eighties that we must take steps to protect
fundamental freedoms.
When the Prime Minister stands up tonight to vote in
support of the resolution on the proposed Constitution Act,
l98l, he will not be standing up in this House of Commons
alone. He will be supported by all his Liberal supporters on
this side of the House and by members of the New Democratic
Party who freely have made up their minds. He will also be
upplauded by many millions of Canadians who are asking that
this step be taken.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. MacEachen: So much for that canard.
l want to mention another which has been developed in this
tlebate, and it has been repeated so often that it has taken on a
life of its own, namely, that a majority of Canadians are
opposed to what we are doing in putting forward and advanc-
lug this resolution. Well, I do not find anyone knocking on the
tloor of Parliament asking that we stop this process. I do not
find anyone knocking on my door in my province asking that
this government stop what it is doing.
Most polls which have been taken on this subject have been
distorted. They have been unfairly interpreted to say that the
views of the Canadian people represent opposition, when what
they really do is express a preference most of us have and most
of us share, namely, that it would be better if it were possible
to make these advances with the consent of all the provinces.
The people of Canada believe that, I believe that, the Minister
of Justice believes that and so does the Prime Minister. But
what one prefers is often not possible. Let us not continue to
repeat the falsehood that the majority of the people of Canada
tire against what we are doing in this constitutional effort. I
enuld quote so many polls, but this would take up a lot of time
that is not available to me. I find it very interesting that
recently the Premier of Ontario, who is a strong supporter—-
Q (1550)
An hon. Member: And a fellow traveller.
Mr. MaeEachen: Someone opposite said that he is also a
fttllow traveller. He is a supporter of this package. He went to
the polls explicit with the people of Canada about his support
for the federal package, and he achieved a majority which had
tilinled him on two previous occasions.
Sonic hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. MacEachen: I do not think hon. members opposite find
tlutt very unappetizing to swallow. Just yesterday we intro-
tluced into the House of Commons two new members of
l’in’li:\ment, both of whom are sitting on this side of the House,
one from Ontario and the other from Prince Edward Island.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. MaeEacl’|en: The people of those constituencies in two
widely separated provinces had an opportunity to say “No;
stop!” One can imagine that if we had lost those byelections
The Constitution
the Leader of the Opposition would have said, “I now have a
clear indication that what you are doing is wrong and
Yesterday we received the results of the Gallup poll which
was taken at the height of the hijacking of this Parliament,
when members of the official opposition were doing everything
possible to bring to the attention of the people of Canada that
what we were doing was wrong and dishonourable and that we
were breaking up the federation of Canada. On the very day
that they were screaming out their questions of privilege in the
House of Commons, the people responding to the polls were
saying “We prefer the Grits. We prefer them more than we
did in the last election.”
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Macliachenz I say let us not perpetuate the mythology
that what we are doing is being opposed by the majority of the
people of Canada.
I find it amazing that there is another canard being promul-
gated, and that is that the Parliament of Canada, by proceed-
ing without the consent of the provinces, is establishing a new
principle of confederation, or introducing a new principle into
the Canadian federation. The Premiers are urging that nothing
be done without their consent. It is not the Parliament of
Canada or the Government of Canada which is attempting to
build into our federation a new principle; it is the Premiers and
their supporters who are now trying to create the view that the
only way Canada can proceed is through some form of consent
by the provinces.
On a radio program the other evening the hon. member for
Yorkton-Melville (Mr. Nystrom) talked about the double
majority being the way to proceed. It may be his preference
but he will not find much support in the precedents and the
law of Canada. Yesterday the hon. member for Etobicokc-
Centre (Mr. Wilson) repeated the same line. I refer both hon.
members to the speech made by the Parliamentary Secretary
to the President of the Treasury Board (Mr. Joyal), the
co-chairman of the joint committee, who in my opinion gave
one of the most lucid presentations that I have ever heard in
the House of Commons. It is a model of clarity, information
and analysis. He said:
Indeed, the Canadian Parliament is not required to consult the provinces and
get their agreement before submitting a request to the British Parliament. The
Chief Justice of the Manitoba Court of Appeal explained this quite well and
substantiated it in an elaboratejudgmcnt given on February 3 last. In any case,
long before this judgment was given, Canadian experts had already recognized
this fact.
If hon. members want another authority, I refer them to a
former prime minister of Canada, the late Right Hon. R. B.
Bennett, who spoke in the House of Lords in 1946 and made a
most revealing statement, the frankest exposition on this point
that I have read. He said:
There has been a good deal of discussion about an amendment of the
Constitution being a political measure.
He might have added to that if he had heard this debate. I
continue the quotation. He said:

DEBATES April 23, l9$l
The Constitution
Canada is the only one of the dominion: in which a party majority can amend
the Constitution. They cannot amend it directly, but they do it indirectly,
because we have agreed that we will consent to pass any legislation that they
may petition to have passed by this Parliament.
He is speaking there about the British parliament. Let us
not have continued the repetition that we are creating a new
principle by doing wltat we are doing. It is they who ask us to
do otherwise who fly in the face of law and precedent, as the
Parliamentary Secretary to the President of the Treasury
Board said. But we will know more about that later on.
l have only a minute or two left, Mr. Speaker. I must say
that I was somewhat taken, impressed, disappointed, whatever
word you might wish to use, when I observed what happened
at the meeting of the eight Premiers in Ottawa last week. I
have respect for the Premiers; I know most of them. But I
must say that my respect does not carry to the point of
agreement with their points of view, and the Premiers in their
conclusions of last Thursday revealed how deep the chasm is.
They revealed how deep the division of opinion is between
them and the majority of members of Parliament as to what
the future of this country ought to be. If one wanted a clear
signal that they have a somewhat different view of the future
of the country and the society which ought to be built in our
view, then just contemplate their conclusions of last Thursday.
The process that we have been going through has been not
only contentious but enriching in many ways, certainly to me,
as I have observed views being expressed on both sidcs of the
House. I recall one particular incident when the Minister of
Justice reported on the results of the joint committee of which
the hon. member for Provcncher (Mr. Epp) was a distin-
guished member. He told us about the results of the hearings
of the committee, when representatives of Canadian women
came forward and said that they wanted better protection in
the Constitution. He told us about the aboriginal people, the
Indian, the Inuit and the Metis who came forward. He told us
about the handicapped and other ethnic groups who, as he
said, are not part of the two main streams of our country. They
all came forward and said that they wanted special recogni-
tion. They said “We want our rights and our place to be
protected in the future”. They were making their claim on
their inheritance as Canadians. That was rather important.
Then the Minister of Justice in his report—and members
opposite must remember what he said—stated that the charter
makes specific reference to the multicultural nature of our
society. Well, he was taking in all the groups and the commit-
tee took in all the groups, giving recognition to even poor Scots
like myself; we were also included in that multicultural herit-
age. It seemed to me to be a rather magnificent demonstration
of what was at work in the committee and what the House was
Q (I600)
I cannot forget reading the testimony given before the
committee by the representatives of the National Association
of Japanese Canadians. It was pretty touching and moving
when they told us about their experiences for 70 years in
Canada about when they had to pay taxes without even the
right to vote. They went on to say:
Surely some guarantee of human and civil rights is mandatory in the light of
the experience of Japanese Canadians.
Members of the committee must have heard their voice
when they said:
A charter of rights entrenched in the Constitution to prevent what we have
gone through is the least that Canada can do to make amends for what has
happened to us and to ensure that such injustices will never be repeated again.
Why do I use such references to illustrate the difference in
the concept of what Canada ought to be between the Premiers
and those of us on this side of the House? Why do I mention
what the Minister of Justice said‘? I mention it because
Premier Lyon and Premier Bennett told us that at their
meeting, when they were trying to reach an accommodation,
they did not even discuss the charter of human rights.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Right I-Ion. Joe Clark (Leader of the Opposition): Mr.
Speaker, it is interesting to find the Deputy Prime Minister
and Minister of Finance (Mr. Macliachen) involved in debate.
He usually comes in when the government is in trouble. I have
heard the Deputy Prime Minister speak very aggressively, very
much on the offensive and very much on the defensive. I find it
hard to rccall a time when his speech was more lined with
defensive comments than was the case in the remarks he made
in the House today.
They have a great deal to be defensive about. We are
meeting now at the end of one phase of this debate. I must say
for my party that we enter this phase of the debate with some
pride, because we have waged a fight which has kept this
question Canadian. The plan of the Prime Minister (Mr.
Trudeau) was to have this measure out of Canada by Christ-
mas, to have it decided in Britain before Canadian courts
could consider its legality and before Canadian opinion could
consider its propriety.
As we all know, this Parliament or this institution exists to
enact and improve good measures and to stop or delay bad
measures. My party and I are proud of the work we have done
in having Parliament delay and improve this resolution.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Clark: It is very clear that this most basic Canadian
question about our own Constitution remainsin Canadian
control today only because the Progressive Conservative party
stood and fought in the House of Commons and in the
country. We have not yet won the war to protect Canada’s
federal institutions, although we have made it possible for that
war to be won, but we have demonstrated the strength of
Canada’s parliamentary institutions. The government used
every available instrument, from media manipulation to dis-
honesty about our diplomatic exchanges, to bulldoze this
measure through. This party, with no help at all from the New
Democratic Party, proved that Parliament is strong enough to
stop bad measures being forced down the throats of the people
of Canada.

April 23, I981 COMMONS
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Clark: There is one other aspect of this phase of the
debate of which I am particularly proud. At a time when
Quebec is questioning whether it can find a full future in
Canada, the Progressive Conservative party, whose greatest
strength is outside Quebec, defended and argued the cause of
Quebec when its own elected members chose to be silent.
Quebecers have reason to question the wisdom of trusting
the Liberals, but, more important, they have proof now that
Canadians other than Quebecers, from Alberta, Ontario, New-
foundland and elsewhere in our Canadian family, share and
are prepared to fight for the federal principles which are
essential to the survival of Quebec and Canada. The Liberal
party may betray Quebec, but Canada will not betray Quebec.
I deeply regret the discipline which the Liberal party has
forced upon the elected members of Quebec who, unfortunate-
ly, do not speak on behalf of that province in this House. Only
the Liberal member for Montmorency (Mr. Duclos) has had
the courage to put the interests of his province ahead of the
instructions of his party.
Mr. Lalonde: Shame!
Mr. Clark: The minister says shame. Indeed it is a shame
for the members from the province of Quebec to abandon their
electors just as the Liberal members have abandoned the
electors of the province of Quebec.
What an ordeal for the people of Quebec who see the
members they have sent to Ottawa to represent their interest,
who see their own members remain silent or behave like sheep
instead of rising against a measure which threatens the federal
system, a system which is so important for Quebecers and for
the province of Quebec. Is it not ironic that all members of the
National Assembly decried this measure, that all the provin-
cial parties denounced this measure? And yet the members
who were sent to Ottawa to make sure that federalism would
enable Quebec to grow within the Canadian family, those
members do not utter a single word against a measure which
undermines federalism, genuine federalism.
I recall that the Minister of Justice (Mr. Chrétien) used to
entertain thoughts about going to the province of Quebec to
win a provincial election. Well, he has done that; he and his
Prime Minister, by pushing this measure through, have gone to
the province of Quebec and have won an election. They won it
for Rene Levesque and against Claude Ryan.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Clark: It is well for us to review what is at issue here.
This resolution proposes bringing our Constitution home; that
is a goal which everyone supports. It proposes a means to
change the Constitution when it is at home, and everyone
agrees that we need an amending formula, an amending
The Constitution
process. It proposes a charter of rights, which all parties in
Parliament support. Those are the goals.
But the issue is that the government has determined to
pursue those goals in a way which ignores Canadian history,
which abandons Canadian practice, which may violate
Canadian law, and which very seriously threatens the future of
a united Canada.
Q (I610)
The Supreme Court of Canada will decide the narrow legal
question, although it is worth noting that the Liberal govern-
ment tried every trick in the book to keep that Canadian
question from going before a Canadian court. The legal ques-
tion is important and it is legitimate. My colleagues and I are
pleased that the government failed in its attempt to deny
Canadian courts the right to decide the Canadian legal ques-
tion. However, the court is only part of the process. The court
can tell us whether this resolution is legal according to past
law and past practice; but only we in this Parliament can
decide whether it is good law and good practice for the future
of Canada.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Clark: That is a decision for legislators, not for judges.
The Supreme Court will decide whether the federal govern-
ment now has the power unilaterally to change the Constitu-
tion in areas of direct provincial jurisdiction. Our decision in
this Parliament is whether we want future federal governments
to have that power, for that will be the effect of passing this
resolution in its present form and through the present process.
The Parliament of Canada will be asserting, as the newest
and strongest precedent for future courts, that we have the
power exclusively and arbitrarily to change any parts of the
Constitution we want to change. That is the underlying princi-
ple of this measure and of this process, and it rips the heart out
ofa federal system.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Clark: That is not just my view. That is also the view of
distinguished Canadian Liberals, who sit among other places
in the Senate, where they exercise more freedom to speak their
minds. I want to draw to the attention of the House and read
into the record the comments, for example, of the former
Liberal leader in the province of Ontario, Senator Andrew
Thompson, who said on March 2, l98l:
Putting it bluntly and simply, my question is: are we keeping our word; are we
breaking the rules by which we agreed to govern ourselves in the federation? No
matter how noble and worthy the purpose of this resolutionwand I believe that
what we are trying to achieve is wcrlhy~the end does not justify the means.
Here is what former Liberal minister the Hon. Jean-Paul
Deschatelets had to say, and I quote:
This unilateral project goes against and negates everything in which l have
believed, which l have supported and endorsed in all my years in Parliament. If
it remains in its present form, l shall not be able to support it.

