M.R.S.S.S. Highlights

Thursday, April 22, 1965

[This report, most of which was not written by me, was spread over three pages in the Gazette, taking up around a single broadsheet page in total.]

On Wednesday morning, April 14, an assembly was held for Grades 10 and 11 and other interested students. The purpose of this assembly was for the giving of reports of various trips in which M.R.S.S.S. students have participated.

After the singing of O Canada, Mr. Voth introduced Miss Kerr, head of the Social Studies department, who chaired the assembly.

First to speak was Mr. Zebroff. The main points of his speech are given in this article taken from the Ridge Rambler of Thursday, April 15.


“This year, Haney, along with nine other B.C. Communities, has been selected to be a receiving centre for the Youth Travel programme which is being sponsored by the Canadian Confederation Centennial committee of B.C.

“This youth travel program has been organized to provide an interchange of high school students among communities in the different provinces. Each community hosts 24 students for one week in the summer, and subsequently each community sends 24 students to visit in some other Canadian community. On the whole, there is a three-way exchange.

“During the summer of 1965, Haney will be the Receiving Centre for 24 students from Montreal. These students, plus two escorts, will be arriving in Haney on or about July 8th. Later in the summer, on August 16, 24 students from the Haney region will be travelling to Edmunston, New Brunswick to visit for one week among families in a generally French-speaking community. The students from the Haney region have been selected from various Fraser Valley East schools: 2 from Garibaldi, 3 from Pitt Meadows, 9 from Maple Ridge, 8 from Mission, and 2 from Agassiz.

“It is hoped that there will be a community effort to ensure the success of this -- letters have been sent to various service clubs in the Maple Ridge district asking for their support to help this endeavour to develop inter provincial friendship.”


Following this, reports were heard from the three students who travelled to Victoria to view the provincial legislature in action during the second last week of February.


“I am very happy to have been chosen as a representative of our school on this year's trip to the Legislative Buildings. It was very impressive to observe this province's government in session, and to see several points of interest in Victoria.

“Michael Quigley will speak on the Legislature itself, and Pat Blow will report on the second day's activities.

“We left Haney at 3:30 on Wednesday, February 17, and arrived at the Stageline Depot in Vancouver where we met the other 40 members of our group. The teenagers in our group came from schools ranging from Powell River and the Lower Fraser Valley to 100 Mile House.

“We had many interesting things to discuss and get opinions of. I recall one discussion I had with some of the fellows was about Vietnam. The voyage across the gulf was spent eating supper and meeting these other teenagers. At the Dominion Hotel in Victoria Mike and I were given a very nice room furnished with a combination radio-TV which provided us with evening entertainment.

“After breakfast the next morning, we walked to the Empress Hotel for a tour of its facilities. We were greeted in the excellently furnished reception hall, and conducted into the dining room which contains the paintings of Canada's "first ladies." We then toured the large kitchen, the ballroom and comfortable men's lounge. It really is a magnificent place.

“From there we went to the Crystal Pool, which is enclosed in frosted glass, and contains not only the swimming pool, but also a dance floor and dining hall.

“We proceeded through Thunderbird Park and saw a couple of totem poles in the making as well as the historical sailing boat Tillicum which sailed around the world several years ago.

“Arriving at the legislative buildings, we went directly to the assembly chamber and were allowed to sit in whichever chair we wished. The Sergeant-at-Arms, Mr. Ashby,greeted us and spoke on the day's legislative procedure.

“We were taken into the House Speaker's Chamber where Mr. Murray spoke to us of his job in the assembly. He also told us of the interesting history of his position.

“A few centuries ago in England, the Parliamentary system had just begun, but they had as yet no control over the crown. The King frequently sent his personal representative to the assembly. He would stride into the assembly chamber and announce what the King wanted them to do. Several of the assembly members would openly denounce this method of introducing bills and reject most of his demands.

“The King's representative then left the chamber, returned to the King, and informed on those who had dissented with his wishes. Those who had objected to the King were then arrested, tortured, and in many cases executed. The assembly soon realized that they couldn't afford to lose their members in such numbers, yet they still had to maintain their obligation to the people by objecting to the King's methods.

“They decided to elect someone from their group to act as House of Commons speaker. Of course, no one wanted to be house speaker, so, when elected, the unfortunate member had to be forcibly taken to his position by his fellow members. Several of these House Speakers were executed for speaking against the King. By the late 1600s, the Parliament became the real ruler of England, and they lost no more house speakers.

“In the present day legislature the House speaker is still there, but his job is somewhat changed to controller of the assembly proceedings.

“Mr. Murray told us that by tradition a newly elected House Speaker must still show some resistance to being placed in his position as a reminder of his colleagues' sacrifice to get democracy.

