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I second Mr. Gash's motion.

MR. GASH: In answer to Mr. Day, may I say this is not a new matter before the Canadian Bar Association or the other Bar Associations of the Provinces. The Ontario Bar Association on various occasions at their annual meeting have placed themselves on record in the most unequivocal way. As to the Canadian Bar Association, on two occasions we also have affirmed the principle. The idea of this resolution is merely to recite the facts and possibly, if the Council or the Association saw fit, to forward copies of this resolution to the Premier and the Minister of Justice, so that in plain form they will see, from the mere recital of the facts, the condition now existing and the necessity of taking immediate action.

MR. DAY: I would ask for the yeas and nays. I will call for them. I moved in amendment, and my motion is not seconded, and the resolution be referred back to committee and a copy of the report sent out.

MR. TILLEY (St. John): I second the amendment, Mr. Chairman. The proceedings this afternoon, I must say, remind me, as a member of the Legislature of my own province, of the reading of a Bill the first, second and third times all in one day, on the ground of emergency and with the unanimous consent of the House. These important matters that we have had submitted to us yesterday are going through very rapidly, with about one-tenth of our membership discussing them. I think matters of this kind can stand for the next meeting, when they can be goven proper and full consideration, and I have very much pleasure in seconding the motion.

MR. GASH: The resolution really provides that Quebec, if Quebec desires, may be exempted. We may remember that both at the last session of Parliament and at the session previous to that, Bills on the dissolution and annulment of marriage were submitted. On the first occasion, that is, two years ago, the Bill originated in the House of Commons and had, I think, two readings, the motion being carried by very large majorities, two to one. However, the Bill was dropped. At the last session the order was reversed. Two bills, ultimately were drafted and submitted to the Senate. Those Bills, in fact, were presented after conferences, in which I myself, participated, I may say, with the mover of the motion and also with the member who took charge of them in the Commons. Those Bills were both considered by the Senate and the Senate accepted both those Bills, by very large majorities indeed. Even the Quebec members themselves submitted that it was not a matter in which Quebec had any consideration, as Quebec was expressly excluded by the terms of the Bills and those particular measures referred only to Ontario and Prince Edward Island; Prince Edward Island by reason of the fact, of course, as you know, Sir, of the antiquated form of its law-very largely on that account.

That legislation upon these measures will no doubt be forthcoming at next session, and in view of that fact it is, I think, very important that this resolution should be passed and that the feeling of the Association upon the point of the proper uniformity of our laws on a matter which is so fundamental and vital to the whole state, as a state, should go before the Government as an expression of the opinion of this Association.

MR. DAY: As the mover of the amendment may I ask, why make ourselves ridiculous by dealing with this thing now? Talk about the Seven Tailors of Tooley Street. Here are the seventeen lawyers of Canada dealing with this very important thing. The proof of a man's interest is that he stays and votes on the matter. Now, you can pass it on to the committee, and we are going to do this with other resolutions, as to judges and others, instead of having it carried by seventeen lawyers out of the whole Bar Association. Really, I think that those who want this would do better if they would accept my amendment and refer it back to committee.

MR. MCWHINNEY: The members here are not responsible for the fact that this comes up at the last. Of course, some questions must come up first and others after. The situation is not of our making.

A MEMBER: Other things just as important have gone before this meeting. The argument that Mr. Day has put up is just the argument that we hear every time. It is the do-nothing argument, that has been going on for years. This subject has been up every year, and this is not its first appearance. SOME MEMBERS: Question! Question!

THE CHAIRMAN: I will put the amendment first.

MR. C. G. DUFFY: As I understand, the spirit of this resolution is a recommendation to the Parliament of Canada to pass legislation on the divorce question for the whole of Canada. I wish to acquaint this association, before the vote is taken, of the action which was taken by the Legislature of Prince Edward Island at last session. When somebody proposed a divorce court for Ontario and somebody else suggested that Prince Edward Island should be tacked on as well, the Legislature of our province, by a unanimous vote, without a dissenting voice from any of the members of our Legislature, passed a resolution and forwarded it to the Dominion Government, asking that a divorce court be not established in Prince Edward Island. I think that perhaps the members of this Association if they are going to vote, ought to be advised of that fact.

MR. LUDWIG : Was it not because of the fact that Prince Edward Island considered it had an Act which already was sufficient for its purposes?