DEBATES April 23, 1981
The Constitution
in my opinion, this unilateral proposal threatens to break up, for all practical
purposes, the balance of powers which has always existed between our two levels
That is the opinion of a Liberal Senator, Mr. Deschatelets.
Then I quote the remarks made last month by Senator
George Mcllraith, who served with such distinction for so long
in this House, including as House leader on the government
l have served in Parliament now for the past -tl years. During that time the
governments have been headed by live Prime Ministers. l have been a Liberal all
my adult life. All of the political leaders l noted earlier in my remarks were
leaders I respected and admired. With the exception of Sir Wilfrid Laurier and
the Honourable Hugh Guthrie—whom I merely met but could not say I knew—
they were friends of mine. Were they all wrong? Were all the leaders of the
Liberal party in the past three-quarters ofa century totally wrong, or could it be
that our present government is wrong in taking a diametrically opposed course of
action to the one all those leaders thought necessary and proper? Could it be
that the present government is wrong in this attempt to make these basic
amendments to our Constitution unilaterally, with a bare majority in the federal
l want patriation but 1 cannot acquiesce in the wrong and dangerous course
\v<: are being asked to follow in most of the proposed legislation before us. In the exercise of my responsibilities as a senator, l have no alternative but to votc against this resolution in its present form. Thus spoke Senator Mcllraith. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Stevens: A great Canadian! Mr. Clark: The Prime Minister has not listened to the Liberals in the Senate. He has not listened to the member of Parliament for Montmorency-Orleans (Mr. Duclos). He has not listened to Claude Ryan. He has not listened to Gordon Gibson. He has not listened to the long list of others in his party who are offended by what he is saying and what he stands for. He has not listened to the elected premiers of the eight provincial governments who oppose his measure. He rejected our proposal in the fall to bring the Constitution home with the Vancouver formula. He rejected our proposal to split the resolution and to send the charter to the provinces for consideration. Now he indicates that he will accept none of the amendments we proposed to improve the charter of rights and respect the federal nature of Canada. Instead of treating the Constitution as though it belonged to the whole country, he has acted as though it is his alone, to change in ways that are his alone to choose. Some hon. Members: Shame, shame! Mr. Clark: The Liberal party lets him get away with it, as does the NDP, sitting complacently back while the constitu- tional measure which is one man’s obsession is forced through this Parliament. I do not begrudge the Prime Minister his place in history, but I would like him to leave us a country to live in when he is gone. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Clark: It is that country which his measure and his method deeply threaten. He has one more opportunity now to prove that his concern is for the country and that his motive is national and not merely narrow and personal. [Translation] The Prime Minister now has a chance to do his duty as a Canadian statesman. He has at least six weeks ahead of the Supreme Court ruling, six weeks in which to try to achieve a consensus. Once the Supreme Court decision is handed down and if the latter asserts the legality of the resolutions, at least as far as its format is concerned, the order of the House will provide the Prime Minister with two days of debate in the House, followed by speedy action in the Senate, and this will conclude the consideration of this proposal by Parliament. This time frame has been set, and we accept it. But it also allows the Prime Minister, without any delay whatsoever, to follow- up on the premiers’ initiative. In September, the ten premiers made him an offer. He failed to make a counterproposal. There are now eight premiers who are proposing a detailed amending formula. He does not have to accept it in toto. But we consider it a basis for serious round of discussions, in the same way that we consider the government resolution, including the charter of rights with the amendments we propose, as a basis for serious and reason- able discussions. I maintain that the Prime Minister of Canada has the duty to call a meeting and the right to draw up its agenda. Why will he not call such a meeting’! Why will he not respect the federal system? What is he afraid of? I-le has just been rejected by the people of Quebec. ls he afraid to face the Premier who has just served him a good thrashing? The Prime Minister of Canada should not be afraid of such a meeting. If it does not lead to any agreement, he could then follow up on his resolution unless the court finds it illegal. And if there is an agreement on the procedure to follow with respect to a charter of rights, an amending formula, and perhaps the application of Section I33 to Ontario, he and Canada as a whole will have gained enormously. The Prime Minister should put aside his personal vanity and take advantage of this opportunity to gain so much for Canada. He has the absolute obligation to call a first minis- ters‘ conference. [English] We now have before us amendments from the three parties. I want to deal very briefly with the very skimpy amendments put forward by the Liberal party, by the government. Of course, they come in two batches: the official ones under the name of the President of the Privy Council (Mr. Pinard), and the unofficial Liberal amendments in the name of the New Democratic Party. We want to congratulate the NDP on agreeing with our wording on equality for women in the amendment. mi: 23, test commons DEBATES 9445 Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! 4 (mo) Mr. Clark: Of course, we shall be voting for that, even though it is tied to a so-called “aboriginal rights” clause which merely requires the provinces to apprOVe amendments to ltboriginal rights. What of the official Liberal amendments? Because of our nrntistance and insistence, particularly that of the hon. member for Provencher, they are grudgingly putting the word “God” in the preamble to the charter. Not with the eloquent and Inspiring wording from the Diefenbaker Bill of Rights, with accompanying references in that document, but not in this one, to “the dignity and worth of the human person and the position of the family in a society of free individuals and free institutions”, but instead, words inserted as an afterthought. This is what I find especially reprehensible: they are saying we enn have a little bit of God if we accept their amending formula. They ask us to join them in making 70 per cent of the people of western Canada—the population of Alberta and B.C.— Irrelevant so far as constitutional amendments are concerned. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Clark: They want us to join them in making those provinces third class in exchange for a reference to God. There is a better way to reflect the supremacy of God in the Constitution of Canada, and that is to accept the amendments In the name of my colleague, the hon. member for Nepean- Curleton (Mr. Baker). That package respects both God and the federal system. That is the way we should proceed in the Canadian Parliament. The amendments which we put forward give proper recogni- tion to the sovereignty of God, the worth of the person and, which is very important, the position of the family in a society of free individuals. The government rejects that approach. It rejects enshrining the right of Canadians to enjoy property. It wants to allow the courts to decide conscience questions for Canadians. It wants the courts to be free to bar Canadians from deciding laws on capital punishment and abortion. For months the government has talked about the tyranny of unanimity and has practised the tyranny of unilateral action. In the amendments we have put forward, we have offered them a reasonable definition of consensus which we would join with them in supporting, a definition which includes seven provinces representing at least half the people of Canada, neting in concert with the Parliament of Canada. But the government is not interested in that. It is not interested because it does not want a Constitution or a charter of rights that anybody but the Liberals write. It deliberately keeps the charter hostage to a divisive process. It is trying to trade off rights for an amending formula. When the eight premiers met in Ottawa they all dropped their packages and their conditions. The Liberal government does not want to drop its conditions. A Quebec government The Constitution finally agreed to patriation but the government says, “who cares?”. The government wants its agenda in its way, in its time. We will have nothing to do with a process of that kind which is wrong. It is a process which is deeply wrong and is deeply divisive. This government’s preference and guiding star is to proceed unilaterally. It rejects proposals which respect the history and nature of Canada. The government invents new phrases to condemn the endur- ing realty of a diverse Canada. If “checkerboard” means that different standards apply at different times, at different places, that has always been the casein Canada. That, indeed, was the political principle that allowed medicare to begin in this country. The same principle allows Quebec to enjoy a different pension plan, allows Newfoundland to have a school system different from that of British Columbia, and Ontario a system different from that of Quebec. Some of those differences date from before confederation; others, such as the Newfoundland school system, were specific conditions of entry into confedera- tion. Of course there are differences in Canada. That is our history. That is our nature. To condemn it is to condemn Canada. Some hon. Members: I-Iear, hear! Mr. Clark: Indeed, one of the most alarming elements of this highly centralist Liberal position is the underlying assumption that difference is dangerous. The Fathers of Con- federation belicved the opposite when they wrote a Constitu- tion which protected local identities. So did the British parlia- ment well before confederation when it wrote laws which guaranteed the distinct identity of the French Canadian socie- ty in Quebec. So do those of us who today celebrate the excitement of multiculturalism, which is the incarnation of difference or respect for diversity, or those of us who cheerful- ly work to learn a second official language. The Prime Minister and his colleagues like to suggest that they speak for Canada against the provinces. In fact, they speak for official Ottawa against Canada. The Prime Minister and the little clique that advises him will sometime learn, I hope, that there is a Canada beyond Ottawa, a Canada beyond official bilingualism, a Canada beyond a charter of rights. It is a Canada of diversity and emotion, of innovation and of proud identities. Those Canadians cannot all be shaped into the same mould. Mr. Speaker, they should not be, because were they so shaped they would lose the essence and value of this great and unique nation. Our speeches are limited to 30 minutes in this debate, but there is one brief theme that I want to touch on because this has been one other common theme in our history. I refer to the need to have a national feeling that unites us. We know that laws are not enough to unite Canadians; there has to be a feeling of nationality. It is one of the most bitter of ironies that the means the Liberals have chosen with which to impose the centralist view has weakened the Canadian feeling of common nationality. A Constitution which should have been the source of Canadians coming together and growing proud together has instead become the source of division in this country. That is 9446 COMMONS DEBATES April 23, I981 The Constitution entirely the fault of the way in which the government has proceeded. Some hon. Members: I-Iear, hear! Mr. Clark: When I hear the Prime Minister speak, as he does at length, and when I hear other members on the govern- ment side speak, one word recurs and that is the word “fail- ure”. The Prime Minister speaks of 54 years of failure in constitutional negotiations. He speaks of failure with the premiers. Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister can find failure if he seeks it. The point that must be made is that we have also succeeded dramatically in this country. This has been a coun- try of success when governments sought success. It has been a country of agreement when governments and leaders sought agreement. _ We have faced much more complex questions in the past than some of the questions we face today regarding the Constitution. It was a far more complex matter for the Diefen- baker government to negotiate with the Sauvé government, a means by which federal funds could be made available to the province of Quebec. Yet that was done, overcoming decades of suspicion and reluctance, because there was a mutual will to make the federal system work. It was far more complex to introduce and have accepted a system of medicare across the country, but that was done. And the Canada Pension Plan was accepted across the country because there was determination to seek agreement to go forward. Therefore, when the former government in Ottawa was prepared to seek agreement on a national energy policy, we were able to achieve agreement, something which has eluded this government for 22 months. O (1630) Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. McDermid: The Prime Minister laughs. He has not been able to do it. Mr. Clark: There is a secret to this. There is bound to be failure when a government ignores the nature of this country and runs counter to its nature. We have succeeded in Canada when we have respected the nature of Canada. This proposal fundamentally attacks the basic federal nature of Canada. Even if it is upheld in the courts, it will create a legacy of bitterness and division. Mr. Trudeau: What about the flag? Mr. Clark: It is not necessary to go this way. We can bring our Constitution home. We can have a charter of rights. We can have an amending formula, and we can have it by agree~ ment if we work within the Canadian tradition instead of abandoning it and if we follow the Canadian way to agreement. I urge the government to accept those amendments and, just as importantly, to accept the federal spirit which inspires those amendments. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Roland de Corneille (Eglinton-Lawrence): Mr. Speak- er, before I commence my remarks on the Constitution in general and on the amendments, I would like to say in immediate rebuttal to the Leader of the Opposition (Mr. Clark) that I was disappointed that he chose to denigrate and minimize the inclusion of an amendment to the Constitution by the government which calls for the inclusion of a reference to God. I did not think it was necessary for the Right Hon. Leader of the Opposition to try to turn this into a partisan, political issue. Some hon. Members: Shame! Mr. McDermid: Don‘t be so hypocritical. Mr. de Corneille: Therefore, I must set the record straight for the public. Also I want to set the record straight for Hansard. It is bothering members of the opposition at the present time to have this brought to their attention. Nonethe~ less, I must persist in pointing out that there is a reference to God in this Constitution, one which is being proposed by the Liberal government. This is not the first time the Liberal government has had a decision to make concerning a reference to God. Only recently, as a matter of fact, in the new text of “O Canada” the government departed from tradition and asked through this hymn: “God keep our land glorious and free!” This party proposed those words. Those words were a departure from the traditional text of “O Canada”. Incidentally, the Leader of the Opposition speaks about reference to God in the Diefenbaker Bill of Rights. It is ironic that the original text of the Diefenbaker Bill of Rights had no reference to God. In fact, it was a Liberal member of this House at that time, the hon. member for Windsor, who proposed that these words be included in the Diefenbaker Bill of Rights, and that proposal was accepted by the opposition. That is how these words in the proposal from the Tories were accepted—because of a suggestion made by a Liberal member of Parliament. There was another effort on the part of the government to include God in the proposed Constitution. The suggestion was made at last September’s conference when representatives of the federal and provincial governments met to discuss the future of the Constitution. The Liberal govern- ment proposed an amendment to include a reference to God in the preamble to the Constitution. I suggest it would be better if we did not try to be pious or pretend that we are superior. Mr. Kilgour: Sit down. Mr. de Corneille: Rather, it would be better to say that it is desirable to include a reference to God, for which I hope all parties will vote. This is something which the Liberal party has stood for in the past, which it stands for at present and will continue to stand for in the future at all times. April 23, 1981 COMMONS DEBATES 9447 As we debate the resolution on the Constitution, a true perspective would show that we are participating in one of the greatest events in Canadian history. ‘ [ Translation] First, by patriating our Constitution with an amending formula and provisions for eventually holding a referendum, we will enhance our sense of identity as Canadians. Second, by including a charter of rights and freedoms, we will check whatever appears to our minds to be acts of injustice and inequity. Third, proclaiming our values is ideal in a document which will serve as an example for future generations and would constantly remind other nations of the kind of people that we are and of what we believe in. [English] First, I said that by patriating the Constitution we will deepen our sense of identity as Canadians. At a superficial glance, patriation may seem to be only symbolic, ceremonial, or psychological. It is all of these at least. But throughout this debate and the events which will follow, Canadians are becom- ing far more aware of their history and their identity than they have ever been, at least for a very long time. Some are surprised, if not amazed, at how recent has been our emer- gcnce into nationhood and how precariously our human rights have been protected in the past. Second, I said that by the entrenchment of the charter of rights and freedoms we are moving to eliminate what are recognized by most Canadians as injustices and inequalities, old and new. As parliamentary governments throughout the world have become more and more habituated to operate by government regulations, rules, orders in council and similar instruments, it becomes increasingly urgent and important to protect the individual through an entrenched charter with the fundamental right to appeal to the courts for redress against arbitrary government violations of personal rights and free- doms. Further, the charter will protect every Canadian individual and minority from the tyranny of the majority, a fact which is of vital importance in a nation so constituted as ours. One wonders what there is about the orientation of the official opposition in this House that makes its members so strongly resistant to granting such a charter now. Some say they are for a charter, that it is a great idea, but that we cannot have it now; perhaps two years from now, perhaps some time later, but not now. Others say they are opposed outright to the charter. Some of their arguments against it are most imaginative, if not downright ingenious. One such argument we have heard quite often from the opposition is that our Canadian charter will not protect anyone anyway. lf there is a will to circumvent the charter, they nrgue, it will be circumvented. Some of these opposition members illustrate this idea by pointing to the Soviet bill of rights which, they state, is a marvellous document on paper hut is continuously and flagrantly violated in practice. They are correct when they say that human rights in the Soviet Union are flagrantly violated over and over again. However, in the heat of their opposition against the Canadian charter, they The Constitution do not tell us the whole story. They fail to explain that the Soviet bill of rights is a “marvellous document” only if one totally ignores the fact that it provides the Soviet authorites with huge loopholes. They are so big they can talk about human rights with tongue in cheek and crossed fingers. Q (l6/30) For example, in the Soviet document there is written in on purpose a basic and fundamental escape hatch; it is the provision that these rights are given in accordance with the interests of the people and “in order to strengthen and develop the socialist system”. In other words, one has no freedom unless one supports the Soviet government. The Soviet bill of rights is not a marvellous document because it is not a sound document; nor does the Soviet Union support a just interpreta- tion of it. We should dismiss such opposition arguments against a Canadian charter as baseless. A second alleged reason given by some of the members of the opposition for their resistance to the charter of rights is even less convincing. This was alluded to recently by the Minister of Finance (Mr. MacEachen). The opposition main- tain that they cannot support it because it is the current, singular and peculiar obsession of our Prime Minister (Mr. Trudeau). Now that is an amazing, prejudiced reaction by which to decide the affairs of state, even if the observation were true, which it is not. First of all, the charter is no current whim of the Prime Minister. In I967 when he was minister of justice he published a book entitled “A Canadian Charter of Human Rights”. I need hardly remind members that that was some 14 years ago, hardly a recent whim. Second, the charter is not an original idea or unique to him. The entrenchment of a charter has been advocated by Liberal, New Democratic and Tory leaders well before our present Prime Minister. The assurance of basic human rights and freedoms for all Canadians was of paramount importance to the late Right Hon. John G. Diefenbaker, and to that fine parliamentarian, Tommy Douglas. If we must talk of obses- sion, then let us say that it has been the obsession of Canadi- ans since 1927, following the Imperial Conference when the matter was first raised. It was the obsession of the Right Hon. Louis St. Laurent. It was the obsession of the late Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson when he wrote in January 1968 these words: As Canada enters into its second century of confederation, Canadians could take no more meaningful step than to entrcncli firmly in our constitution those fundamental rights and liberties which we possess and cherish. A Canadian charter of human rights would reflect and protect the high degree of freedom enjoyed by Canadians and the unique bilingual character of the country. l recommend to all Canadians the acceptance of a Canadian charter of human rights. So it is not merely an obsession of our present Prime Minister. The charter has been a torch for the Liberal party and for many New Democratic and Tory leaders over the decades. Now it is borne proudly by the Liberal caucus, for with this torch of freedom, we hope to kindle the fires of justice and equality everywhere. 9448 COMMONS DEBATES April 23, 1981 The Constitution We rejoice, as pointed out by the Minister of Finance in his recent speech, that the overwhelming majority of Canadians support the entrenchment of a charter of rights and freedoms in the Constitution. We rejoiced on March 25 last when leaders of 18 minority communities came to Ottawa armed with petitions and resolutions from their organizations. They called for the immediate entrenchment of a charter of rights and freedoms on behalf of two and a half million Canadians who belong to minority groups. l am sure it will not lessen the stature of our Prime Minister that he is attacked for being obsessed with human rights. What seems to me really to underlie the major opposition to the entrenchment of the charter of rights and freedoms is a lack of urgency or sensitivity on the part of some members in recognizing the lack of protection of rights for so many people across this country, both now and in the past. The opposition fails to realize how dangerous it is to continue to rely on the comfortable majority to protect frustrated or disadvantaged minorities. The hon. members for Provencher (Mr. Epp) and Rosedale (Mr. Crombie) can lean back and philosophize from now until kingdom come about how all these rights are inalien- able-~that therefore, in theory, these rights already exist. But just try telling that to the aboriginal people of Canada, to women, to the handicapped, or to may of our unprotected minorities. Theirs is too much of a laissez-faire approach which assures us that all will work out somehow, somewhere, some time, but not just now. How can we ignore the fact so sagcly observed by Dr. Walter Tarnopolsky that so far as the provinces are concerned, as of now, in 1981, although all ten have anti-discrimination statutes, only three provinces have bills of rights which cover political civil liberties, that is, fundamental human rights, and only one guarantees legal civil liberties. Tarnopolsky therefore concludes: Considering that the fundamental principle of the parliamentary system of government which applies in Canada is that the legislatures are supreme within lheirjurisdiction, there is absolutely no constitutional limitations on sevcn of the provinces from restricting fundamental freedoms, and nine of them from restrict- ing legal civil liberties. If those who oppose the immediate entrenchment of the charter had their way, the result would be not only a prolonga- tion of certain injustices and a delay in the establishment of linguistic and mobility rights, the rights of the aboriginal people and the handicapped; there would be one more serious consequence that is often overlooked. This is my third point, that our Constitution and our charter will proclaim our values and ideals as a nation. By this charter, we declare to all Canadians and to all people everywhere that not only are we a democratic society, but also that, by enshrining the sanctity and freedom of the individual, we entrench very sweeping limitations on the power of the state and reject any and all forms of totalitarianism. The Canadian charter is a declaration ofjustice and compassion which is probably unequalled on this earth. It has been developed in its present form by first being drafted on the basis of the finest tradition of the Canadian heritage of the British common law and the French code, and then by being perfected by passing through the refiner’s fire of the testimony of Canadians who have fled from every form of oppression in every corner of the globe, and who have suggest- ed, on the basis of their personal experiences, ways to advance still further the entire cause of human dignity. We underesti- mate the importance of this constitutional charter as a teacher to this and future generations, Q (1650) Some reject the charter and would prefer to rely on public attitudes. They argue that you cannot legislate morality, that you cannot change bigotry by laws, that you have to wait for attitudinal change. That kind of mentality, which one hears often from the other side, is all too tragically reminiscent of the same point of view of the governors in the southern United States who stubbornly opposed federal civil rights legislation, They maintained that local popular acceptance was first required. They further claimed that federal civil rights legisla- tion interfered with local states’ rights. Dr. Martin Luther King, as Gordon Fairweather has said, put the relationship between law and morality in stark terms when he said: It may be true that law cannot make a man love me, but it can keep him from lynching me. Dr. King went further in pointing out that the law is also an important teacher of values. The law transmits from age to age. Why do hon, members of the opposition so underestimate the importance of the written law, the codified law, as a teacher and transmitter of values? Why do they shrink from wanting to put it down in black on white in the charter? The ten commandments are laws. It is true that they are not always obeyed. People still, unfortunately, kill, steal and bear false witness against their neighbours; but the ten commandments and other moral laws are values which were and are inculcated into the minds of people. Does law not teach and change values? ls not the bible itself a codified book of laws’! In some circles, in fact, it is known as the “volume of the sacred law”. When the Presbyterian moderator of the Church of Scotland presents the volume of the sacred law, the volume of the bible, to the monarch at a coronation, the moderator makes the presentation with these words: Here is wisdom. This is the royal law. These are the lively oracles of God. I say to my hon. friends that law changes attitudes, and so do many of the laws we pass here, as will the charter of rights and freedoms, to the benefit of the aboriginal people, the handicapped and all others whom this charter has been designed to protect. Moreover, I believe this charter to be so essential that it deserves not only passage in this House but special treatment thereafter as well. Presently as chairman of the northern pipelines committee l serve on a standing committee with a permanent frame of reference to monitor and watchdog the progress of the Alaska pipeline. Surely the rights and freedoms of Canadians are as important to Canadians as the pipeline. I April 23, I981 COMMONS DEBATES 9449 would advocate not only passage of the charter in this House, but also the establishment of an ongoing House of Commons standing committee as a watchdog to monitor and uphold the principles and values for which this charter stands. Finally, I plead with all members of this House, l plead with till Canadians, to remember the oppressed people who are suffering brutal violation of their human rights throughout the world. I have always been convinced that the struggle for human rights throughout the world is indivisible. That is why ten years ago, as head of a Canadian national human rights organization, I presented a petition to the federal government signed by thousands of Canadians and calling on our country, both nationally and provincially, to endorse Canada’s signa- ture to and ratification of, the international human rights covenants of the United Nations. We presented that petition on human rights day, i971, to the Right Hon. Prime Minister, who immediately assured us of his readiness to give federal ratification. It took five more years before all the provinces concurred, before Canada in 1976 was at last able to speak out on behalf of the oppressed in many foreign lands. For the sake of those oppressed as well as our own sake, we cannot afford to wait again. I plead that we remember that Canada has a great and central role to play in international human rights commissions En? iouptsil wondtgr if we realize t}h8t,SWlt6n Iylveyspeakdupl on eta o victims o oppression in t e ovtet nion an esc- where, we are often taunted with the accusation in internation- tii courts of justice and commissions: “Where is your human rights legislation to guarantee protection for all Canadians? What about the rights of your aboriginal peoples? Why is your Constitution totally silent on human rights?” Let us be able to reply to these taunts resolutely: “We have entrenched in our Constitution all these rights. Our hands are clean; now wash yours.” Mr. Edward Broadbent (Oshawa): Mr. Speaker, just a few weeks ago during this historic debate on the establishment of a truly Canadian Constitution I indicated why we were support~ ing the measure now before the House. I indicated then that tunong the reasons, first and foremost was the following. The ttclion the Parliament of Canada is now taking would lead to a truly Canadian Constitution, one that would be here in our own land. Contrary to what some people have been saying, not only in the House of Commons but from coast to coast, this would be a Constitution made for Canadians, by Canadians tight here in the House of Commons. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Broadhent: Secondly, the proposal before us contains a workable amending process, something this country has lacked throughout its history and which has led in fact to many of the tiivisions, both regional and within regions. We have lacked the process necessary to make needed constitutional change. I say in passing that while the formula for amending the (fonstitution in this document is not perfect-indeed, if you ltmk at the constitution of any federal state you will not find a The Constitution perfect amending formula—it still remains a fact, as pointed out by members of my party and by others, that if the premiers in the next couple of years come up with a better formula, there is a process in this resolution by which a preferable formula can be selected by the people of Canada. That seems to me to be a very reasonable proposal indeed. Thirdly, and very important to members of my party, this document we are debating contains a charter of human rights, something my party has been calling for throughout the land since the Regina manifesto. I am not going to dwell at length on the need for a charter of rights. I did that in my speech a few weeks ago, and it was again addressed very eloquently as a subject by two of my colleagues, among others, the hon. member for Burnaby (Mr. Robinson), who is our justice critic, and yesterday by the hon. member for Broadview-Greenwood (Mr. Rae). Q (1700) We need a charter of human rights in a federal state which is diverse regionally and culturally. I repeat that we do not need to elaborate on the arguments; we have heard them already in the House and they cannot be ignored. Our country on the whole has had a proud history, but our country has also had moments of which none of us should be proud such as when we discriminated against the Japanese, against our native people, against the Chinese, and against women. With the accomplishment of the aims which are included in this charter and the fundamental rights which will be guaranteed, I hope we will never do that again in the future history of this country. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Broadbentz Having said that, I want to note certain particular aspects of the charter which are of particular impor- tance to my caucus colleagues. First among these that I want to stress are the rights which will be established in all prov- inces for francophone Canadians. [Translation] As an anglophone it is very important to me at this moment in our history to see that the people who belong to a culture other than mine have the same rights, and it is very important in the province of Ontario, I want to emphasize this, that all francophones enjoy the same rights as anglophones have in the province of Quebec. [English] With this resolution it would not be true to say that we will have achieved that goal. As all members in this House know, we will not have achieved the same rights for francophones in the province of Ontario as anglophoncs have in the province of Quebec, and that is something about which we should all be concerned with respect to future action. In mentioning that I want, through this body, to address particular comments to the Premier of the province of Ontario. The Premier of the province of Ontario has moved in accepting minority linguistic rights in schools and has done so by sup- 9450 COMMONS DEBATES April 23, I981 The Constitution porting the measure which is before Parliament. These rights will be enjoyed by French-speaking Canadians in schools right across Canada. I say to the Premier of the province of Ontario that that is one important step, but before very long, if he has any sense of justice at all, he must do for all francophones in the province of Ontario what has long since been done for anglophones in the province of Quebec. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Broadbent: My colleagues are also pleased that in this charter we find protection for those of us coming from outside North America originally who are neither English-speaking nor French~speaking by ancestry; that is, the group we usually include in the term “the ethnic community”, which makes up more than one-third of our population. It is indeed fitting for a federal state like Canada to note particularly the contribution that group has made to the history of our country and to have a section entrenched in our Constitution with particular refer- once to them. I am also pleased at the inclusion of the handicapped, and I am pleased, as are my colleagues who have fought so hard in recent years in two major campaigns at the national level for women’s rights, that at long last with this charter, and espe- cially with the amendments which will be voted on later tonight, equality, at least in terms of the law and in terms of fundamental rights, will be provided for Canadian women. I say “at long last”; we still have a long way to go. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Broadbentz Finally, a particular group I want to men- tion is our native peoples. As is indeed true in the United States of America and in South America, we in this country have not been as generous to the original inhabitants of this country as have people outside this part of the planet to their original inhabitants. Let me put it more bluntly. We have all too often been cruel and indifferent and, indeed, at times murderous to the original inhabitants of this continent. At long last we will begin to redress a profound historical injustice by entrenching in the Constitution of Canada aboriginal and treaty rights. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Broadbent: In that connection I want to say that I am pleased that the government has decided to support an amend- ment tonight which will entrench those rights with the same degree of legal solidity, if that is a proper term, as all the other fundamental rights which will be entrenched in the Constitution. I must say in passing that I was disappointed to hear the comment of the Leader of the Opposition (Mr. Clark) earlier today in giving such grudging acceptance to this notion. I want to say that it was members of my party—other colleagues in my caucus-—and of the government party as well who worked very hard at the committee level and in private to obtain these rights, and there was no movement at all at that time in terms of determination by members of the official 0pp0SitiOn. I resent their condescending attitude toward the important step we will be taking in voting for the entrenchment of aboriginal rights later on tonight. I must also say that the Leader of the Opposition was somewhat disappointing when he said that he would support our amendment as it affects the equality of women too “because it was, after all, the wording which was selected by the Conservative party”. Mr. Benjamin: Hogwash. Mr. Broadbent: If the Leader of the Opposition wants to be completely honest, he knows very well that the Conservative party had wording in an amendment in the Senate which was not nearly as effective as this wording, and it was only after this wording in the proposed amendment became public that the Conservative party carefully extracted it from some news- paper and included it among their own amendments. It is one thing to get up and say they are going to support something, whether it is women’s rights, native rights or any other basic matter; but then to pass off in a rather cynical way that the idea was really their own is something I find just a little hypocritical and out of place in a debate as serious as this. Since l last spoke in this debate there have been two developments on which I want to comment. One was the premiers‘ conference. l say—~and I mean it when I say it~—that when the premiers of the eight provinces who opposed the position taken by the Government of Canada and by my caucus got together, I hoped they would come together in Ottawa and present us with an amending formula which was better than the one we had thought was workable. I thought it would be better for Canada if the premiers came up with a formula which we could incorporate as an amendment to this resolution. Because if they had done that, then indeed it would have been accurate to say that the new Constitution that we will have—and 1 am confident we will have it—was not simply the result of parliamentary action but the result of serious, constructive participation by a majority of the provinces. Q (l7l0) The premiers met, Mr. Speaker. Not only did they not come up with a better amending formula; they did not come up with anything that approached the notion of a charter of rights in any sense. Therefore, they failed on two important counts, since the essence of the resolution which is before us is to provide us with an independent Canadian constitution with an amending formula for the future, on the one hand, and, on the other hand, provide a charter of rights. The premiers failed to achieve an amending formula. They presented one which would create a patchwork or a checkerboard, whatever term one wishes to use, in which women would have rights in one province but not in another, in which native people would have rights in one part of Canada and not another. I want to go on record as saying that my party does not object to an amending formula which, in some cases, could include, by agreement, opting out of special, non-fundamental rights areas. But how can anyone who seriously believes in the April 23, 1981 COMMONS DEBATES 9451 notion of nationhood, who takes the concept of citizenship as a basic given right for a country, ever propose an amending formula, as the premiers did, which could result in Canadians having a different status of citizenship depending upon where they lived in our land‘? Our party can have nothing to do with such an idea. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Broadbent: In having failed to deliver when they came here, the premiers have legitimized, as nothing else could, what we are now in the process of doing in debating and voting on this measure. I meant it when I said that I regretted it, but that is one of the ironic and unintended consequences of that meeting. The vast majority of premiers made it clear that they do not believe in a charter of rights. The same premiers are heading governments in provinces where the vast majority of citizens in every province wants a charter of rights; the evi- dence is overwhelmingly clear on that. We represent Canada just as much as the premiers, if I may say so, since we too come from all parts of Canada. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Broadbent: If we want to take our responsibilities seriously and meet the needs and demands of the people of Canada who want a charter of rights, then I ask you, Mr. Speaker, what can we do? The premiers have come up with an amending formula which is unworkable in terms of a charter of rights, which they did not even discuss at their meeting. What they have done is exactly what some of us were saying last fall in explaining why Parliament had to act. What they have done is shown that only the Parliament of Canada can bring to the people of Canada the charter of rights which they need. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Broadbent: Before I conclude my comments on the resolution, I would again like to deal briefly with what I can only regard as the hypocritical stand of the Conservative party on the amendment standing in the government’s name. In the government’s amendment there are two key points. One recog- nizes the concept of God in the Constitution; the second aspect would put the western provinces of Canada on exactly the same basis as the Atlantic provinces when it comes to the amending process. Mr. Kilgour: Second class! Mr. Broadbent: On the one hand the Conservative party has talked about unity, about the Canadian way and how it is important that we should co-operate. On the other hand they have been going all across our land stirring up discontent, turning one region of Canada against the other. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Broadbent: I want to be honest about this, Mr. Speaker, specifically when it comes to the question of the prairie The Constitution provinces. The Progressive Conservative Party of Canada has been running ads in the newspapers of the prairie provinces telling the citizens in those provinces that they are citizens in a third rate province. Mr. Kilgour: Second rate. Mr. Broadbent: Some ads have said second rate and some have said third rate. Why are they doing this? They have said the prairie prov- inces have less powers than Prince Edward Island. Well, this very amendment will ensure to the prairie provinces that they have exactly the same powers as Prince Edward Island. Some hon. Members: I-Iear, hear! Mr. Broadbentz If the Tories were not the hypocrites that they are in this process, then they would be voting for this amendment tonight. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Broadbent: Not content with stirring up regional dis- content in the prairies, which they have been doing for the last several months, they are now deeply concerned because we have an amendment which puts the prairie provinces on an equal basis with Atlantic Canada. Some hon. Members: Oh, oh! Mr. Broadbent: The Tories are getting a little excited. I listened with care to the Leader of the Opposition. I would like the Tories to listen now to what to I have to say. Some hon. Members: Oh, oh! Mr. Deputy Speaker: Order, please. The hon. member for Oshawa (Mr. Broadbent) has the floor. Mr. Fulton: Quiet down, you half-baked dinosaurs! Mr. Broadbent: I apologize to all the dinosaurs for that comment! I was just saying that, not being content with stirring up regional conflicts on the prairies, which I frankly find despi- cable—they now have an amendment to remove that griev- ance-they have moved farther west. They are now saying that Alberta and British Columbia are being discriminated against. Mr. Kilgour: It is true! Mr. Broadbent: I predict that when this resolution is finally voted on, as it will be, and accepted by the people of Canada, Canadians will see the Tories for the hypocrites they have been. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Broadbent: As I suggested a minute ago, we are now near the end of this important process. I am confident about the Supreme Court’s final decision. I am confident that the 9452 COMMONS DEBATES April 23, l98l The Constitution divisiveness which has occurred during this debate with regard to our Constitution and our charter of rights, which is prob- ably the best in the world, will soon be replaced by unit. I am confident, having said that, that this Parliament will have acted with historical foresight which will benefit future gener- ations of Canadians. Before I conclude, I want to say that while we have tried to do what was done in the 1860s, when people representing different political parties put aside some of their partisan differences and put up with silly, mindless abuse of the sort we have heard in this debate-since some parties happen to want to co-operate to build a better Canada- Mr. Kilgour: Cross the floor, Ed. Mr. Broadbent: There is the intellectual level of the Con- servative party being demonstrated right now. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Broadbent: I say to the hon. member that if Sir John A. Macdonald had had the same attitude the hon. member has, then Canada would not exist today. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! O (I720) Mr. Broadbent: I have no regrets at all in saying that my party has worked very hard to improve a charter of rights and an amending formula to aid in the process of bringing home the Constitution from Great Britain to our land where it belongs. Equally I have no hesitancy in saying that surely some credit must be given to the Government of Canada. Also I do not hesitate to say that two parties were playing an important, historical role. I conclude by noting that while we have worked in tough- minded co-operation to build the Constitution of Canada, there are important matters to which we must turn our attention. I refer to matters such as housing, energy, jobs for Canadians, pensions and declining family incomes—in short, matters which affect the economic well-being of Canadiansw which this Parliament must now start to address in a serious way. I want Canadians to know that we have accomplished much together in developing the Constitution, but in the days and weeks ahead the Government of Canada can expect the New Democratic Party to be fighting as strongly as it ever has in the past to improve the economic well-being of our people from coast to coast. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! Mr. Gary F. McCauley (Parliamentary Secretary to Minis- ter of Consumer and Corporate Affairs and Postmaster Gen- eral): Mr. Speaker, it is an honour to speak following the statesman-like address of the hon. Leader of the New Democratic Party (Mr. Broadbent). I congratulate him for his vision of what this country is all about; it is one that we on this side o the House share. Canada in the 1980s is still a nation of young pioneers struggling to create a nation. Thankfully our country has always been blessed with statesmen who had vision, a vision of what Canada could be economically. I speak of those with the foresight to create railways to carry us to prosperity. Those trains carried to the north and to the west pioneers who bent their backs breaking the land, and the words “Dominion from sea to sea” rang true. We had statesmen with a vision of what our society should be—compassionate and egalitarian. Since all Canadians in every region contribute to the growth of our country, we should all benefit from that growth. Progressive legislators brought in pensions, family allowances and regional equalization payments. Curiously enough, they were all Liberals. Our society is not founded on the theme of survival of the fittest; it is founded on equality, compassion and recognition of past contributions to the nation. We have achieved much and we have grown much in economic and social terms, but in political terms we are still, as the poet, Earl Birney, put it: . . . a high school land dead-set in adolescence: loud treble laughs and sudden fists, bright cheeks, the gangling presence. This boy is wonderful at sports and physically quite healthy; he’s taken to church on Sunday still and keeps his prurience stealthy. He doesn’t like books, except about bears, collects new coins and model planes, and never refuses a dare. His uncle spoils him with candy, of course, yet shouts hirn down when he talks at table. You will note he‘s got some of his French mother’s looks, though he’s not so witty and no more stable. He’s really much more like his father and yet if you say so he’ll pull a great face. He wants to be different from everyone else and tlaydrenrns of winning the global race. Parents unmarried and living abroad, relatives keen to bag the estate, schizophrenia not excluded, will he learn to grow up before it’s too late? Will he learn to grow up before it is too late? That is the essential question, and now is the time to answer it. It is time for us to grow up and leave behind our political adolescence, the “gangling presence”. It is time to bring our Constitution home. No longer will our birth certificate lie in a parent’s purse; it will be in our own hip pockets. With it will be a charter of rights that testifies to our conceern for the well-being of all Canadians, not just the ones who can make it on their own. We will guarantee the rights of the disadvantaged, the minori- ties and people in the poorer regions of Canada. There is opposition to this initiative. How does one explain it‘? I-low does one explain the antics of the premiers, the gang of eight? How does one account for the position of the official April 23. I981 COMMONS DEBATES 9453 opposition? In answer to the first question concerning the premiers. let me simply quote Michael Valpy of The Vancouver Sun, who wrote: The only conclusion to come to is that (the premiers) are a somewhat mediocre bunch whose meeting last week will be remembered as one of the funny curiosities of Canadian histoi-y—like the Canadian Army’s I920 battle plan to attack America. What about the Tories? What about Her Majesty’s loyal opposition’? I want to be careful and charitable in answering these questions. First, we must look at the nature of our parliamentary system. There is an old British dictum that it is the duty of the opposition to oppose everything, support noth- ing, and defeat the government as often as possible. That is the system. If we on this side of the House were to stand in our places and say that two and two are four, hon. members opposite would find some reason to disagree. I firmly believe that that fact of parliamentary life is behind much of the opposition to this constitutional proposal. Much of the overblown rhetoric, the nitpicking objections and the Chicken Little cries that the sky will fall if we go forward are rooted in the Tories’ determination to oppose everything and support nothing. We had a prime example of a Chicken Little speech in the speech of the Right Hon. Leader of thc Opposition (Mr. Clark) a few moments ago. Even his Chicken Littlespecches are wearing thin like watered~down chicken~noodle soup. I noticed that only half his colleagues were present in the House to listen to his speech; that was not very many. Mr. Taylor: There are only I2 listening to you. Mr. McCauley: I hear the hon. member opposite. Let me tell him that I do not happen to be the leader of my party. Mr. Taylor: Thank goodness. Mr. McCauley: Also I was interested in the Right Hon. Leader of the Opposition clothing himself as fldei defensor, or defender of the faith. The hon. member for Eglinton-Lawrence (Mr. de Corneille) pointed out the hypocrisy of his statements about the inclusion of God in the Constitution, so I will not repeat him. But I feel a great deal of sympathy for the Leader of the Official Opposition. At his best he is a decent man and a good man, but when faced with the question of how to bolster his position as leader of a very fractious party, he chose to do so by nitpicking away at this constitutional initiative. It was not, I fear, because he believed in his heart of hearts that there was anything basically wrong with it, but because he had to appear strong at a time when those in his party were ready to pounce on any sign of weakness. Q (I730) So it is because of the nature of our parliamentary system and the peculiar circumstances of the Leader of the Official Opposition (Mr. Clark), that an attack was mounted, an iittack having really nothing to do with the merits of the case, in my opinion. How else, then, does one explain the Tory nmendinents? At face value, most of them make little sense at The Constitution all. Nothing in this charter affects the authority of Parliament to legislate in respect to abortion and capital punishment. Why just abortion and capital punishment? Why not the hand- icapped? Why not aboriginal peoples‘! Why not the kitchen sink? Why not’? Because this amendment is simply a crass appeal to special interest groups, an attempt to win brownie points on moral issues. On property rights, the Conservatives have been calling for the charter to include the right to property. At the same time, they are trying to present themselves as the protectors of the provinces. Yet it was at the request of the provinces that a guarantee of the right to property was left out of the charter. The provinces say inclusion of this right would put all laws on zoning and land neutralization in jeopardy. Prince Edward Island has argued movingly against guaran~ tees of property rights, Islanders have had the sad experience of watching their prime agricultural and recreational land bought up by non-Islanders. So they passed laws limiting non-resident ownership of property, laws they fear will be ruled unconstitutional if property rights are enshrined in the charter. So not only does the Conservative amendment on property rights go against the wishes of the provinces, but it is also meaningless. The Tories know Canadians will have the same guarantees of property rights under the new Constitution as under the BNA Act. Property ownership will be subject to the laws of the land, as always. On the amending formula, the Minister of Justice (Mr. Chrétien) eloquently demonstrated in this I-louse yesterday that the Conservative proposals just will not wash. I want to say a few words now about the charter of rights, in my opinion, the sine qua non of this initiative. hailed by many as the best charter of rights in the world. Without a charter of rights, the only protection for minorities is the good will of the majority, which is often lacking: just ask Canadians of Chinese descent, or Japanese, French Canadians, or English-speaking Canadians. Or take, for example, our native people. They are not power brokers. Governments could ignore their concerns with little political backlash in their non-native constituencies. But when we are at our best, deep in our hearts we know that our native peoples have been pushed aside for too long, that their plight must be our concern. So we have recognized their contributions to Canada and thcir rights in the Constitution. It may bc, Mr. Speaker, that you and I and the majority of people in our ridings will not need to call on the charter of rights to defend us from some arbitrary action; but maybe we will. Maybe it will protect us, at some point in time, from unreasonable search and seizure. Upon arrest, the police will have to inform us of our right to legal counsel, something they have no obligation to do now. We will have to be informed why we have been arrested, and be released if detention is deter» mined to be unlawful. Some people are concerned that ensuring such rights means weakening our laws, that the charter will aid offenders in eluding the long arm of the law. Those people forget that a 9454 COMMONS DEBATES April 23, l98l The Constitution fundamental principle of our justice system is that everyone is innocent until proven guilty. Sometimes such fundamental principles are violated. I cite an example from my own prov- ince of New Brunswick. Section 33 of the fish and wildlife act deals with night hunting laws. It is worded in such a way that the onus of proof is shifted from the accuser to the accused. That is a basic perversion of our system ofjustice! The prosecution has only to say that a certain person committed a crime, a certain offence at a certain place, at a certain time. No evidence is required to support the charge. A citizen is accused, and then the burden of proof is on him. If he cannot prove the charge false, the case is won by the Crown by default. A private citizen may lay the information and, upon successful conviction, collect half the fine for his trouble. Such informers may never have to appear in court or be known by any person outside the ministry of natural resources. In other words, they are secret witnesses. Surely such a law is in direct contravention of the proposed charter of rights, because the charter is designed to protect our rights and to ensure that everyone is assumed innocent until proven guilty. It will ensure that all of us have certain inalien- able rights which can only be taken away through a fair trial by just laws. One would expect western Canadians in particular to sup- port the charter for its guarantees of civil rights. The west, in large part, was settled by people from eastern European countries who fled the arbitrary and oppressive actions of totalitarian governments. If anyone knows the value of a charter of rights, westerners do. Opponents say that the charter of rights is unnecessary and our present system of common law is good enough. They figure a charter of rights is an instrument of a republican type of government, foreign to our parliamentary system. But other members of the Commonwealth have bills of rights: India, for example, and the United Kingdom itself which has the Magna Carta, a bill of rights, and an act of settlement. Britain also helped draft the European convention of human rights and is subject to adjudication by the European court of human rights. Other critics fear the courts will use the charter to declare legislation unconstitutional. They say it would be usurping Parliament‘s supremacy to have judges rather than legislatures deciding what is law and what is not. First of all, the courts can already declare legislation ultra vires, in conflict with our present Constitution, the BNA Act. Since Canada is a federal state, the Constitution is the immu- table law of the land and the courts must become the inter- preters of the Constitution. In the experience of other countries like the United States, courts rarely find legislation unconstitutional. That is because most legislators keep in mind their obligations under the charter of rights when drafting laws, the same way as now they keep in mind the limitations the BNA Act places on their powers. The charter reflects the opinions of a vast cross-section of Canadians, past and present, as opposed to common law which tends to reflect only the opinions of those in the law profession. The charter expresses the will of the people because it has had input from all segments of society, as has the entire constitutional resolution. It is arrant nonsense to claim, as does the Right Hon. Leader of the Opposition, that it is the work of one man, the Prime Minister (Mr. Trudeau). Let me refer to what has happened in this whole debate. The proposed resolution debated in the House of Commons from October 6 to October 23. Seventy-four members spoke, of whom 33 were Liberals, 32 were Progressive Conservatives, and nine New Democrats. In the Senate, 34 speakers spoke on the resolution from October I4 to November 3, of whom l7 were Liberals, l5 Progressive Conservatives, and two Independents. Then the proposed resolution was referred to the special joint committee composed of 25 members of whom l5 were MPs and 10 senators. There were l5 members from the Liberal party, eight members from the Progressive Conserva~ tive party, and two members of the New Democratic Party. In all, 170 senators and MPs served on the committee. From the House, I19 members served at one time or another. There were 50 Liberals, 43 PCs, and 26 New Democrats. From the Senate, 51 members participated, of whom 32 were from the Liberal party, and 19 from the Progressive Conservative party. The committee held I06 meetings on 56 sitting days, for a total of 267 sitting hours. Of the total number of hours, l76.5 hours were spent with witnesses, and 90.5 hours in clause-by- clause analysis. As of February 2, 1981, 914 individuals and 294 groups had sent letters, telegrams and briefs to the committee. Of those who expressed the wish to appear before the committee, three special witnesses, 93 groups or associations and five expert witnesses attended. Phase 3 of the debate commenced in the House on February l7. As of March 23, when the proceedings were interrupted by the hijacking of Parliament, 109 members had spoken, 35 Liberals, 58 PCs, and 16 NDPs. In the Senate to March 26, 36 speakers had been heard: 23 were Liberals, I2 PCs, and one independent. Q (I740) Let us not be taken in by the silly argument that this constitutional initiative is the work of one man. As I said at the beginning of my remarks, the time has come for Canadians to grow up, to move forward, to change. Change is part and parcel of our federal system. As Senator Maurice Lamontagne said: “One of the characteristics of federalism is that it obliges countries which adopt it to rethink their consti~ tutional situation constantly and redefine intergovernmental relations in the light of their experience and development.” Constitutional discussion will not end with this patriation package. It will continue as a constant process of rejuvenation. April 23, I981 COMMONS DEBATES 9455 We need to constantly encourage fresh, new ideas on how Canada should grow. Bob Dylan, that symbol of youth in the 19605, said it best: “He not busy being born, is busy dying.“ This constitutional resolution is the product of Canada’s historical development, the end result of years of discussion and developing ideas. We are changing, and will continue to change in the future. Society evolves. If it is alive, it evolves. We cannot write into the Constitution now all the social problems and possible solutions. We can only begin, recognizing that public attitudes will change, as they have in the past. For example, people in New Brunswick have said they cannot believe that a Conservative premier would back bilin- gualism in the province. But that has happened. The times are u-changing. Canadians are becoming more sensitive to the aspirations, the hopes and dreams of other Canadians. I am very disappointed that Ontario did not see fit to adopt institutional bilingualism but I can foresee it coming to Ontario some day, as it has officially come to New Brunswick. This constitutional resolution before us with the amend~ ments we will adopt this evening, is just and equitable. It is a blueprint for the future of this great land, founded on our past traditions and keeping in mind the kind of nation we want our children and grandchildren to inherit. Will we harness the momentum behind all these constitutional discussions and finally bring our nation to adulthood? Or will we simply let it wash by and drift off into the backwaters of history? Will we grow up? Or will we forever be gangling adolescents? At the very beginning of his incredible, courageous cross- Canada odyssey, Terry Fox said, “Anything is possible… Dreams are made if people only try.” If people would only try! Let us realize some dreams for Canada, in Canada. Let us make some dreams come true—the dreams of Terry Fox and other handicapped persons, and the dreams of hundreds of thousands of Canadians for a fully independent and sovereign country with the rights and free- doms of all, guaranteed for all. Some hon. Members: Hear, hear! * >8 *
Mr. Deputy Speaker: Order, please. I have the honour to
inform the I-louse that a message has been received from the
Senate informing this House that the Senate has passed Bill
(F42, an act to establish the Canada Post Corporation, to
repeal the Post Office Act and other related acts and to make
related amendments to other acts without amendments.
Mr. Knowles: Did they mail that to us‘?
The Constitution
The House resumed debate on the motion of Mr. Chrétien,
seconded by Mr. Roberts, for an Address to Her Majesty the
Queen respecting the Constitution of Canada.
And on the amendment of Mr. Epp, seconded by Mr. Baker
(Nepean-Carleton)’-That the motion be amended in Schedule
B of the proposed resolution by deleting Clause 46, and by
making all necessary changes to the schedule consequential
thereto; and on the notices of amendments of Messrs. Knowles,
Baker (Nepean-Carleton) and Pinard.
Mr. Stan Schellenberger (Wetaskiwin): Mr. Speaker, I
hope you do not become so wrapped up in my remarks that
you miss Black Rod pounding on the door!
I have one comment on the remarks of the hon. member
who just spoke about dreams. I-Iis dreams may well be our
nightmares. I have twice been prevented from speaking by
closure or near closure. When one feels so strongly about an
issue such as the Constitution, it is difficult to find that one
may not have a chance to speak and that there are others who
will not either because of the process by which this resolution
is being put through the House. We fought for a change in
that process and I am proud of the successes we have had. We
won the right for Canadians to see members participate in the
deliberations of the committee. We fought for time and were
successful in having time granted to enable a number of
members to speak before the committee, for provinces to deal
with amending formulas, and so forth. As well, we fought for
and won time for the Supreme Court to rule on the resolution.
If we had not fought for these things, this debate would not
be taking place now and a number of members who are
attempting to represent their constituents in this House, would
not have had a chance to speak. Some will still not have that
Even though we have opposed this process from the begin-
ning, we are still caught up in it because of the majority that
sits opposite. We were forced to deal with the resolution in
committee and we were forced to move certain amendments in
an attempt to improve the process.
As I see it, the process is the problem and I want to deal
with that in a number of ways. The first problem is the
unilateral action in bringing the Constitution home versus
doing it by consensus. 1 think a consensus could have been
reached and it would have made this a unifying process for
Canada instead of one that may well engender disunity. The
aboriginal peoples of this land who put a great deal of faith in
the amendments that we were going to move in the House and
in committee in order to protect their rights were forced to
deal with the question within a matter of days and have been
deceived by the process. They are now opposing that which has
been proposed in the NDP amendment.
Many eloquent speeches have been made by my colleagues
about the amending formula which is so offensive to the
regions of this country. The premiers have proposed a formula

