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Order Number 86 of the Department of Labor of the United States, and also to the numerous conversations which have taken place between members of your Department and this Legation on this subject. In the course of your note you were kind enough to employ the following language: “Before the expiration of the time limit specified in Order Number 86, within which aliens of this class must present quota visas, it will probably be found that all who have hitherto held border-crossing permits issued to them by the Department of Labor since the quota system became effective, will not, by reason of the numerical restrictions of the quota law, be able to receive immigration visas. Should this prove to be the case, I shall be glad at once to request the Secretary of Labor to allow further time in which these people may gain a status in conformity with the law and the Secretary has already assured me that any such request will receive the most sympathetic consideration possible."
The time limit of December 1st. which was set in this Order is now only a few days away. It has become apparent that a considerable number of Canadian citizens, who have been freely permitted to cross the border daily to employment under permits issued to them by the Department of Labor, are unable to comply with the terms of the Order because they were born abroad, and cannot secure immigration visas chargeable to the quotas of their countries of birth by December 1st. I understand that there are registered at the various United States Consulates at border points, the names of some three thousand individuals who have been in the habit of crossing the border to employment, and who have applied without success for the issue of quota immigration visas. These three thousand individuals are therefore in the most imminent danger of being deprived of their means of livelihood.
I therefore venture to suggest that the time has come when the assurances made in the second of the sentences which are quoted above from your note, should be put into effect. I need not emphasize the desirability of reaching a rapid decision, nor the difficulties which will be incurred at the points principally affected, if no relief is afforded before December 1st. The view of His Majesty's Government in Canada, as expressed to you in my note of June 8th, remains unchanged. It sincerely hopes that you may find it possible to inform me immediately that the effects of the Order have been so modified as to permit at least those who have applied for immigration visas without being able to secure them, to continue to cross the border without difficulty.
You will doubtless note that I am now only requesting relief for those who have taken all steps in their power to comply with the terms of the Order. In your note of May 28th. you stated that the compulsory relinquishment by such persons of their employment in the United States, which they may have enjoyed for a number of years, would constitute a hardship which you sincerely regretted. I have every confidence that you will take all steps to avoid the infliction of this hardship, and to arrive at an equitable solution of this problem. I have [etc.]
The Secretary of State to the Canadian Minister (Massey)
WASHINGTON, December 9, 1927. Sir: I have the honor to refer to your note No. 281 of November 26, 1927, and to recent conferences held with you at the Department upon the subject of relief for those residents of Canada crossing the border daily for employment in the United States who have applied for quota immigration visas but who have been unable to obtain them prior to December 1, 1927, the time limit specified in General Order No. 86 of the Department of Labor within which they were to present such visas. As
you have already been informed, it has been found possible to grant a substantial measure of relief to the aliens in question by arranging that those who have gone as far as they could in order to comply with the terms of General Order No. 86, by registering as applicants for visas at the American Consulates on the border prior to December 1, 1927, shall have priority status as of the date when they were accorded the border-crossing privilege. It is believed that they will thus be able to obtain their visas and to satisfy the requirements of the American immigration laws as fast as their examination can take place by the immigration authorities on the American side of the border, they continuing meanwhile to enjoy their border-crossing privileges. This relief is afforded in an effort to remedy any injustice that may have been suffered by this class of quota aliens due to the probability that they understood prior to the promulgation of General Order No. 86, that they had complied with American law when they had applied for and obtained border-crossing permits and that it was not necessary for them to apply also for immigration visas.
The Departments of State and Labor believe that the situation which was created by General Order No. 86 has, as a whole, largely disappeared, so many adjustments in individual cases having been made under the terms of the Order during the six months' period afforded for that purpose which ended November 30, 1927. The change made in the priority status of quota commuters who have been unable to obtain visas, although having registered as visa appli
cants prior to December 1, 1927, will, it is believed, afford all needed relief in those cases. Commuters born in Canada, on the other hand, may obtain non-quota visas upon application at a consulate and satisfying the consul as to their birth in Canada and their admissibility to this country under its immigration laws. Accept [etc.]
For the Secretary of State:
WILBUR J. CARR
DISINCLINATION OF THE CANADIAN GOVERNMENT TO AUTHORIZE THE DISCONTINUANCE OF SEINE FISHING IN MISSISQUOI BAY
The Secretary of State to the British Ambassador (Howard)
WASHINGTON, April 13, 1926. EXCELLENCY: I have the honor to invite your attention to the fact that pike-perch in Lake Champlain, which annually migrate to the Canadian waters of Missisquoi Bay at the northern end of the Lake for the purpose of spawning, are being taken with seines under licenses issued by the Canadian authorities. The spawning season usually lasts from about March first to April fifteenth and it is understood that the licenses are issued for this period, although it has been reported that individuals continue illegally to fish with seines until well along into the month of May. During this time when the fish are passing into the Canadian waters they are taken in very large quantities without having had an opportunity to spawn, thus serving to destroy in large measure the future supply of this valuable food fish.