MR. W. E. BENTLEY: I am from Prince Edward Island and happen to know a little about that matter, Sir. That resolution, it is true, was passed by the House of Assembly unanimously, disapproving of the idea of enabling Prince Edward Island to grant divorces by establishing a divorce court, the resolution stating certain facts, or alleged facts, which were entirely contrary to existing circumstances. Prince Edward Island had adopted the principle of divorce nearly one hundred years ago. It had established a court. Unfortunately the court was unworkable, by reason of its being constituted of the Lieutenant-Governor-in-Council. As you can well understand, a court of that nature would not operate or function. The principle had been adopted, however, and it was simply asking that a workable court be substituted in place of an unworkable court. That resolution, however, it is true, was passed unanimously by the Legislature. Unfortunately, no notice of that matter given, and the members who voted for it did not have the necessary opportunity of understanding what they were voting for. The moment that it was announced—

MR. DUFFY Mr. Chairman, I have to raise a point of order. I know they would in my Legislature. I do not know that Mr. Bentley has any right, if he admits the resolution was passed, to question the propriety or the intelligence of the members who voted upon it. I do not think we ought to enter upon a discussion of that here.

MR. BENTLEY: The moment information of the passing of that resolution was given through the press the next morning, a number of persons who had voted for it were interviewed and announced that they had not understood the question at all; otherwise they would certainly not have voted for it; and I believe that, although they did not care to commit themselves in a public way, they communicated their more mature view on this question to the proper officials at Ottawa, who were then dealing with the question.

Moreover, the different Protestant associations, the Ministerial Association of Charlottetown and all the Protestant churches in the Province voted unanimously and passed resolutions, sending them to Ottawa, asking for this legislation and pointing out the grievous condition of affairs, under which such a court was an absolute necessity if we wanted to have any proper conditions in that province. So it is a matter on which we in Prince Edward Island, if we have any regard or consideration for these persons who know what the conditions are in matters which we can all guess at, but I cannot take time to describe-if we have any regard for them, we want this legislation passed just as soon as it can possibly be done, and I strongly urge the members here to vote in favour of this legislation, to put this Association on record again as in favour of this legislation, with a view to strengthening the hands of those who may have in charge legislation similar

to last year, which would give Prince Edward Island and Ontario their divorce courts, and in order that Parliament may go further although this matter cannot be dealt with, no doubt, at the next session-that is, pass a uniform Act. That will come up later. But we want our Courts at once.


MR. DAY: Is it not after four o'clock? Are we not automatically adjourned?

*THE CHAIRMAN: You have heard the amendment. I will put it first.

The amendment was negatived.

MR. Day: I ask the number of those voting for the main motion.

The motion was agreed to.

THE CHAIRMAN: The ayes have it.

On motion of Mr. McWhinney, the meeting adjourned.

*Formal objection in writing has been taken that this resolution was passed after the stipulated hour of adjournment, and the matter will, therefore, be referred to the Council to decide whether the resolution was regularly passed, or under the circumstances should be regarded as a fair expression of the views of the Association.


The Annual Dinner was held on Thursday, September 2nd, 1920, at 8 p.m., at the Chateau Laurier, Ottawa. The President, Sir James Aikins, K.C., presided.

The speakers were:- Rt. Hon. Viscount Cave; Hon. William Howard Taft, representative of the American Bar Association; Hon. William H. Wadhams, of the Court of General Sessions, New York, representative of the New York State Bar Association; Rt. Hon. Arthur Meighen, Prime Minister of Canada; Rt. Hon. Sir Robert Borden; Hon. R. M. Dennistoun, of the Court of Appeal, Manitoba, formerly Judge Advocate General, C.E.F.

His Excellency the Governor General honoured the Association by his presence, and, at the conclusion of the programme of addresses, proposed, in very felicitous terms, the health of the Chairman.


On the afternoon of Friday, September 3rd, the members of the Association and their friends were the guests of His Excellency the Governor General and the Duchess of Devonshire at a most enjoyable Reception and Garden Party at Government House.


August 31st, 1920

MEETINGS-The Council during the past year held two General Meetings, one at Winnipeg on August 28th, 1919, and one at Ottawa on March 6th, 1920.

When in Ottawa attending the last mentioned meeting, Members of the Council and other prominent barristers representing the Bars of all the Provinces waited on the Minister of Justice and other Members of the Government, urging increased compensation for the Judges. Legislation providing for increases was passed at the last Session of Parliament in June. Comment on the details of the measure will no doubt be made in the Report of the Committee on Administration of Justice.

PERSONNEL Since the last Annual Meeting three members of the Council have been raised to the Bench, the Honourable E. Edwin Howard having become a Member of the Superior Court of Quebec and more recently member of the Court of King's Bench of Quebec, the Honourable E. Fabre Surveyer having become a member of the Superior Court of Quebec, and the Honourable John F. Orde a member of the Supreme Court of Ontario.

Honourable Mr. Justice Orde resigned his position as Honorary Treasurer but consented to remain associated with the Association as a member of the Council for Ontario. His place as Honorary Treasurer was filled by the election of Mr. George F. Henderson, K.C., of Ottawa.

DEATH-We regret to report the death of Mr. George S. Gibbons of London, a member of the Council since 1918. His place was filled by the election of Mr. O. L. Lewis, K.C., of Chatham.

MEMBERSHIP-The year has been marked by a very gratifying increase in membership, as will be seen by the following table.

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