“He ended our discussion by showing us the mace and presenting us each with a replica pin of it.

“Mr. Murray then took us to lunch in the MLA's lunchroom. After lunch we took a tour of the provincial library and B.C.'s historical archives. Here I found a very interesting piece of British Columbia history. It was the diary from the 2-pounder signal gun on board a ship at the Nootka Conference in 1792.

“From 2 to 4 o'clock we were seated in the Speaker's Gallery for the afternoon session of the Legislature.

“After this session we visited the Museum of native B.C. animals and saw collections of the various bugs, birds, and beasts found in B.C. On the way back to the hotel we stopped to tour the original home of the first doctor of Victoria, Doctor Helmcken and also to tour the Victoria Wax Museum.

“After supper that evening at the hotel, we were given free time and yours truly was among the group let in free to see the movie Goldfinger showing across the street.

“After the show, we returned to the Legislature for the evening session. Those six people from Dewdney riding had an interesting talk and snack with Mr. Dave Barrett. We returned to the hotel at 11:00.

“I had a great time in Victoria seeing the sights and points of interest, meeting and conversing with other teenagers, and above all seeing the provincial government in action. The food was great, the accommodations were excellent, and the agenda well prepared. I hope that those of you who are fortunate enough to be chosen to go to Victoria next year as a part of the Democracy in Action program will enjoy it as much as I did. Thank you.”


“As Bruce has already mentioned. I am going to speak on the second day of our trip. On Friday morning after breakfast, our group boarded a chartered bus to Royal Roads, the Canadian Military College near Victoria. We arrived at the main building of the college, where we saw a film on the three Canadian military colleges located at Kingston, Saint Jean-de-Baptiste, and Royal Roads.

“After the film, we again boarded the bus for a tour of the academy. At the indoor swimming pool, the head of the college's Physical Education department talked to us about their physical education which includes fourteen different sports, ranging from swimming to squash. The size of the swimming pool was indeed Olympic, measuring seventy-five by thirty feet overall and from four to eleven feet deep, with the water heated to a warm eighty-two degrees. After this, we stopped at the dining hall to have something to eat, and to talk to some of the cadets, After the taking of a group picture, we boarded the bus to return to Victoria in time for a smorgasbord lunch at the hotel.

“After lunch, we were taken on a tour of Victoria and the surrounding municipalities. The bus passed by Craigdarroch Castle, and through the exclusive residential section of Oak Bay. We travelled along the waterfront and through Beacon Hill Park to arrive at the Legislature for the afternoon session.

“Most of the group left the Legislature about four o'clock to return to the hotel. After supper, we travelled, again by bus, to the University of Victoria. There we toured the large library which contains over a hundred and seventy-five thousand books and will be expanded to hold seven hundred and fifty thousand by 1970. In the library are also many periodicals, microfilmed newspapers, and a collection oi original art works. The registrar of the University talked to us about the library and the overall plan of the University.

“The group returned to the hotel and downtown Victoria where we spent a free evening.

“The next morning we got up at the early hour of 5:30 to board the bus to catch the seven o'clock ferry. Breakfast was eaten on board the boat. We arrived at the Vancouver bus depot just in time to catch the 9:25 bus leaving for Haney.

“I'd just like to say that it was a real honour for me to be chosen to go on this trip. I found it a very interesting and educational trip. Thank you.”


“We first entered the House on Thursday morning, and sat at the MLA's desks while the Sergeant-at-Arms, Mr. Ashby, talked to us about house procedure. As in the Canadian House of Commons, the government is to the right of the Speaker, and the opposition to the left. After a talk with the Speaker, Mr. Murray, in his office, we returned to the House for a group picture with the Speaker, and then went to lunch and a tour of some of the Parliamentary Buildings.

“The first session which we saw was the one which took place that afternoon. We were seated in the Speaker's Gallery located above the Speaker's chair, and in the gallery opposite. Making notes, taking photographs, or talking are not permitted in the galleries. The only conversations carried on not on the floor are those in the press gallery, slightly below the speaker's gallery.

“At two o'clock, the slight commotion on the floor below was interrupted by a cry of "Make way for Mr. Speaker!" The speaker entered, escorted by the Sergeant-at-Arms, carrying the mace, symbol of the Speaker's authority. After opening prayers, the House got down to the afternoon's business.

“First was a short discussion on the disaster which had occurred the night before at the Granduc Mines in Atlin riding. The government said it would lend necessary aid, and several of the members somberly expressed their regret at the tragedy. As the news reports on the landslide were still coming in, no definite decisions on government action were reached.

“One of the MLAs brought up the point that in the galleries that afternoon were students from many parts of the province, there as members of the Democracy-in-Action group. We were welcomed with vigorous desk-thumping by the MLAs.