DEBATES April 23, l98l
The Constitution
and a formula is proposed in our amendment which would be
much more fair to the regions. But now we have a number of
classes of provinces. Every time we have to face this amending
formula in the west and the maritimes, we will remember this
The Constitution of our nation should be amended in such a
way as to provide protection for those who are considered
weaker. We in the west are only considered weaker in the
sense that we have less population than other provinces. That
is the manner in which we have grown and in which we have
entered this federation which we call Canada. The amending
formula produces strong provinces, Ontario and Quebec, and it
gives them a veto. It produces provinces which have much less
protection, the regions, the prairies, B.C. and the maritime
provinces. Now we are faced with an amendment, an amend-
ment which requires three provinces in western Canada to
defeat an amendment and only two provinces to pass an
amendment. I see the time coming when an attempt will be
made by this government not so much to remove the resources
of western Canada as to search for funds. An attempt will be
made to take away the wealth of the area and to distribute it
by an amending formula as we find it necessary to meet
certain demands in this country. That is when we in western
Canada will remember the amending formula and the process
by which it was imposed upon us.
Q (I750)
We have been forced to move various amendments. The
speaker before me spoke about the many groups and organiza-
tions which have come to this House to attempt to tell
members of Parliament about the problems they see in this
resolution regarding property rights. I ask that hon. member
whether he has ever had his property expropriated. He should
talk to my neighbours and to me‘. I know the feeling. lt is not a
very nice feeling when you are in that position, I suggest this
government should tell all Canadians that their property
cannot be expropriated unless the due process of law is
observed and proper compensation is made. That is not the
case in many provinces of Canada. That is why that amend-
ment is so important.
Amendments to include the supremacy of God, equal rights
regarding men and women and the right to legislate as far as
capital punishment and abortion are concerned have been
moved. These are important amendments. But what do we
face? Again, we face the problem of process. We are now
forced to vote on an omnibus amendment.
Even the Prime Minister (Mr. Trudeau) asked how he could
deal with this resolution when he had to trade off offshore
rights versus human rights. He has put us in the same position
tonight when we vote on these amendments. We shall have to
trade off rights for native people, which I suggest are anaemic,
versus equal rights for men and women; or the amending
formula. which we find offensive to certain parts of this
country, versus the supremacy of God. We support the inclu-
sion of the supremacy of God. But who is going to be the
Solomon tonight? Who is going to do the dividing in half?
Perhaps some hon. members will remember the story in the
Bible of a baby being brought before Solomon. Two women
were claiming it. Solomon declared that the baby should be
cut in half. The baby‘s mother objected and asked for the baby
to be given to the other person. Although Solomon was able to
rule on that point, how do we rule tonight‘? How do I vote
tonight when I agree with half of the amendment and disagree
with the other half? It is imp0SSlbl€. We are again put in a
certain position by a process which is wrong from the start.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Schellenberger: I represent a riding in the province of
Alberta. There is great disapproval for this resolution and the
process by which we are imposing it. My constituents, my
premier, the other parties in the province of Alberta, many
provincial parties and governments in western Canada and the
other seven premiers who oppose this resolution are doing so
because they feel strongly about it. They are doing so in the
only place they can, through the courts. They are doing so also
through public opinion. If you believe the Gallup polls, the
majority oppose the process of unilateral action. The feeling is
so strong that it is not just a feeling of alienation any more, it
is a genuine discussion of western separation. We are faced
with the imposition of an amending formula which, in the
future, may attack us in such a manner that we will not be
able to accept it. When I speak on the issue, I do so as an
Albertan representing Albertans, but I also speak on the issue
as a Canadian representing Canadians. The two do not have to
be in opposition to one another.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Schellenberger: In this entire constitutional debate, the
greatest concern has been the process. Instead of the govern-
ment and the people sitting down together to draft a new
Constitution, a new document for this country with which
Parliament can deal, we are left with the option of amending a
package written by a few people in government and thrust
upon this nation.
There are other ways. My leader has mentioned that when
you seek unanimity, when you seek the right to deal with
something and you seek that out, you can find it. That was
proved by the late Right Hon. Mr. Diefenbaker.
I notice, Mr. Speaker, that you have also heard the tradi-
tional knock on the door.
A message was delivered by the Gentleman Usher of the
Black Rod as follows:

April 23, 1981 COMMONS
Mr, Speaker, the Honourable the Deputy Governor General desires the
immediate attendance of this honourable House in the chamber of the honour~
ublc the Senate.
Accordingly, Mr. Deputy Speaker with the House went up
to the Senate chamber.
And being returned:
Mr. Deputy Speaker: I have the honour to inform the House
that when the House went up to the Senate chamber, the
Deputy Governor General had been pleased to give, in Her
Majesty’s name, the Royal Assent to the following bills:
Bill C-42, an act to establish the Canada Post Corporation, to repeal the Post
Office Act and other related Acts and to make related amendments to other
ricis~-Chapter 54;
Bill C-64, an act to amend the Auditor General Act—Chapter 55;
Bill S-I7. an act to implement conventions between Canada and New Zcaland
rind Canada and Australia for the avoidance of double taxation with respect to
income rax—Chapier 56.
It being six o’clock, I do now leave the chair until eight
o’clock this evening.
At six o‘clock, the House took recess.
The House resumed at 8 p.m.
The House resumed debate on the motion of Mr. Chrétien,
seconded by Mr. Roberts, for an Address to Her Majesty the
Queen respecting the Constitution of Canada.
And on the amendment of Mr. Epp, seconded by Mr. Baker
(Nepean-Carleton)—That the motion be amended in Schedule
B of the proposed resolution by deleting clause 46, and by
making all necessary changes to the Schedule consequential
thereto; and on the notices of amendments of Messrs. Knowles,
Baker (Nepean-Carleton) and Pinard.
Mr. Stan Schellenberger (Wetaskiwin): Mr. Speaker,
before the dinner hour I was mentioning how we in my
constituency and in western Canada particularly disagreed
with the process. I suggested that if the Prime Minister wished
to get agreement, it was possible. I pointed out how in the time
of the Right Hon. John Diefenbaker there was agreement in
respect of financing of education, under the Right Hon. Mr.
Pearson there was agreement on medicare, and under the
Right Hon. Joe Clark we were able to come to an agreement
The Constitution
on energy. It is too bad that for this nation we were not able to
sign that agreement.
We constantly hear in the Prime Minister‘s argument about
54 years of failure. Let me refer to a little research I had
carried out in respect of the last 54 years, and whether those
54 years could be considered a failure in terms of amendment
to the Constitution.
In western Canada we certainly would not consider as a
failure the conference in 1927, the start of the 54 years of
which the Prime Minister speaks, because that was when we
were first given legitimate rights to our resources. We spent
some 62 days from 1927 to the present time at first ministers’
conferences attempting to deal with amendments to the Con-
stitution. From I927 to 1931 we spent ten days dealing with
the very important issue of returning resources to the provinces
of Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. That was a most
important issue to us and an issue about which we are still
concerned today.
In 1934 we spent three days altering the Criminal Code so
that the province of Quebec could conduct lotteries. That was
very important, I am sure, at the time. In 1941, two days were
spent dealing with the Raoul Sirois report. I could go on and
on. The next conference was in 1950 and dealt with old age
security, tax agreements and the amending formula. In 1964,
some 14 years later, we dealt with the lOOth anniversary of the
conference in Charlottetown and attempted to bring about a
repatriation formula and an amending formula for the BNA
Act, Again in 1968, when the present Prime Minister took
over and began his attempt to deal with a number of issues
including provincial control of social services, income support
payments, unemployment insurance, workmen’s compensation,
retirement income and on and on, all of which were put before
the first ministers of this nation, agreements were found when
agreement was sought.
Surely the underlying point to this whole process is that ten
to 14 years passed between each conference; premiers changed,
prime ministers changed, attitudes in this country changed as
society progressed, so how can one say that in the last 54 years
we have met with failure in amending the Constitution when
many amendments were sought and accepted?
In modern days we have failed under the Prime Minister,
and I suggest the reason is that instead of putting issues before
the premiers, an issue such as patriation alone, an amending
formula alone, offshore rights or resources, the Prime Minister
has always put the whole bag of tricks on the table. It is very
difficult for premiers not to do their utmost to protect their
interests. That is what they are elected to do. Again I must
say, we find the problem is in respect of the process.
Surely if the Prime Minister wished to find an agreement,
he could have put patriation on the table with an acceptable
amending formula. In that way, I suggest, agreement could
have been found. We could then have dealt at other confer-
ences with the other issues until we reached substantive agree-
ment, and then brought the resolution before the House.

