TWO international bridges linking Canada and the United States have been opened in recent months-the Thousand Islands Bridge and that connecting Point Edward with Port Huron.
Neither would have been built had it not been for the automobile.
Both, in a way, are symbolic of other bridges for which the automobile is responsible.
By it, not only is distance bridged for millions of Canadians. It is the span via which thousands of industrial workers gain a livelihood; via which thousands of primary producers attain a market.
At this date, 1938 statistics are not complete. The 1937 figures tell a story which, from year to year, increases in significance.
Last year, 207,463 motor vehicles were produced in Canada; 153,046 passenger cars, 54,417 trucks. Their wholesale value was $123,757,293.
The domestic market took 139,372 of these vehicles; 68,091 were exported.
What did these figures mean to Canadian workmen and their wives and families?
The average monthly employment in Canadian manufacturing plants was 14,946.
Salaries and wages paid $22,138,991.
In addition, manufacturers of parts and materials, located in forty-eight different municipalities, employed 16,548 workers. They paid in salaries and wages, $20,930,982.
Altogether, the building of motor cars gave work to 31,494 people.
They were paid $43,069,973.
A large proportion of that sum was spent in the purchase of foodstuffs, clothing and various other commodities which, in turn, provided work and a market for produce.
That isn’t all.
To Canadian transport systems the automobile industry and the parts manufacturers paid $8,972,222 in freight charges.
The auto manufacturers paid to the Dominion Government $6,919,515 in duty, import taxes and federal income taxes.
Manufacturers of parts and materials paid to Dominion, provincial and municipal governments $3,291,153 in taxes.
Automobile plants bought $831,318 worth of fuel and electricity.
These were some of the widespread benefits from new cars made last year.
Think of the industry in more general terms. Provincial governments collected $64,367,852 in gasoline taxes and registration fees.
Road building and maintenance gave employment to thousands of men.
Canadian oil companies sold 718,620,000 gallons of gasoline. Each stage, from refinery to filling station, provided employment.
More than that, last year 4,511,840 cars entered Canada for touring purposes. Those who travelled in them spent $181,332,000 in this country.
In Toronto, from November 26 to December 3, many thousands of Canadians will visit the National Motor Show. They will be inspecting the 1939 models, last words in engineering skill and design.
Those who place orders will be helping to build still more bridges—bridges which will link men to jobs.
The Royal Visit
WE HOPE that the Canadian officials entrusted with the making of arrangements for the visit of the King and Queen to the Dominion next year will take note of some of the very sensible suggestions being made by the press.
The Toronto Star has rightly pointed out that the desire of the masses of the people to see Their Majesties should be of first importance.
It also urges that the tour should not be so crowded with events as to weary the royal visitors.
The Ottawa Journal, commenting on a suggestion that a royal court be held so that “loyal Canadians will have an opportunity of personally doing homage to their sovereign,” says it “would be the last to say a word against it, but a royal court can only take in a comparatively small number. What is wanted much more, and what Canadians will appreciate much more, is a slow royal progress through the streets, enabling the ordinary citizens, the humblest with the greatest, the youngest with the oldest, to greet and show affection for Their Majesties.”
The Journal further suggests that in connection with all ceremonies there should be a fiveininute-speech rule, and that the reading of illuminated addresses (it calls the practice “a process of refined torture”) should be banned.
The task of planning Their Majesties’ Canadian tour will be a difficult one. It will be lightened if those who have the responsibility are guided by the paramount fact that the people as a whole, and not just officeholders and “society,” are best capable of extending the nation’s welcome to their King and Queen.
Seal of Health
THE HEAD of the Montreal Health Department, Dr. Adelard Groulx, recently quoted statistics demonstrating that in the Province of Quebec the tuberculosis death rate for 1936 was 93 3 per 100,000 population compared with 89.1 in Nova Scotia, 59.1 in Manitoba and 29.8 in Ontario.
Dr. Groulx declared that Ontario’s lower rate could be explained by lower birth rates and by the fact that tuberculosis prevention is taught earlier.
The more people know about a disease, the easier it is to prevent it. The earlier it is detected, the easier it is to cure.
The world’s death rate from tuberculosis has been cut to less than one third of what it was at the turn of the century.
This is due not only to better diagnostic and treatment facilities, but to a better informed public.
Yet tuberculosis still takes more lives than any other sickness during the ages between fifteen and forty-five.
Much still remains to be done in the way of protective education and in the maintenance and expansion of facilities for early diagnosis and efficient treatment.
To what already has been accomplished, the national Christmas Seal campaign for the Canadian Tuberculosis Association has made a valuable contribution.
Since the idea was launched twelve years ago, the money collected annually has been directly applied to the fight against tuberculosis.
Through hundreds of clinics supported by the Christmas Seal Fund, thousands of families have benefitted and will benefit from diagnostic and treatment facilities, from free advice, free followup and nursing services.
Hundreds of children have been sent and will be sent to camps where resistance against disease is built up.
To many thousands of Canadians throughout the land is being brought the gospel of the Preventability of Tuberculosis.
No matter what your position in life may be, you can assist in furthering this work.
Whether you can afford a cent or a dollar, you can purchase Christmas Seals.
Between now and Christmas they will be available in every part of the Dominion.
Buy as many as you can. The smallest donation will help to save somebody’s life.
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