“Following this, Mr. Chant, the minister of Public Works, spoke for slightly under two hours on health and welfare and hospitals. His speech was exceedingly hard to follow as it was very prosaic, and few of our group members actually followed it.

“After Mr. Chant's speech, which was accompanied by frequent heckling from the opposition, Mrs. Louis Haggen, NDP member for Grand-Forks -Greenwood, rose to speak on a suggestion that the name of her constituency be changed to Boundary. Our group left about halfway through her speech to tour the Provincial Museum and see other points in Victoria.

“The evening session was reported to be a very exciting one, but some of us saw only a few minutes of it. Our group arrived late at the Legislature after seeing the film Goldfinger, and when we reached the House galeries, the students from Dewdney riding went to the MLAs lunch room to have coffee with Mr. Dave Barrett, our MLA. However, also in the lunchroom were, at times, Mr. Gaglardi, Mr. Peterson, and Mr. Perrault. The House adjourned shortly after our talk with Mr. Barrett was over, and we arrived back at the hotel about 11:00.

“The next day, we had a more interesting session to watch. First speaker in the afternoon was Mr. Ralph Loffmark, minister of Industrial Development, Trade, and Commerce, who spoke on mental hospitals and other subjects. Mr. Loffmark encountered much opposition from the Liberals, to whom he sang in rebuttal, "You'll Just Be A Memory". He referred to the Liberals abusively as "the grump Grit group", and said he did not know if Mr. Perrault's red tie was his tie or his tongue hanging out. Also Mr. Loffmark said Mr. McKay, Liberal MLA for Fernie, had walked "the last degrading political mile." Mr. McFarlane of the Liberals arose to protest this charge, and Mr. Strachan, leader of the Opposition, arose on a point of order. Mr. Peterson jumped up and yelled at Mr. Strachan to "sit down!" which was followed by violent heckling from all parties. The Speaker finally maintained order, and said that for the rest of Mr. Loffmark's speech there would be no interruptions. A period of solemnity followed as the Minister concluded his speech.

“Most of the group left at this time, but five of us stayed for the remainder of the session. There were Bruce and myself, and three students from Chilliwack.

“Next to speak was Mr. Stupich, NDP member for Nanaimo and the Islands, who also spoke on a variety of subjects. Most of the Social Credit members showed their interest by leaving periodically, with about eight of the 33 government members in their seats at one time.

“Final speaker of the afternoon was Mr. Bert Price, member for 2nd Vancouver-Burrard, and the Social Credit party whip. Mr. Price spoke on everything from bingo to bassinets at the Vancouver General hospital. He also spoke on achieving peace in Vietnam, illicit supermarket price markings, and gasoline taxes.

“After Mr. Price concluded his speech, authorization of a bill arrived from the Lieutenant-Governor. The speaker stepped down from the chair and let the messenger read the proclamation. Immediately after, the House adjourned.

“I found our trip to Victoria very interesting, not only because we saw the Legislature in action, and the sights around Victoria, but because it gave me an opportunity to talk to the other students who had come from schools ranging from Pender Harbour to Williams Lake. The whole trip was very pleasant, and I'd like to thank all those who made it possible.”


Next on the agenda were reports from members of the United Nations Club on the high school conference held at Seattle on March 27, 1965.

First to speak was John Evans, who expressed the aims of the United Nations club in our school.

JOHN EVANS What is the most important idea that persists in our minds today? The thing that comes to my mind is the United Nations organization. Once before a world organization was allowed to fall apart and what followed? -- war. Most good thinkers today are agreed that the collapse of that organization should never have been allowed to occur, but it did and for what reason? The disinterest of people.

“If we are not to experience this dreadful happening again we must believe in and take an active interest in the organization of the peoples of the world.

“Right here in our school we have a nucleus of students taking an interest in this international idea. It will be kept alive if the interest is strong enough. We keep saying the fate of the world is in the hands and minds of youth. We can accept that challenge and do something about it or -- well?

“Our club is working towards an understanding of these problems. The students have attended two model United Nations conferences in West Vancouver and Seattle. Getting to know more about our neighbours to the south was not the least important feature of the weekends.

“Of course all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy, so Jack had a bit of a fling too. He sightsaw in Seattle, went to private house parties and had a long, long bus ride. These students would like to thank both Mr. Voth and Mr. Zebroff for making this trip possible. There are also many interesting things coming up. There will be a seven day conference at UBC on the problems in Africa in late August -- two of our students will attend. Representatives from African nations will be present to speak to the delegates. A trip to the United Nations in New York is in the planning for four students attending the UBC seminar. The club hopes to send delegates to conferences to be held in Vancouver and Ellensberg, Washington.