DEBATES April 23, 1981
The Constitution
There is another way of approaching this, and other coun-
tries have used it. We even used this method at the time
Newfoundland came into confederation, I refer to the constitu-
ent convention or the constituent assembly. There are various
ways of doing this. Some countries elect their constituent
assemblies and some appoint them. Surely that is the way to
bring the Constitution into being in a unified manner.
I used Newfoundland as one example. Let me give some
others. Many of us do not realize that the United States has
used the constituent assembly. India, Norway, New Zealand
and Australia are all mentioned in this document put out so
professionally by our library. All of those countries used that
There is another process which is used in separate states of
the United States called the town hall meeting process. This
involves putting an issue before the people of the state. We
could do the same here in Canada. We could put the issue of
patriation or the charter of rights before the communities of
our country. They could discuss the issues and the areas with
which they want to deal and what they would like printed in
the Constitution. Each community or each town hall would
elect two or three people to attend a provincial town hall
conference where all these suggestions could be brought for-
ward and hashed out in committees until they came to an
agreement on what they wanted to present to a national
assembly. Each provincial assembly would elect two or three
people to attend that national assembly. In this way the people
of this nation would feel they had a part in amending our
Constitution or bringing it home. They would feel they had
some input and this would be a unifying process. Perhaps they
would even be able to accept some things that under this
process today may not be acceptable to some regions.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Schellenbergerz During those conventions minority
groups could present their opinions. At the same time the
provinces through their first ministers could be discussing the
issues. We could meld the two results and come up with an
acceptable process, an acceptable amending formula, and an
acceptable charter of rights for this country of Canada.
Some hon. Members: I-Iear, hear!
Mr. Schellenberger: I do not have much time left, but I
want to spend some of it talking about our aboriginal people.
‘ (ZOIO)
We had before us a process which, I believe, caught a group
of people unawares and not knowing exactly how they wanted
to entrench their important rights in this Constitution. Upon
taking a second look and upon seeing the amendment put
forward by the New Democratic Party, which was supposed to
solve all their problems, native groups feel they have been
deceived by the process,
I would like to take members of Parliament through a little
history of how aboriginal people have come today to the point
where they feel that their rights have to be entrenched in the
Constitution for protection. Up until the l960s they did not
even have the right to vote. When this Prime Minister was
elected, he said there were no such things as aboriginal rights,
and the minister at the time, the present Minister of Justice
(Mr. Chrétien), brought forward a white paper which said that
the aboriginal people, or native people of this land, should be
assimilated. Of course, they objected to that. The strength of
that objection came in a court case, the Nishga court case. The
judges ruled three for and three against, but the fact was that
there was a ruling recognizing the term “aboriginal claim”.
So the government had to accept that there was such a thing
as an aboriginal interest. What did the government do‘? It
decided to fund the Indians through political organizations in
order to deal with the term “aboriginal interest”.
Then there was the first modern land claim. When the
government of Quebec wanted to build a power dam, aborigia
nal interests had to be dealt with. The matter went to the
court, and the court ruled in favour of proceeding with the
power dam. The first modern proceedings on a land claim
extinguished aboriginal rights, and anyone who has sat in this
House in the last number of weeks realizes just how far that
land claim went because it has not been recognized by this
government. It is no wonder that the native people feel they
have to have their rights entrenched in the Constitution.
The process continued. Amendments had to be made in the
committee to deal with aboriginal interests. I believe hon.
members and native groups of this country sat down and made
an honest attempt to put into the Constitution words which
would protect aboriginal interests, but because of the time
limits and the legal language in which these amendments had
to be written into this Constitution in the couple of hours
available, I would like to tell hon. members exactly what is in
them and what are some of the concerns I have which I know
are shared by the native people of this land.
The first concern is with respect to why clause 25 is written
in the negative. Clause 27 dealing with multicultural heritage
is worded positively as follows:
This Charter shall be interpreted in a manner consistent with the preservation
and enhancement of the multicultural hcritage—
The wording with respect to aboriginal people is in the
negative. It‘s provision reads in part:
The guarantee in this Charter of Certain rights and freedoms shall not be
construed so as to abrogate or derogatc from any aboriginal, treaty-
Subclause (a) says that this includes the Royal Proclama-
tion. I want hon. members to know what the Royal Proclama-
tion says. The Royal Proclamation dates back to I763. It set
up the colonial governments of Quebec, East and West Florida
and the Islands of Grenada, St. Vincent and Tobago. However,
the important statement in the Royal Proclamation is the
wposscssion of such parts of our Dominion and territories as, not having been
ceded to or purchased by us, are reserved to them or any of thcrn as their
hunting gr0unds—
We all realize that we do not have to have a deed to land to
hunt on it. If I were an aboriginal person wanting ownership of
land, I would be very concerned about my rights as written in

April 23, l98l COMMONS
the Royal Proclamation, but what the Royal Proclamation
does is to show that the British Crown recognized that there
was such a thing as an aboriginal interest.
Then in subclause (b) there is reference to rights or free-
doms that may be acquired by aboriginal peoples of Canada
by way of land claims settlement. ljust stated that it is no
wonder that there are some doubts about this clause when we
look at the modern settlement of James Bay in which aborigi-
nal interests were supposedly extinguished. The Government of
Canada was to provide various catch-up provisions with
respect to housing, education, health care and so forth,
because, as we heard in committee and in this House, of the
plight of the native people there resulting from the government
not implementing the spirit of that agreement. It is no wonder
there is some doubt about that clause.
We then come to Part II. Clause 33(1) states:
The aboriginal and treaty rights of the aboriginal peoples of Canada are
hereby recognized and affirmed.
That is a positive statement in this Constitution, but I know
that status Indians are very concerned about clause 33(2),
which includes in the definition of an aboriginal person, all
Indian, Inuit and Metis peoples of Canada. In effect, we are
now using the term “native people”,
The concern which is being expresed as to do with status
Indians who need to catch up in society to become equal in
thcir way of life to most of us in the southern part of this
nation. The concern is whether the budget set aside to assist
those people will now have to be shared by another 700,000
The clause which causes the native people of this country
much concern is clause 35. I realize that the Prime Minister
could not put into the Constitution something which was not
defined, so he put in a clause which sets up the procedure to
define an aboriginal right. An aboriginal right will now be
defined by the first ministers of the provinces, the Prime
Minister and those people whom he, as Prime Minister, will
invite to participate in discussions.
Mr. Manly: You left it in your amendment.
Mr. Schellenberger: For the first time the definition will be
nrrived at with the participation of the provinces of this
country, so the New Democratic Party said it would assist by
moving an amendment to solve that problem. Members of the
New Democratic Party said that rather than dealing with one
province, we will now deal with the whole amending formula;
wt: will deal with all six provinces. The provinces have an
interest in defining an aboriginal claim in a very narrow way
bocnnst: it means land within their boundaries, it means
money. So rather than having one province deal with it, there
will now be a gang of provinces. One can mess things up, but I
know what a gang can do, and I can understand why the status
Indinns of this nation and the Native Council of Canada now
oppose the amendment which the NDP is proposing. They
mikcd to have a meeting with the leader. He refused to have a
meeting with them to discuss this very important point, so we
lmvo lost that support.
The Constitution
Mr. Manly: Mr. Speaker, would the hon. member permit a
The Acting Speaker (Mr. Ethier): The hon. member for
Wetaskiwin (Mr. Schellenberger) has been asked if he would
permit a question.
Mr. Schellenbergerz I have very limited time because of
closure supported by the NDP, and I would like to continue
my remarks. If there is some time left after myvremarks, I
would be happy to entertain a question.
Before my time runs out I want to come to a point which is
very important to western Canada. As we face this amending
formula and as we face the National Energy Program, many
people in western Canada are asking whether their members of
Parliament have the ability to represent them in this chamber
because we are consistently being outvoted by the majority in
the provinces of Ontario and Quebec. When our country was
set up, the regions of this nation were to be protected by the
Senate. The wise men of the nation were to protect our regions
and our provinces. We know the history of that, particularly
when one Prime Minister is in power for a long time. As a
result, when a budget which has disparate effects on our
regions is presented, or when a resolution such as the one we
are debating is presented, the regions again are manipulated
and outvoted. The Senate, which is supposed to protect them,
is not doing so.
I must say that there are certain senators—and our leader
has referred to them—who are attempting to protect the
regions and the provinces, but again the majority is against us.
Q (2020)
After we face this Constitution and push through the Na-
tional Energy Program, in my opinion we must have a change
in our institutions, particularly the Senate if we are to keep
this nation together. I believe the Senate should be elected. It
should have the power to stop certain of these bills which
affect our regions, so that we in western Canada will have
some protection against the majority populations in the centre,
when we are faced with this kind of situation in the maritimes
and western Canada.
Some hon. Members: I-Iear, hear!
Mr. Schellenberger: If we had started with this type of
process, I think between the change in our institutions such as
the Supreme Court, the CRTC, the Senate, and the town hall
constituents assembly, we would have a great deal more unity
in this nation.
The Acting Speaker (Mr. Ethier): I regret to interrupt the
hon. gentleman but the time allotted to him has expired.
Mr. Stanley I-Iudecki (Hamilton West): Thank you, Mr.
Speaker, for giving me the opportunity of making this first
address, my maiden speech, during this important debate.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!

DEBATES April 23, l98I
The Constitution
Mr. Hudecki: The sense of dignity I feel at this moment is
solely imparted by the people of Hamilton West whom I
represent. Hamilton West is a very special riding. It is a
community of people distinguished for breaking new ground
and setting high standards of achievement. On the industrial
scene, tradesmen and managers from this riding who worked
for Stelco and Dofasco, Canadian companies, have given other
industrial nations in the world a lesson at making steel at a
It was amidst our industrial heartland that the Association
of Canadian Clubs was born. This national society is dedicated
to fostering an interest in public affairs and cultivating an
attachment to Canadian institutions. These are not our only
claims to pre-eminence. In I957, our representative for Hamil-
ton West, the Hon. Ellen Fairclough, became Canada’s first
woman cabinet minister.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Hudeeki: A decade later the voters of Hamilton West
elected the first black person as a member of Parliament, the
Hon. Lincoln Alexander.
The riding of Hamilton West is distinguished not only for its
outstanding individuals but also for fuelling the growing sense
of western pride. In I935, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers chal-
lenged the Hamilton Tiger Cats for the Grey Cup. In allowing
its first victory that year in Hamilton, we easterners estab-
lished a trend which shows no sign of letting up. In the riding
of Hamilton West we have situated the Canadian Football
Hall of Fame which immortalizes football heroes from every
corner of the country.
As a Hamiltonian, however, I take more heart in other
achievements. In 1949, McMaster University established the
first isotope laboratory in Canada. A decade later, the Right
I-Ion. John Diefenbaker officiated at the start-up of McMas~
ter’s full-size research reactor, the first of its kind in the
British empire. In Hamilton West we have the Canadian
Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, providing infor-
mation and advisory services to the working people of Canada.
Having briefly cited some of our local milestones, it is now
important that I address myself to the constitutional debate.
These are momentous days of national renewal, days in which
we are redefining our common destiny as well as reaffirming
our sense of national purpose. The task of constitutional
renewal has been long and difficult. We hear that the process
is divisive, that actions have been unilateral, that governments
are self-interested and that people are misinformed.
In this atmosphere of apparent turmoil, it might be well that
we remind ourselves of certain fundamental realities. The first
is that although we are in the process of change, we are
changing within the well-established guidelines of tradition
and stability-~the parliamentary process itself. This institu-
tion, of which we are all a part, has endured the test by its very
design. It is a design for which we can be thankful. Within this
time honoured framework change can take place, but it takes
place slowly and with much discussion and compromise. Like a
large seagoing vessel, the ship of state will creak and give with
the changing weather and tides, but it must stay afloat.
Parliament, acting as the centre of wide-ranging and diverse
experiences of a vast nation, must also creak and give with the
tides, but it must also endure.
As politicians from all parts of the country, we are often
criticized for thinking only as far as the next election. But in
this constitutional debate, we have been asked to take part in a
process that has far-reaching and long-ranging consequences.
In this endeavour, the members of this House have not avoided
the responsibility of seeing that the needs of all are duly
represented. This, after all, is our duty.
But now the subject of our deliberations has reached the
point of decision. In this constitutional debate, we aspire to
articulate the beliefs and ideals of the Canadian people; but we
must not lose sight of the fact that we do so within the
dynamic system of parliamentary democracy with its built-in
checks and balances, framed by the judiciary and intergovern-
mental relationships and under the scrutiny of the people who,
after all, are the final arbiters of all our decisions.
We Canadians have come of age. We have served notice
that we no longer need a foreign power to act as a steward for
our Constitution. For that reason, the Constitution will be
patriated-about that there is no question. The constitutional
package, with its appended charter of rights and amending
formula, is essentially the draft resolution of a special joint
committee of Parliament and the Senate, articulating the
position and the aspirations of the Canadian people, after
interviewing 97 groups and reviewing 1,280 written submis-
sions. The proposed resolution has evolved through a process of
enlightened compromise. The spirit of the document is praise-
worthy. The style could be improved, but to do so we would
have to commission poets to help lawyers and academics draft
more ringing phrases to match its elevated intent.
Q (Z030)
At this stage, the government is criticized for acting unilat-
erally in bringing this proposed resolution to Parliament. The
act of unilateralism has been described as uncivilized, divisive
and undemocratic. This is a justifiable criticism, but it could
be explained and attributed to the process. The conventional
approach has been to seek the unanimous consent of all
provinces. Historically, this has been ineffective because it has
been practically impossible to reach unanimous agreement
with the provincial governments on any issue. Even in the past
week eight premiers could not convince Ontario and New
Brunswick to accept an amending formula which required the
agreement of seven provinces, representing 50 per cent of the
Canadian population, with opting out privileges by a two~thirds
majority of the legislature. To date the provincial input into
this process is limited by the tyranny of unanimity; in the
future this problem will be remedied.
For a period of two years, after patriation, the unanimous
consent formula will remain in place and a search will be made
for a less restrictive formula.
The federal government is proposing that future constitu-
tional amendments be made on the basis of the so-called

{itpril 23, 1981 COMMONS
Victoria formula which would allow change to the amend-
ments with the approval of Ontario, Quebec, two Atlantic
provinces and two western provinces without opting~out privi-
leges. If the permanent amending formula is finally reached,
then annual federal-provincial conferences will take place in
which the provinces, using the accepted formula, will finally
miikc their contribution in adjustments to the Constitution to
meet the particular needs of their provinces.
The goal of the present government is to have strong provin-
uiul legislatures to look after and supervise the needs of their
particular regions but to have strong national government to
lipcuk for the nation.
I personally will always accept the right of a provincial
government to exercise jurisdiction in regional matters, but I
clmnot agree to the country being run by a weak association of
premiers. To accept anything less in the way of a central
government is to betray an appalling lack of understanding of
the new world order.
The world is entering the post-industrial phase, character-
ized by the emergence of assertive super states, global cartels
unil powerful multinational corporations. If Canada is to play
its rightful role in the new economic scheme, it requires a
rttrong federal system. It is folly to believe that a loose associa-
lion of provinces can compete in this league. We must have a
itlrong, wholesome government to design a national economic
rtlrntegy and to meet the exigencies of the nation. We need a
unified country if we are to have a significant and respected
voice in world affairs.
There is some concern by the official opposition about the
reliance of a people’s referendum on constitutional change.
The proposed amending formula contains the surest device
which any democratic government can employ to resolve a
deadlock. The majority of Canadians were pleased with the
clear results of the most recent referendum. Once the Consti-
tution is patriated, there will be no one to turn to in the even of
llll unresolved dispute between governments, except the people
of Canada who elected both levels of government. The use of
rofercnda instituted by the federal govement or by the people
of Canada is an appropriate vehicle to break a logjam in
federal-provincial indecision. The referendum approach must
uiwuys be used cautiously and prudently. The rules of imple-
mentation must be diligently followed in a non-partisan
manner. Members opposite and dissenting premiers look at the
referenda proposal suspiciously, as if it were a precursor to the
imposition of a unitarian form of government. Such an infer-
ence is entirely without foundation.
One example which illustrates the historic division of powers
mid the critical role of a central government is the develop-
ment of our health care service in Canada. As a medical
doctor, the front line experience of practicing the art and
ltohince of surgery for some 30 years has given me a distinct
msnipective. I have seen the triumph of strong parliamentary
ticmooracy and federalism in the way the majority of Canadi-
an citizens, medical institutions and governments have
t3()rt)|l¢I’i\t(:(l over the decades to establish a publicly financed
lteultli cure system throughout the dominion.
The Constitution
In 1968, the national medical system was born with signifi-
cant input from the medical profession and hospital services
and provincial legislatures. The major co-ordinating effort or
the driving force, however, came from the Pearson government
which, through its initiative and funding, made the project
possible. It was a strong, caring national government motivat-
ed by the needs of the people, applying the principle of
equalization which made the project possible. An effective,
strong central federal presence was necessary. There was no
willingness on the part of the provinces to accept medicare, as
the Hon. Leader of the Opposition (Mr. Clark) said this
A recent health service review, headed by special commis-
sioner Justice Emmett Hall, indicated that our Canadian
health care system is, by world standards, one of the very best
in existence today. Besides maintaining the vitality of the
nation, it has the additional function of preserving the right of
all citizens to enjoy unimpeded mobility throughout the
dominion, a right which is often overlooked in the constitution
of other democratic states. Whenever a resident moves from
one point to another, he or she is assured of medical care in
Canada. The national interest was served by a strong federal
government. This system will be seriously at risk, if provinces
are given opting out privileges in the constitutional proposals
under the amending formula put forth by the eight premiers
and our Conservative colleagues. I might make the observation
that it is also at risk if physicians are not allowed to continue
opting out privileges. The evolution of our health care system
was not a historical accident; it was a culmination of a national
q (mo)
The Canadian Medical Association was established in
Quebec the same year as the British North America Act.
While the terms of the act gave the province jurisdiction over
health and education, doctors at that time crossed provincial
boundaries in order to advance nationwide standards for medi-
cal certification.
There is a historical note which I would like to add. Parlia-
ment in that era was blessed with a much higher ratio of
medical doctors to other professions and trades in the House.
A staunch Cumberland Conservative member, Sir Charles
Tupper, was the first president of the Canadian Medical
Association, In recalling the past, I trust that he will be
remembered more for that moment than for the fleeting
distinction of having served as a prime minister of Canada in a
Conservative government, which was in power for an even
shorter period than the recent Conservative regime.
In I920, again under the umbrella of the federal govern-
ment, the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons was
founded and charged with the mandate to oversee education of
medical specialities and to stimulate research in medicare on a
national basis.
This challenge has nurtured and supported advances in the
art and science of medicine. Let me list the names of a few
Canadian medical pioneers and their discoveries: Wilder Pen-

DEBATES April 23, 1981
The Constitution
field, an innovator in the field of brain surgery; Hans Selye
and his studies of stress; Gordon Murray, Bill Bigelow and Bill
Mustard, pathfinders in heart surgery; and Fred Banting and
Charles Best who continued the refinement of the application
of insulin in diabetes.
To date, the tradition of accomplishment continues into the
future as advances in the field of health and health care will be
made hand in hand with knowledgeable health care workers
and doctors and an informed, caring, effective, national gov-
ernment which is ever mindful of the needs of the public.
This brings me to a personal note. I readily accept the
recently proposed amendment by the Liberals, and I am
satisfied with the wording of the proposed preamble in the
Constitution which states: “Whereas Canada is founded upon
principles that recognize the supremacy of God and the rule of
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Hudecki: In the 1978 version of the constitutional
package proposed by this government, the preamble included
the following statement: “The people of Canada proudly claim
that we are and shall be with the help of God a free and
self-governing people”.
In the new version of our national anthem, “Oh Canada”,
we have added the sentence “God keep our land glorious and
free”. We Liberals have always acknowledged the existence of
God and have shown respect for the dignity and worth of the
human person.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Hudecki: We have a deep awareness of the spiritual
and moral values, and we identify with the important role of
family life in the fabric of our nation. It is right and just that
God‘s help be invoked in light of the ominous advance into our
society of inhuman technology.
Before concluding, I must add my voice of anguish and
sorrow to that of many members on both sides of the House on
the subject of the flagrant abuse of our abortion laws. There is
no question that the abuse is continuing and escalating so that
nearly 65,000 innocent lives each year are destroyed, for the
most part, for the sake of convenience. I do not accept the
legal dictum that the act of birth is a dividing line between
being a human and not being one. Life is a continuing process,
and a new individual’s existence begins at conception when it
acquires a distinctive genetic pattern, making it a unique
human being. It requires only time and nutrition to attain full
human development.
The constitutional debate is not the forum to probe, examine
or review existing abortion laws. This is a matter for Parlia-
ment, and should be and must be further debated in Parlia-
ment. I have sought and received assurance from the Minister
of Justice (Mr. Chrétien), as recorded in Hansard, that the
right to debate this fundamentally important social issue of
abortion will remain in Parliament and will not be locked in
the Constitution. Parliament must retain the unqualified right
to amend existing provisions of the Criminal Code of Canada
pertaining to abortion.
I close on a philosophical note. The debate of the constitu-
tional proposals is approaching the last lap. It has evoked
intense emotional responses from members of Parliament on
both sides of the House. It has strained the goodwill and
forbearance of many to a breaking point. Our legal fraternity
has been drained of interpretations and opinions related to
constitutional matters.
There is every expectation that the Constitution of Canada
with a Canadian charter of rights and freedoms is about to
emerge. It will define islands of discrimination, intolerance,
injustice, real and perceived, and prejudices and biases in our
society. This legal document cannot redress the wrongs of the
past. It cannot undo the trials and frustrations of our ances-
tors, but it can, however, chart a course for a better future
with better recognition of minority rights.
To have truly accomplished this lofty ideal, the Constitution
will require an adjustment of our attitudes in our society.
There must be a more receptive understanding of and empathy
for the problems of the handicapped, the unborn, our native
people, new Canadians, the poor, the aged and the under-
privileged; and we must be prepared to meet and to react to
the special needs of these human beings.
Therein will lie the success or failure of these magnificent
debates, of the impressive manifestation of our parliamentary
democracy in action, rather than in the eventual proclamation
of these ideals in law.
I turn my thoughts now to the many contributors to this
unbelievably complex constitutional package. These people
gave generously of their skills and talents to prepare this
document which will hopefully give us a more united and a
more cohesive nation. I can think of no more apt quotation to
describe their Herculean effort than the words of Hippocrates
in his assessment of the art of medicine in his time which are
as follows: “Life is short and the art long, the occasion
fleeting, experience fallacious and judgment difficult.” I
myself feel that they faced this task with the spirit and the
devotion of Louis Pasteur when he said, “Blessed is he who
carried with him a God, an ideal of beauty, and who obeys it,
for therein be the springs of great thought and great action;
they all reflect light from the infinite.”
Q (2050)
Mr. Alex Patterson (Fraser Valley East): Mr. Speaker, I
am very happy for the opportunity to participate in this
important debate this evening. If we cast our minds back over
the past few weeks, we will remember that debates were closed
off on a number of occasions which made it impossible for
some hon. members to participate. Once again, we have come
to the point where the debate is going to be shut off and a
number of hon. members will not be able to participate.
I want to discuss a great many issues tonight but because of
the shortage of time I will just have to make references to
them in the main. The order in which I deal with them does
not indicate any range of importance.

April 23, I981 COMMONS
I want to start by saying that there is no nation in the world
where citizens have more rights, than in Canada. Some of the
statements made by members on the other side of the House in
this debate have been truly remarkable. To hear some of them,
one would think that there are no civil or human rights in force
today. In fact, the implication is that possibly we are living in
u state similar to that of Uganda. A great many people feel
that the approach we are taking these days will, in some
respects, jeopardize many of the rights that Canadians already
First of all, tonight I should like to challenge the whole
concept ofjudicial supremacy in the area of human rights. The
government is telling Canadians that they do not have any
rights whatsoever at the present time, and then it lists some of
them, saying that it is going to guarantee those rights!
The problem with that approach is that it says that govern-
mcnts are the guarantors of rights. That is not so at all. The
people grant rights to governments. There is no one in any
government, let alone the present government, who is wise
enough, intelligent enough, or bright enough to list all the
rights that Canadians possess today.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Patterson: The charter that has been placed before us
certainly does not in any way meet the needs, the challenge of
Canadians, or do for them what its promoters claim it will do.
I think this brings into focus the main problem with charters
of rights. They mislead people. They misrepresent facts. The
Prime Minister (Mr. Trudeau) has travelled across the coun-
try with the Minister of Justice (Mr. Chrétien) and others,
telling Canadians that they do not have any rights and that
they are going to give them to us. They set themselves up as
being able to change the whole situation and bring to the
people of Canada a pride and an achievement and a declara-
tion of rights such as they never had before.
In order to clarify one point, I should like to say that no
matter what the charter of rights contains, it will not solve all
the problems to which reference has been made in this debate.
l refer again to countries that have charters of rights. I know
some hon. members who spoke today took exception to this
und I am sorry that I shall not have time to reply to them. As
one illustration, we all realize that Japanese Canadians were
treated in an unjust fashion during the years of World War II.
Some people maintain that if there had been a charter of
rights, it would not have happened. But, Mr. Speaker, the
United States had a charter of rights and essentially the same
thing happened there as in Canada. A charter of rights is
ubsolutely no guarantee that the rights of the people will be
iumiircd just because they are written down on paper.
Another thing that should be emphasized is the importance
nl’ the supremacy of Parliament. I am not convinced that we
would be doing the people of Canada a service by asking the
i;mirts of the nation to be legislators. I am not convinced that
llioy should be asked to take on a function that has been
pnrlorincd well by the representatives of the people in Cana-
iln‘s Parliament and the provincial legislatures, or that giving
The Constitution
that function to a group of persons in the Supreme Court,
however wise and well-versed in the law they may be, is a good
thing. Courts deal with laws. I believe that is the way things
should remain.
A well known person has stated that the best guarantee of
human rights is a vigilant legislature and the existence of a
citizen body that is conscious that rights do matter and is
willing, if need be, to fight for those rights. The person who
wrote that was Harold Laski, author of “Parliamentary Gov-
ernment in England“ in the year I938.
I have serious reservations about trying to protect human
rights by a charter such as that before us today. In the first
place, the charter does not adequately protect the Indians of
our nation. I think the Indian people were hoodwinked into the
idea that certain clauses in the Constitution would guarantee
the protection of their rights, When they had had an opportu-
nity to look it over, they came to the conclusion that this was
not so. I do not think many organizations of Indian people, if
any, support the government’s package, as far as their rights
are concerned. Mr. George Manuel, the president of the union
of B.C. Indian Chiefs, stated as follows:
The constitutional resolution is unacceptable to us. It does not offer any
prospect that lands and rights, which have already been taken from us, will be
restored. It gives us no role in any future amendment process in which our
residual rights may be at stake. The result is a ‘dead-end‘ Constitution in so far
as our rights are concerned.
As things stand now, we are faced with a resolution to
support that particular reference in the package, when, all the
time, the Indians are opposed to it. We also have a statement
to the effect that the National Indian Brotherhood, which
initially accepted this with open arms, turned against it and
said that they were not going to support it when they found out
what it was all about.
The second area of deficiency in this charter of rights is the
protection of the unborn. I was very happy to hear the hon.
member for Hamilton West (Mr. Hudecki), who preceded me
in this debate, refer to this.
I have in my possession a legal opinion on the effect this
charter will have on the abortion law. It contradicts what my
hon. friend said a few moments ago. In short, this opinion says
that the abortion law and the Criminal Code will be unconsti-
tutional. Abortion would be available on demand and, what is
more, if Parliament tried to enact either a new statute or an
amendment to an existing law permitting the unborn the right
to life and to assert such a right before birth, such a law would
be declared unconstitutional.
That is an impressive legal opinion expressed by the Toronto
law firm of Stephens, French & McI(eown. It is well thought
out and carefully reasoned. It claims that this charter will not
respect the life of the unborn; indeed, it will permit abortion on
demand. The law will then be beyond the reach of Parliament.
The only way to change it will be through a constitutional
amendment which will probably never take place.
This is a serious weakness in this proposition. I believe that
the unborn should have rights and should be protected by law
in this country.

DEBATES April 23, l98l
The Constilulion
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Patterson: There is another matter which is of great
concern, Mr. Speaker, and that is the potential harmful imbal-
ance between individual and collective rights. This has to
include religion and rights. In a brief sent by telegram to the
Prime Minister, the Roman Catholic bishops of British
Columbia and the Yukon said that while Section 2 of this
charter guarantees the religious rights of the individual, it says
nothing about the rights of the church.
Q (2l00)
If individuals are to have the opportunity of functioning and
participating in the activities of the church, then some respon-
sibilities are attached.
I shall just give one illustration in passing. For instance,
when a church-related school or college are looking for teach-
ers, it is necessary for the institution to advertise in Canada.
No one from abroad can be accepted if there is someone in
Canada who is qualified to fulfil that responsibility. This does
not take into account that many church organizations and
related organizations have a certain declared statement of
faith and belief. There is no protection and no recognition as
far as the law is concerned at the present time. The problem
can be expressed in this way. If there is a position open and the
institution wishes to engage a professor or someone from
another church-related organization, they must advertise in
Canada. No provision is made whatever for the particular
doctrinal positions of the organization or their statement of
I am very glad to say that as far as I am concerned, my
representations to the Minister of Employment and Immigra-
tion (Mr. Axworthy) and to his officials have been very
cordial. They have been very co-operative. They recognize that
some attention must be paid to this facet if the doctrinal
integrity of the church is to be maintained. I have had a good
response from the officials in this connection. However, situa-
tions change, ministers and officials change and there is no
guarantee this state of affairs will continue. This places church
organizations in a very difficult position.
I want to speak now about property rights. One of the most
astounding omissions from this charter is the omission of
property rights. It has been a basic premise of social philoso-
phy that all human beings have a fundamental right to prop-
erty. Some theorists have put property rights in the category of
“natural rights”, those rights that accrue to man by virtue of
his humanity. Indeed, the existence of a human being is
contingent on his ability to claim things as his own. In the
most primitive sense, this is food and shelter. I think that is
reasonable. If you ask a farmer whether he appreciates land
ownership, what do you think he would say? What about
asking a fisherman whether he believes in the ownership of
property? I am sure we will hear say yes, I want my boat. And
so it goes. Property covers a wide range of issues.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Patterson: Therefore, to limit this provision is narrow
thinking because it can cover anything a certain individual or a
certain administration will want to read into it.
Property covers a multitude of rights, set out in “Social
Principles and the Democratic State,” at page 156, written by
Benn and Peters. There is no way that I could possibly list all
the property rights that we should have guaranteed. lf certain
ones are guaranteed, it means others are not accepted or not
recognized. As a result, we can see the problems we are facing
in all these different areas. The point is that the exercise of
property rights is an integral part of the existence of all human
beings. I believe property rights should be incorporated and
not traded off for support from some other individuals and
groups which have perhaps a rather twisted idea of what
property rights involve and what they actually mean,
Another reason given by the Liberals for not including
property rights is that some of the provinces were against it.
Mr. McCauIey: All of them.
Mr. Patterson: This is nothing short of being hypocritical.
Eight of the provinces are against this whole measure and yet
the Prime Minister is proceeding with it. The measure is
totally abhorrent to the concept of federalism. Yet the Prime
Minister uses the excuse that he will not include property
rights because a couple of the provinces are against the
measure. I think this is inconsistent and dishonest. Property
rights should be included in the resolution. As far as I am
concerned, the whole thing is a mess. We are, however, trying
to do something to improve it because it may eventually
become the law of the country. We are trying to make the best
ofa very bad and sorry mess.
The latest representation I had concerning this issue came in
the form of a telegram from the mayor of one of the districts
in my constituency. I will not take the time to read it into the
record. He was representing a great many who believe that
property rights should be included in this resolution.
Reference has been made to the supremacy of God. I am
very happy to see that the Liberals have consented, yielded and
decided to include a reference to the supremacy of God. They
have done it in a very casual way, sort of just tilting their hat
to God and saying, “we are just mentioning your name”. This
is not worthy of the situation. It is far less than what is
included in the Bill of Rights, now the law of Canada,
proposed by the late Prime Minister of Canada, the Right
Hon. John Diefenbaker. It reads, in part:
The Parliament of Canada. affirming that the Canadian nation is founded
upon principles that acknowledge the supremacy of God, the dignity and worth
of the human person and the position of the family in a society of free men and
free institutions;
affirming also that men and institutions remain Free only when freedom is
founded upon respect for moral and spiritual values and the rule of law;
I want to deal briefly now with the matter of federalism.
The Liberals, especially the Prime Minister and the Minister
of Justice are fond of saying that this Parliament is the place
that speaks for all of Canada.
An hon. Member: Right on.