“The club wants the next Model United Nations conferences to be held in Haney. This is a big undertaking, but with everyone's co-operation, it can and will be done. It will mean a lot to our school and our community. It will be proving that the youth of this district really has at heart what the United Nations stands for — International Peace and Freedom.”

Nancy Botham then spoke about the conference in Seattle:


“To attend the United Nations Assemblies in both West Vancouver and Seattle gave me great insight into just how the U.N. operates. The United Nations is divided up into six different blocs: The Western, Communist, Asian, African, Arab, and Latin American. The different countries in the blocs can bring up resolutions and if passed by a two-thirds majority in the bloc, they can then be voted on by the general assembly, which is a union of all the blocs.

“The different delegates in these Model Assemblies must try to think and vote following the policies of these countries they represent, and not using their own personal opinions Some of the major issues which were voted on at the conference in Seattle were: 1. The admission of Red China to the U.N., which was voted down. 2. The problems concerning the policy of apartheid in South Africa. 3. Canada proposed that a peacekeeping force should be readied and used if necessary in Indonesia. This was passed by the general assembly. 4. The payments which the U.N. has not received from Russia and France. Discussing and listening to different speakers talk on the major issues which are shaking the world, they appeared to me more of a reality as they had never done before. I think we have to truly understand, the problems which are taking place in these different countries before we can even hope to help them or discuss and make opinions on them.”

Next to speak on the conference was Julie Flowerdew:


“A high school Model U.N. conference at Shoreline High School in Seattle was held on March 27, 1965. I am here to give you some idea of what it was like.

“Saturday morning was taken up by Bloc meetings and committee meetings. The Bloc meetings were held first to enable the countries in the various blocs to establish a policy.

“At 8:45 we proceeded to the cafeteria to hear an address via Tele-Lecture from New York by John Gates. After his speech we were able to ask him questions concerning the problems of the world today.

“For the next three hours, we split up into different committees. I was on the committee dealing with administrative and budgetary problems. In our committee meeting we put forth and voted on a number of resolutions to do with the problems of the United Nations today. The resolutions which were passed by our committee and proceeded as a majority to the General Assembly were dealing with the Cyprus crisis. Colombia felt there was a need to bring up a resolution which, if passed, would prohibit the Russians from intervening in the affairs of Cyprus. As a Venezuelan delegate, I voted wholly in favor of the resolution because our country is distinctly anti-communist.

“After a short break for lunch there was a short committee meeting for the purpose of determining a speaker's list for the General Assembly.

“At the General Assembly which constituted the afternoon activities, eight resolutions were put forth and six and a half were passed. The first resolution dealt with South Africa's apartheid policies. This resolution was broken in half and while the first part was passed the second failed to do so. The i resolution following concerned the admission of the People's Republic of China (Communist China) into the U.N. Red China narrowly missed being accepted into the U.N. After the votes were counted and the resolution was defeated, a delegate rose and asked for all "peace loving nations" to leave the assembly.

“Among those who left was Cuba, who considered herself "peace loving". The next resolution dealt with the Indonesian aggression being displayed in the Malaysian Federation. This resolution was passed. The economic and social council submitted the next resolution which called for the removal of economic tariffs on trade -- this was also passed.”


Arlene Rhodes concluded with her speech, also about the Seattle conference:

“One more political question was raised, concerning Cyprus. As it was passed, the Soviet Union was asked to withdraw its aid from the Greek Cypriot front.

“The last resolutions were less concerned with political matters than previously and more related with civil rights and social welfare.

“The first one, the category of the economic and social council, dealt with the taking of positive action on the matter of birth control in the countries that desire it. This issue caused much controversy due to the number of Catholics in the assembly. The resolution was passed although many voted for personal reasons and not as their representative countries would do in the United Nations.

“The next two resolutions were concerned with the human rights issue in South Africa and the world over. After hearing constructive arguments from both sides, the resolution was passed. South Africa was condemned for its apartheid policy and was urged to bring about racial equality. The other rights resolution, which was also passed, gave the U.N. the right to censure or remove the vote of any nation not complying to the recommendations of the U.N. on human rights issues.

“After the general assembly a banquet was held in the cafeteria. The after-dinner speaker was an ex-member of the Peace Force, stationed for two years in the Philippines. He had, during his stay, travelled in south-east Asia. He discussed many of the vital aspects of this area in the world today.

“The evening time was spent with a hootenanny led by various folk-singing groups and a dance.

“As representatives from Denmark, we had to vote in the assembly as we felt Denmark would and not as we as persons would. This gave us valuable experience in diplomatic relations on a world level.”

The assembly closed with the singing of The Queen.

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