£\pril 23, l98l COMMONS
Mr. Patterson: Someone said “Right on.” l believe that it is,
in a certain way which I will explain in a moment. There is
another factor ignored by the Liberals, conveniently so because
ll would undermine the position of the Liberal party. That
factor is that the provinces also speak for all Canadians.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
An hon. Member: Nonsense.
Mr. Patterson: Canada is a federal state. It is made up of
ten provinces of equal constitutional power and status. As
Dawson states in “The Government of Canada”, at page 82:
The powers of the provinces are as full and as complete as those of the
tlominion within the areas allotted by the BNA Act and both dominion and
provincial legislatures may delegate their authority to other bodies of their own
creation but not to each other.
The problem with the proposal before us is that it takes
from the provinces and gives to a federally appointed court
ccrtain matters which are within the exclusive jurisdiction of
the provinces. What is worse, it is being done without the
consent of the provinces.
Q (2llO)
We talk about property rights, educational rights and all
these other things. At the present time they are under the
jurisdiction of the provincial governments. Therefore l say that
all the provincial governments speak on behalf of all Canadi-
uns within their jurisdictional rights and the federal govern-
ment speaks on federal rights. I sec an hon. member shaking
his head. That is the problem with the Liberals; they are trying
to centre everything in Ottawa.
l remember when the Prime Minister was minister of jusw
lice. He made the statement that he looked upon his role as
minister of justice as charting the course of society for the
future. l believe that we have to pay attention to that fact. It is
t\ position that is denied and rejected by this whole package. lt
is breaking down the system of government we have in Canada
where federal and provincial representatives deal with their
own jurisdictional responsibilities.
l want to go on to the formula proposed and presented for
our consideration in the matter of amending the Constitution.
l believe, of course, we should not be dealing with this here at
this time. We should be dealing with the patriation of the
Constitution with an amending formula. However, as far as
the rest is concerned. it should await the bringing back to
Canada of our Constitution. That is the proposal we have
made. It is the only reasonable and sensible one. The reason it
ls not being done is that the Prime Minister knows he would
have great difficulty in getting some of his pet propositions
through his Canadian Parliament.
The Prime Minister wishes to cnshrine forever the inequality
of provinces. We in western Canada are prohibited forever
froin sharing as equal partners in our federation. This is totally
unacceptable to those in British Columbia and, as my friend
from Wetaskiwin pointed out, in the province of Alberta as
well. The proposed amending formula will discriminate pro-
The Constitution
foundly against British Columbia because we find in the
provinces of Alberta and British Columbia—British Columbia
has 40 per cent of the population—their combined population
is fully 70 per cent of the western population.
What this amending formula would do is to permit two
western provinces containing 30 per cent of the population to
bring about constitutional change that would be contrary to
the interests of the other 70 per cent. This is unfair, unreason-
able and discriminatory as far as British Columbia is con-
cerned. The population projections for the year 2001 show that
British Columbia will have 45 per cent of the population of the
provinces of Western Canada. We find here the possibility of
77 per cent of the western population being dominated by 23
per cent of the population.
Further to this particular issue, we find the federal proposal
is put forth in the form of a proposal to transfer the ownership
of natural gas to the federal government. For approval,
Manitoba and Saskatchewan, two provinces, would need to
have only 16 per cent of the population in order to approve
that proposition. Rejection would require three provinces. This
is all up against the other proposition that the provinces of
Ontario and Quebec have a veto. Each has a veto over the
whole thing.
That shows the position in which British Columbia can be
placed if a proposal is advanced by the federal government
regarding the transfer of natural gas, for example. British
Columbia will not accept that. If you think that alienation is
growing in the west, you might as well understand why.
Alienation in the west, if this goes through, will see a change
into something far more dangerous than just a resentment or
an alienation and a feeling that British Columbia is not wanted
here, that all that counts is central Canada. That is not
The Prime Minister has the view that whatever he does,
even if it means the destruction of our country, is justified if he
can obtain his own peculiar view of Canada. He stated on one
occasion, “l came to Ottawa to save Quebec, someone else will
have to save the west”. Perhaps it will take God himself to do
Look at this Constitution. It shows what contempt the Prime
Minister has for western Canada. No wonder he is not getting
any members from there,
We feel that through negotiations in the spirit of fair play,
we eould solve these historic problems in a way that would
permit British Columbia to be a full and equal partner in
confederation. However, I warn the Prime Minister and the
Minister of Justice that if they proceed on this dangerous
course, British Columbians will not tolerate it. We do not want
to be a region of second-class citizens behind the perpetual
veto of Ontario and Quebec. We do not want to become
third-class citizens behind Manitoba and Saskatchewan.
British Columbia did not come into confederation to become
subservient to the rest of Canada in any way. We have to
remember that British Columbia did not come into confedera~
tion when it was first established; it came in later. lt came in

DEBATES April 23, I981
The Constitution
with an understanding that certain guidelines would be main-
tained and certain situations would continue. If the govern-
ment is going to tear those things away, destroy them and say
we arc not going to get them, that it will not be held account~
able and responsible for what was said in the terms of union,
British Columbia will feel very angry about it. No one in their
right senses could question why.
I appreciate the fact that I only have another one or two
moments. I just want to emphasize once again the unfairness
of the whole situation. This package which we are faced with
today is a hopeless package, It is a miserable mess. Members
opposite ask why then are we trying to improve it. As I said
before, it is unlikely that it will ever pass, but if it happens to
pass, we want it to be improved so that it will be less
despicable and dishonourable than it is at the present time.
That is why we are moving amendments. We trust the govern-
ment will accept the amendments moved by this party and do
something to at least solve the problem, heal the breach and
make western Canada feel that somehow they are receiving
co-operation, that they will at least be listened to and, hopeful-
ly, there will be some redress to the problems and injustices
they have been facing over the last many years.
Mr. Robert Bockstael (Parliamentary Secretary to Minis-
ter of Transport): Mr. Speaker, it is a great pleasure for me to
be given this opportunity to take part in this historic debate on
these important amendments. The constitutional question as it
has evolved since last June has taught Canadians a great deal
about their country. In the last year Canadians have come to
know the difficulties of being governed in a country as geo-
graphically, culturally, politically and economically diverse as
ours. The experience Canadians have shared this past year has
proven that consensus and compromise is difficult to achieve
within our national setting.
However, we have succeeded in reaching consensus and
approval on many fronts. Opinion polls published over the last
few months, and especially yesterday, have revealed that
Canadians approve of what we are doing.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Bockstael: The premiers of Ontario and New Bruns~
wick agree with us as did a majority of the groups and
individuals who appeared before the special joint committee.
The federal New Democratic Party has supported our resolu-
tion. The provincial courts in Manitoba and Quebec have
rendered a decision to the effect that what we were doing was
in fact constitutionally binding.
Some hon. Members: I-Iear, hear!
Mr. Bockstael: Eight premiers have disagreed with our
actions. The Premier of Manitoba has steadfastly opposed the
entrenchment of a charter of rights. The Premier of Quebec
has said he would not agree with the entrenchment of minority
rights. In spite of Premier Lévesque’s and Premier Lyon’s
partnership stand, latest reports indicate that some premiers
now see the wisdom of accepting the charter of rights.
It is rather ironic that at the time of the referendum in
Quebec last May, several provincial premiers openly opposed
Premier Levesque in his attempt to break up this country.
These same premiers have today aligned themselves with the
Premier of Quebec in opposing the entrenchment of a charter
of rights and freedoms for Canadians, a charter which is
fundamental to national unity.
Premier Lyon of Manitoba has, over the last few months,
been the chief spokesman for all the dissenting premiers who
have advocated an opting out approach to confederation,
which to me is no different than Premier Lévesque’s unswerv-
ing drive toward sovereignty-association.
A poll conducted by the Canada West Foundation revealed
that Manitobans by a wide majority are in favour of a bill of
rights. In fact, 73 per cent of those surveyed indicated they
were in support of this federal initiative. I am a Manitoban
and I want a charter of rights and freedoms. The hon. member
for Provenchcr (Mr. Epp) is also a Manitoban and he as well
is on record as favouring a charter of rights and freedoms.
Premier Sterling Lyon of Manitoba has said time and time
again that he would never accept a charter of rights and
freedoms. It is evident that Premier Lyon does not speak for
me, he does not speak for the member for Provenchcr, and he
does not speak for the interests of the majority of Manitobans
who want a charter of rights and freedoms entrenched in the
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Bockstael: ln 1949, the noted constitutional expert,
Frank R. Scott, wrote:
There is no freedom save under a system of laws safeguarded by a Constitu-
tion, and llic prime function of governments under a democracy, while keeping
themselves within their constitutional framework, is to protect and advance the
fundamental freedoms and human rights of every individual by all legislative
measures that seem appropriate.
Professor Scott also had the following to say about the
federal government’s responsibility in assuring these rights and
freedoms for Canadian citizens:
Under our system of government the responsibility for national decisions on
matters of policy rests on Parliament and on the cabinet which is answerable to
Parliament. lf a program in defence of fundamental freedoms is to be undertak-
en then Parlianicnt must make the decision.
The proposed Canada Act will provide all Canadians once
and for all their fundamental freedoms, their democratic
rights, mobility rights and equal rights for the handicapped,
among others. The amendments being proposed by the New
Democratic Party will assure equal rights for both men and
women and will give to our native population the assurance
that their aboriginal rights will only be amended under the
prescribed rules of the Constitution.
As a member of the special joint committee on the Constitu~
tion I can give a first-hand account of the events which took
place from November to February 13. I would like to relate
that on January 30 the Minister of Justice (Mr. Chrétien)

April 23, test COMMONS
unnounced that he was to incorporate aboriginal rights in the
constitutional resolution. Everyone was going around patting
himself on the back claiming the amendment proposed was his
idea, trying to take credit for it. I would remind you, Sir, that
lt was the Liberal Party which introduced that amendment.
At the time the hon. member for Nunatsiaq (Mr. Ittinuar)
ttttld he had to thank the Prime Minister of Canada for
ngrecing to include that in the Constitution. I must acknowl-
edge the native wisdom of our Indian friend, the hon. member
for Nunatsiaq, who so rightfully asserted, while everyone was
proposing we should celebrate, that he would not celebrate
until the Constitution was officially brought back here to
Canada. His attitude was vindicated the very next morning by
the events that followed.
The chief spokesman for the Official Opposition explained
that now that the committee has approved the first three
chapters of the resolution, now that we have all agreed that
Canada has to have its own Constitution, that the Constitution
should be patriatcd, it goes without saying that the Constitu-
tion must have an amending formula because it cannot be
brought back without such an amending formula otherwise we
will have to go back to Britain for amendment. He said they
ngreed with the charter of rights; he had just finished agreeing
on aboriginal rights, but then he said it was time to split the
resolution, time to call a halt to the whole process and refer the
mnttcr back to the premiers of the provinces for their consider-
tillon. This was just another stalling tactic of the opposition, a
technique to invoke opting out, an opportunity to resort to
itome kind of a veto which would rescind everything we have
alone and postpone indefinitely patriation of the Constitution
tttt(i a charter of rights for which the people of Canada are
Let me review the amendments introduced by the hon.
Minister of Justice. You must be well aware that it was a
liberal amendment which placed a reference to God in the
I960 Dicfenbaker bill of rights.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
, (mo)
Mr. Bockstael: When Canada adopted its national anthem
hltll July, we ensured that the official text included the line
“(lod keep our land glorious and free”.
Home hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Baker (Nepean-Carleton): Parliament did that.
Mr. Bockstael: In our earliest negotiations with the prov-
liiocs we proposed a preamble which recognized the authority
of (loll, but regrettably some premiers would not accept such a
ync:itnl>lc to our Constitution. For my part, let me confirm how
ttltltttidtl I am that the resolution in its final form on which we
nit: nbout to vote acknowledges the supremacy of God and the
title of law.
At the special joint committee hearings, we were delighted
to lice adopted the so-called Henderson amendment for the
The Constitution
Atlantic provinces. It stipulated that the approval of two
Atlantic provinces, regardless of their size or the number of
their citizens, would be sufficient to authorize amendments to
the Constitution. To even things up with the Atlantic prov~
inces, a second Liberal amendment will do the same thing for
the western provinces. With this new amendment any two
western provinces, regardless of their population, will have the
power to approve amendments to the Constitution.
Last August in Dauphin, Manitoba, Premier Lyon said that
any amending formula should protect all provinces not having
as large a population as Ontario, Quebec or British Columbia.
I am sure tonight this amendment will please Manitobans and
will be welcome news to all western Canadians, for what it
means in effect is that there are no more second-class prov-
inces under the Constitution of Canada.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Some hon. Members: Oh, oh!
Mr. Munro (Esquimalt—Saanich): Can‘t you count?
Mr. Bockstael: The third set of amendments we are to
consider is the catch-all omnibus amendment proposed by the
Progressive Conservatives. While it may appear to them to
have merit, we have to note that it only establishes a situation
in which “you can‘t have one without the other”.
Personally, I was disappointed that the right to life of the
unborn was not entrenched in the Constitution, but I must
point out that the proposed opposition clause which states
“Nothing in this charter affects the authority of Parliament to
legislate in respect of abortion and capital punishment“ is
absolutely superfluous, for it changes absolutely nothing.
We have been assured by the Minister of Justice that
through the Constitution the government retains implicitly the
right to formulate laws under the Criminal Code to regulate
abortions and such related legal matters.
Turning to more positive aspects of the charter, our Canadi-
an charter will seek to preserve and enhance the multicultural
heritage of Canadians.
Mr. Fleming: Hear, hear!
Mr. Bockstaelz I am ever grateful and I thank God for the
privilege of having been born in Canada and of enjoying
equality with all my fellow Canadians. In addition, I enjoy an
ethnic background which broadens my horizons. I truthfully
feel I am as anglophone as the majority of hon. members
opposite, I am as francophone as every member on this side of
the House, but first and foremost I am a Canadian.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Boekstael: I respect and uphold the bilingual and
bicultural reality of this country. I am a fully integrated

DEBATES April 23, 1981
The Constitution
Mr. Speaker, my colleagues appreciate the fact that I am
equally fluent in French and English, for I feel wholly
immersed in both cultures.
From the early days of confederation the province of
Quebec has acknowledged the right to English education for
its minorities, Protestant as well as Catholic.
Manitoba was called to order by the Supreme Court and
asked to honour the letter and the spirit of the Manitoba Act
of 1870 and, of course, it has to abide by that act.
The Charter of Rights and Freedoms which we propose to
enshrine in the Constitution will give the French and English
minorities, wherever they may be, the right to education in the
institutions of the linguistic minority, financed with public
funds, when the number of children warrants.
I recall once again that the premier of Manitoba has always
spoken against enshrining the educational rights of the official
minorities. What we are doing now is to make sure that the
linguistic minorities will have access to education in their
mother tongue, whether they are Francophones outside
Quebec or Anglophones inside Quebec.
Mr. Speaker, I want to dispel the false notion that our
charter is not made in Canada. Opposition members have kept
repeating that it is not a constitution made in Canada. I would
suggest to those hon. members that a great many years have
prepared us for that constitution. Ever since Quebec’s referen—
dum last spring we have joined the provinces in our quest for a
Canadian constitution and, since last October, all the members
on both sidcs of this House and the members of the Senate
have been pondering over the Canadian constitution made here
in Canada.
During the first phase of our debate, 74 members of Parlia-
ment and 34 senators were given the chance to speak out on
the resolution. In phase two of the debate we opened the floor
to the Canadian public. The committee held 106 meetings in
the course of 56 days for a total of 267 sitting hours. We
listened to 95 groups and five expert witnesses who came
before the committee and we received letters from 914
individuals and 294 groups. Many of the recommendations
these groups and individuals made were extremely helpful in
our efforts to bring further amendments to the resolution on a
Constitution made in Canada.
In this third phase of the debate, well over 100 members and
senators have spoken on the resolution. It is evident, therefore,
that we are not proceeding unilaterally to patriate the Consti~
tution. We have given to all Canadians the opportunity to take
part in this process.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
An hon. Member: Horsefeathers.
Mr. Bockstaelz I remind this House that from the beginning
the Official Opposition has attempted to stall the process. The
Official Opposition said it would do anything to slow down the
process. Then members of the Official Opposition insisted that
we needed public participation. We had to have television, so
we gave them television. We had to listen to the public. We
had to allow representations to be made. We had to hold
public hearings. We had to have consultations so that there
would be input by the citizens of Canada. We did this. It is
really the asides one hears at such meetings which count.
Members of the Official Opposition said, “We would keep you
here until next Christmas if we could”. The point is that they
were not interested in giving Canada its Constitution. They
preferred to retard and to withhold from the Canadian people
a Constitution and a charter of rights.
Q (Z140)
I would like to contrast this with the premiers of the
provinces. Who do they speak for’? I gave the example of
Premier Lyon a few moments ago. Who have the premiers
consulted with? Talk about unilateral action! Look at the
dissenting premiers who do not approach anyone, who do not
consult with any of their electorate but who come forward and
say that they are the spokesmen for the people of their
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Bockstael: Time after time we heard the opposition say
“Why do you not go back to those premiers one more time?”
For what purpose? I can recall the comments, reported in the
media, of the hon. member for Provenchcr (Mr. Epp) and the
hon. member for Rosedale (Mr. Crombie), who were attending
the leadership convention at the Chateau Laurier in Ottawa
and who felt sure that Premier Lyon would be amenable to a
charter of rights. A few days later in Winnipeg I heard
Premier Lyon say “I speak for myself. The hon. members of
the federal Conservative party do not speak for me and I will
not approve a charter of rights.”
How can they ask us to go back to the premiers who do not
want such a thing, who want to withhold those rights from the
Canadian people’!
Mr. Taylor: Do you want unity in the country?
Some hon. Members: Oh, oh!
Mr. Bockstael: Mr. Speaker, once and for all we should let
the Canadian people know that it is a myth that this unilateral
action is not unilateral. It is the participatory action of the
elected people of this country who represent all of Canada.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Bockstael: That includes the territories, not the private
domain of each of the premiers who want to trade off rights
for their privileges and resources.

mgril 23, 1981 COMMONS DEBATES 9469
Mr. Taylor: How many do you have in Saskatchewan,
Alberta and British Columbia?
Mr. Boekstael: We have worked assiduously over a period of
months to achieve what we have accomplished. We have
lmproved the charter. We have improved the Constitution. It is
now ready to be voted on and terminated tonight. But we have
acquiesced to the demands oi the opposition. They have said
that legality is the question. They have said to take it to the
Supreme Court. Thus, the resolution will be referred to the
Supreme Court, and when it comes back we will deal with it
expeditiously. We will send it for the seal of approval, which is
tit) different than what we do here every day of the year. ln
this House we enact laws. We send those laws to the Senate
where they are concurred in. Then the representative of the
Queen, the Governor General, gives royal assent to it. All we
lire doing, once we have approved it here, is to perform our
ilttties as parliamentarians. We are sending this resolution to
lfitiglzlnd for that final royal assent, and hereafter we will be
nble to deal with our own policies, our own Constitution, our
own rights in this country, by Canadians for Canadians.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Bruce Halliday (Oxford): Mr. Speaker, l realize that
my time is short~—
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Halliday: l think l would be remiss if l did not say one
thing, that is. that the pathetic scene we havejust witnessed in
this House now where, after a speech which was full of so
much tripe, delivered by the hon. member for St. Boniface
(Mr. Bockstael)-—
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear!
I ‘I‘r(u|s1ati0n]
The Acting Speaker (Mr. Blaker): Order, please. It being
0.45 p.m., it is my duty to interrupt the proceedings and put
fortliwith every question necessary to dispose of the amend-
ntents. pursuant to the provisions of the order made on
Wednesday, April 8, 1981.
The question is on the amendment standing in the name of
llu: hon. member for Provenchcr (Mr. Epp).
ls it the pleasure of the House to adopt the said
Some hon. Members: Agreed.
P.-imne hon. Members: No.
The Acting Speaker (Mr. Blaker): All those in favour will
|1lun.~:e say yea.
Home hon. Members: Yea.
‘l’he Acting Speaker (Mr. Blaker): All those opposed will
pltriisc sny nay.
The Constitution
Some hon. Members: Nay.
The Acting Speaker (Mr. Blaker): In my opinion the nays
have it.
And more lhanfive members having risen:
The Acting Speaker (Mr. Blaker): Call in the members.
The House divided on the amendment (Mr. Epp) which was
negatived on the following division:
Q (2215)
Carney (Miss)
(Vancouver Quadra)
(Halifax West)
u= Jung
(Gander<Twlllingale) Eeauehamp~Niquet (Mrs.) saga» (Miss) Benjamin Berger Blackburn Blaikie Blais Blakcr Bloomfield Boekslael (Division N0. 5 7) VEAS Messrs. Gilchrist Grecnaway Gurbin Gustafson Halliday Hamilton (Qu’Appel|e>Moose
(Swift Current-Maple
(South West Nova)
(St. Catharines)
cats (Mrs.)
at Bani:
at Corncillc

9470 COMMONS DEBATES April 23, l98l
The Constilulian
Dionne Killens (Mrs.) Olivier
(N0l‘tl\Llml.X:rit<1vtd- Knowles Orlikow
Miramiclti) Kristiansen Osiiguy
Dubois Lachance Ouellct
Dudes Lajoie Parent
Dttpont Laloride Parker
Duprns Lalrtnntagne Pellctier
Duquet Lander: Penner
Erola (Mrs-) Lang Pepin
Ethier Laniel Peterson
Evans Lapicrre Pinard
F=’B”§°” Lapoinle Portelance
Fisher (Charlevoix) Rae
Flmins Lapointe Regan
Flis _ (Beauce) Reid
Foster LeBlanc (Kenora-Rainy River)
Fox Lefebvre Riis
Fra ncis Lewycky
Frith Loiselle
Fulton Lonsdale
Gnravtt Lumlcy
Gauthier MacBain Rooney
Cvendron Ma4:Eachcri Rose
Gimaifll MnCGuigan Rossi
Gingras Macknsey
Gourd MacLaren
Gray MacLellan
Guilbauli Malépart
Harquail Maltais Simmons
Henderson Manly Skelly
Herbert Marceau siniiii
Hervieux-Fayette Mnssé Stollery
(Mrs-) Masters Tardif
Hopkins McCaulcy Tessier
Hudecki Mckae Tobin
Irwin Miller Tousigriant
Isabelle Mitchell Trudeau
ltiinuar (Mrs.) Turner
Jewell (Miss) Munro Veilleite
Johnston (Hamilton East) Watson
Joya! Murphy Wcatlterhcad
Kaplan Nicholson Whelan
Keeper (Miss) Yanakis
Kelly Ogle Yot|ng—-I70.
Q (2220)
Madam Speaker: The question now is on the amendment by
Mr. Knowles, seconded by Mr. lttinuar:
That tho proposed Coiisliluliori A01, I98] be amended by
fa) adding immediately after line 40 on page 9 the following section:
“28. Notwithstanding anything in this Charter, the rights and freedoms
referred to in it are guaranteed equally to male and female persons“;
(b) renumbering the subsequent clauses accordingly;
(C) adding to clause 54 inimediutely alter line Z0 on page 20 the following
“(¢‘) the rights of the aboriginal peoples of Canada set out in Part ll;“ and
(d) reletlering puragrnplis (0) to (Ii) ofclause 54 as paragraphs (d) to (i).
ls it the pleasure of the House to adopt the said
Some hon. Members: Agreed.
Some hon. Members: No.
Madam Speaker: All those in favour of the amendment will
please say yea.
Some hon. Members: Yea.
Madam Speaker: All those opposed will please say nay.
Some hon. Members: Nay.
Madam Speaker: In my opinion the yeas have it.
And more lhanflve members having rise/1:
Madam Speaker: Shall we dispense with the ringing of the
Some hon. Members: Agreed.
The House divided on the amendment (Mr. Knowles) which
was agreed to on the following division.
I (Z225)
Hégivi (Miss)
(South West Nova)
Carney (Miss)
(Vzri<>0\lVcr Quartra)
(Division N0. 58)
can (Mrs.)
(Halifax West)
Dc nuns
dc Corneillc
do long
Erola (Mrs )
(swirl C\1rrenl- Mn ple
Jewell (Miss)
Killens (Mrs.)

1\_pril23, 1981 COMMONS
Q (Z230)
l Translation]
Madam Speaker: l therefore declare the amendment
(Esquimalt-Szanich) .
(Hamilton East)
(St. Catharincs)
(Kendra-Rainy River)
Rossi t 5 ;
Yurl<o—26S. Amendment (Mr, Knowles) agreed to. Madam Speaker: The question is therefore on the amend~ ment of the hon. member for Nepcan-Carleton (Mr. Baker), llccottdcd by Mr. Clark: ’l‘|utt Motion Number 36 in the name of thc Minister of Justice, bc amended at l‘t>lln\vs:
lttl by deleting Clause l of Part l and substituting the following therefor:
“I. Affirming that
(rt) the Canadian nation is founded upon principles that acknowledge the
vtiprumucy of God, thc dignity and worth of thc human person and the
]ll)SlllOrl of lhc family in a society of frcc individuals and free institutions,
(Ir) individuals and institutions rcniain frcc only when freedom is fcundcd
upon rcspcct for moral and spiritual vnlucs rind the rulc of law,
lltu (Ymrrzliart Charter of Rig/rr.r and Frcedrmrs guararttcos the rights and
llttuilutus set out in it subject only to such rcasonablc limits prcscribcd by law
nu <‘l\|l be dcmonstrnblyjustificd in a free and dcmocratic society.“
(It) l)y tlclclirtg Clause 7 of Part l and substituting the following therefor:
Everyone has the right to life, liberty, sccurity of the person and
\!ll}ll)’IlICItl of propcrty and the right not to bc deprived thereof cxccpt in
nrutu-tluricu with the principles of fundamental justice.“
The Constitution
(c) by adding after Clause 27 of Part l the following new Clause:
“28. Notwithstanding anything in this Charter, thc rights and frccdoms
sct out in it are guaranteed equally to male and female persons.”
(d) by addingafter new Clausc 28 of Part l the following new Clause:
“Z9. Nothing in this Chartcr affects thc authority of Parliament to
legislate in respect of abortion and capital punishment.”
(c) by dclcting Clause 35 of Part lV and substituting the following therefor:
“J5. (1) No later than two months after the coming into force of this Act,
thc Prime Ministcr of Canada and the first ministers of the provinces shall
constitute at permanent confcrcncc to be designated the “Constitutional
Confercncc of Canada“ hereinafter referred to as the “C0nfcrencc”.
(2) The conference shall examine all Canadian constitutional laws and
propose amendmcnts necessary for the development of thc Canadian
(3) A conference convened under subsection (1) shall have included in its
agenda an item respecting constitutional matters than dircctly affcct the
aboriginal pcoplcs of Canada, including the identification and definition of
the rights of those peoples to bc included in thc Constitution of Canada and
thc Prime Minister of Canada shall invite representatives of those peoples to
participc in the discussions on that itcm.
(4) The Prime Minister of Canada shall invite elected reprcscntativcs of
the governments of the Yukon Territory and the Northwest Territories to
participate in the discussions on any itcm on the agenda of a confcrcncc
convened under subsection (1) that, in thc opinion of the Prime Minister,
directly affects the Yukon Territory and thc Northwest Tcrritorics.
(5) The conference shall mcct at least twicc cnch ycnr.
(6) The conference shall bc assisted by the Continuing Cornmittcc of
Ministers on the Constitution.”
(O by deleting Part V.
(g) by deleting Clause 45 of Part Vl and substituting the following thcrefor:
“45. (1) Art amendment to the Constitution of Canada may be made by
proclamation issued by thc Governor Gcncral undcr the Great Seal of
Canada where So authorized by
(0) resolutions of the Senate and House of Commons; and
(b) resolutions of the legislative assemblies of at least two-thirds of thc
provinces that have in the aggregate, according to the then latest decenni-
al census, at lcast fifty per ccnt of the population of all the provinces.
(2) Any amendment made undcr subsection (I) derogating from the
legislative powers, the proprietary rights or any othcr rights or privilcgcs of
the legislature or government of a province shall rcquirc a resolution
supported by a vote of a majority of the members of each of the Scnatc, of
the House of Commons, and of the rcquisitc number of legislative
(3) Any amendment madc undcr subsection (1) dcrogating from the
legislative powers, the proprietary rights or any other rights or privilcgcs of
the legislature or government of a province shall not have cffect. financially
or otherwise, in and for any province whose legislative assembly has
expressed its dissent thereto by resolution supported by a majority of the
members prior to the issuc of the proclamation, provided, however, that the
legislative assembly, by resolution supported by a majority of the members,
may subscqucntly withdraw its dissent and approve the amendment.
(4) The provisions of subsections (2) and (3) do not apply to tltc
Canadian Charter 0fRt’ghl.r and Freedoms.“
Q (2235)
(h) by adding after Clause 48 of Part Vl the following ncw Clause:
“49. An amendment to the Constitution of Canada may bc madc by
proclamation undcr section 45 or section 47, as appropriate, without 8
resolution of the Senate authorizing the issuc of thc proclamation if, within
one hundred and eighty days after tltc passage by the l-louse of Commons of
a resolution authorizing its issuc, the Senate has not passed such a rcsolu~

April 23, 1981
tion and if, at any time after the expiration of those one hundred and eighty
The Constitution
days. the House of Commons again passes the resolution.”
(i) by deleting clause 49 of Part Vt and substituting the following therefor:
“49. (I) The procedures for amendment prescribed by subsection 45(l)
and section 47 may be initiated by either the Senate or House of Commons
or by the legislative assembly of a province.
(2) A resolution authorizing an amendment made for the purposes of this
Part may be revoked at any tilne before the issue ofa proclamation.
(3) A resolution of dissent made for the purposes of this Part may be
revoked at any time before or after tltc issue of a proclamation.“
(j) by deleting clause 54 of Part Vl and substituting the following therefor:
“54. An amendment to the Constitution of Canada in relation to the
following matters may be made only in accordance with the procedure
prescribed by section 45(1):
(a) The Canadian Charter of Rig/ll: nml Freedoms;
(b) the commitments relating to equalization and regional disparities set
out in section 34:
(c) the powers of the Senate;
(ti) thc number of members by which a province is entitled to be
represented in the Senate;
(e) the method of selecting Senators and the residence qualifications of
Senators; and
(/) the principles of proportionate representation of the provinces in the
House of Commons prescribed by tlte Constitution of Canada.”
(k) by adding after clause 54 of Part VI the following new Clause:
“55. An amendment to the Constitution of Canada in relation to the
following matters may be made only by proclamation issucd by the Gover-
nor General uncler the Great Seal of Canada where so authorized by
resolutions of the Senate and the House of Commons and by the legislative
assembly of each province:
(a) the office of the Queen. the Governor General and the Lieutenant
Governor ofa province;
(I7) The right of a province to a number of members in the House of
Commons not less than the numbers of Senators representing the prov-
ince; and
(c) any of tho provisions of this Part)‘ and
(1) by deleting clause 63 of Part Vlll and substituting the following therefor:
“63. (l) This Act. or any provision thereof. shall come into force on a day
or days to be fixed by proclamation to be issued by the Governor General
under the Great Seal of Canada where so authorized no later than July t,
1983 by resolutions of the legislative assemblies of at least two-thirds of the
provinces that have in the aggregate, according to the then latest decennial
census. n population oiat least fifty per cent of all the provinces.
(2) A resolution made for the purposes of this section may be revoked
before the issue ofa proclamation authorized by it.“
The House divided on the amendment (Mr. Baker (Nepean-
Carleton)) which was negatived on the following division:
Q (2240)
(Division N0. 59)
Carney (Miss)
(Vancouver Quadra)
(Halifax West)
(Swift Current-Maple
Bégirl (Miss)
(South West Nova)
Coté (Mrs.)
M¢l<ml= McKinnon McKnight McLean McMillan Mitgcs Munro (Esquimalt-Saanich) NAYS Messrs. Dntttllin Dawson Deans Dc Dané do Corncillc dc Jong Dcntcrs Dcnigcr Dcsmnrais Dingwall Dion Dionne (cltiwttlimi) Dionne (N0rlhumbcrla|\d~ Miralniehi) Dutxtis Duclos Dupom Dupras Duouct [Zroln (Mrs.) Ethier Evans Fergusolt Ftshcr Fletrtittg Flis Foster Fox Francis Frith Fulton Garant Gauthier Gendron Ginlaiel Giltgrai Gourd Gray Guilbnttll Harquail Henderson Herbert Hervieux-Payctto (Mrs.) Mtlrla Neil Nicketson Nowlnn Obcrle Paproski Patterson Reid (st. Catharincs) Roche Schellenbergcr Scott (Hatrtiltomwentworth) Scott (Victoria-Haliburton) Shields Siddon Speyer Stevens Stewart Taylor Tltackcr Thomson Towers Vunkottghrtet Wenman Wilson Wise Wright——93. Hopkins Hovdebo Httdecki Irwin Isabelle lttil-luar Jewctt (Miss) Johnston Joysl Kflplall Keeper Kelly Killcn$ (Mrs.) Knowles Kristiansen Lachance Lajoic Lalonde Lamlnltagne Landets Lang Laniel Lapicrre Lapointe (Charlevoix) Lapointe (Bcauee) Lolllanc Leiehvre Lew)/Cky Leiselle Lonsdale Lumley MacBain MacEachen MacGuigan Mackascy MacLaren. MneLc|lan Malépart Maltais Manly Marceau Massé Masters McCauley Mekae 4.12.!!! 23) ‘Q81 COMMONS DEBATES 9473 Mlllnr Mltttltell (Mrs.) Mmtrtt illttmillon East) M\|I|)Ity Nltlllttlmn (Mist) Nynlront this tlllvler gtllltow .>| tty
(Kenorii-Rainy River)
Sargent nt
Amendment (Mr. Baker (Nepean-Carleton)) negatived.
Madam Speaker: The question is on the motion by Mr.
Plnttrd, seconded by Mr. Chrétien:
lltnt the prttpmctl ct-ttttittttit-tt At-t. text he tttitnttdcd
(ti) by adding immediately after the heading “CANADIAN CHARTER OF
IIIUHTS AND FREEDOMS“ on page 3, the following:
“Whereas Canada is founded upon principles that recognize the supremacy
of God and the rule oflawz“
(li) by striking out in clause ll of the French version, line 36 on page S and
-tttlttttituting the following:
“déc|aré coupable et pnni;”
(tr) by striking out subclause 33(|) of the French version at lines 27 to 29 on
ttttge I0 and substituting the following:
“J3. (l) Les droitst ancestraux on issus de traites, des peuples autochtoncs
tltt Cttnnda sent, par les prt’-sentes, eonfirrnés.”
til) by striking out in subclause 45(i). lines 20 to 24 on page 16 and substituting
lilo following:
lta it the pleasure of the House to adopt the said
Some hon. Members: Agreed.
Some hon. Members: No.
Madam Speaker: In my opinion, the yeas have it
Cttll in the members and we shall dispense with the ringing
t)l’ the bell.
agreed to on the following division:
Q H245)
tttttttr tMit-t)
lllttt itlrtmt
(Division N0. 60)
(South wntt Nova)
cats (Mrs.)
De Bane
de Cornciile
dc long
the House divided on the motion (Mr. Pinard), which was
Erola (Mrs.)
Jewctt (Miss)
Carney (Miss)
(Vancouver Quadm)
(Halifax West)
Q (2250)
The Constitulian
Killens (Mrs.)
(Hamilton East)
(Swift Current-Maple
(Kenora»Rainy River)
Vurko~I 73.
(St. Catharines)
Madam Speaker: I declare the motion carried.

9474 COMMONS DEBATES April 23, 1981
The Constitution
It being ten 0’clock and pursuant to order made Thursday,
‘ ‘ A ‘I 9 1981, this House stands adjourned until Tuesday,
I would like to wish all hon. members a well-earned holiday. P” Y
1‘ ‘ 5; hm May I2 1981, at two o’clock p.m., pursuant to Standing
As is customary before we break, I would tke to mv e . »
members to room 16 for a drink, where apart from sharing in Order 2(U~
the good cheer, they will have occasion to meet some of the
S k of the Commonwealth countries who are also invited At 1050 pom. the House adjourned until Tuesday, May 12,
pea ers
to meet some of the members. 1981 at 2 p.m.

Read less

Leave a Reply