The question of conserving the pike-perch fisheries in Lake Champlain was discussed by the American-Canadian Fisheries Conference held in 1918.30 The report of this Conference, signed by the Commissioners for the United States and the Commissioners for the Dominion of Canada at Lake Champlain, New York, September 6, 1918,31 contained the following statement with reference to the protection of the fisheries of Lake Champlain:
“At the Boston hearings representatives from the States of New York and Vermont appeared to urge better protection of the fisheries in Missisquoi Bay, the Canadian portion of Lake Champlain. This matter had received preliminary consideration by the conference during its sittings in Washington, D. C.
See American-Canadian Fisheries Conference, Hearings at Washington, D. C., January 21-25; Boston, Mass., January 31, February 1; Gloucester, Mass., February 2; St. John, N. B., February 5-6, 1918 (Washington, Government Printing Office, 1918).
Foreign Relations, 1918, p. 439.
258346-42-vol. 1- -38
"It was explained that for some years past these two States, with the cooperation and assistance of the Federal Government, were endeavoring to make Lake Champlain a favorite tourist resort, as, owing to its character, it could not support any extensive commercial fishing. To this end both States were prohibiting all net fishing, but the most important spawning grounds for pike-perch, the most valuable fish in the lake, are in the portion thereof that is in Canadian territory, and there each spring, when the fish crowd into these waters to spawn, they are caught with seines. Thus the good effects of the work of the two States were being largely nullified.
"It was also explained that the United States Bureau of Fisheries operates a pike-perch hatchery on the lake and that it was prepared to enlarge the hatchery and increase its work if the net fishing were stopped.
“While this matter was not explicitly referred to the conference for consideration, it was one of which it could take cognizance. It was, therefore, 'left with the Canadian delegation for such action as they felt justified in taking.
"Following the return of the Canadian section to Ottawa, after hearings at St. John, it laid the facts before the Canadian Government, and recommended that all net fishing in Missisquoi Bay should be stopped. This recommendation was approved, and the fishery regulations for the Province of Quebec were amended accordingly by Order in Council of February 18, 1918.” (Page 37)
The amendment, prohibiting net fishing in Missisquoi Bay and in the Canadian waters of Lake Champlain, was later incorporated in an Order in Council of October 22, 1921, which in turn was rescinded by a subsequent Order in Council, dated March 1, 1922.
Since the promulgation of the Order in Council of March 1, 1922, it appears that net fishing has been authorized in Missisquoi Bay under licenses issued by Canadian authorities, and that at the present time fish are being gathered in by seines night and day.
The harmful effect which this seining is having upon the Lake Champlain Fishery is apparent.
I have the honor, therefore, to express the hope that you will present the matter to the Government of Canada and ascertain whether that Government would be willing to cooperate with this Government in conserving this fishery by prohibiting net fishing in the Canadian waters during the spawning season. If the prohibition inaugurated by the Order in Council of February 18, 1918, were reestablished by the Canadian authorities, it would be a source of gratitude to the United States and particularly to the people living in the vicinity of Lake Champlain, who feel greatly aggrieved at the existing practice. It is suggested that the furtherance of good will which discontinuance of the seining would occasion would no doubt outweigh the economic loss to individuals who have profited from the seining operations. Since this Government understands that the operations complained of are now being vigorously prosecuted, it is hopeful that the Canadian authorities may see their way clear to take immediate action in the premises. I shall appreciate it if you will inform me as soon as feasible as to the disposition of the Canadian Government in this matter. Accept [etc.]
FRANK B. KELLOGG
The British Ambassador (Howard) to the Secretary of State No. 393
WASHINGTON, June 7, 1926. Sir: With reference to your note No. 711.428/1020 of April 13th last regarding the pike-perch fisheries in Lake Champlain, I have the honour to inform you at the request of the Government of Canada, that enquiries made through the Department of the Province of Quebec which administers fisheries in that area, indicate that while some illegal fishing was attempted in April, the seines and other apparatus were immediately seized and an official of the Department, who has since made a thorough investigation, has reported that conditions are now entirely satisfactory.
As set forth in your note under reference, the question of prohibiting seining in the Missisquoi Bay was considered by the CanadianAmerican Fisheries Conference of 1918, and in anticipation of the different questions that had been referred by the two Governments to the Conference being settled by the acceptance of its report by both Governments, a regulation was adopted by Order in Council of February 18th, 1918, prohibiting fishing by means of nets of any kind in Missisquoi Bay. This regulation was maintained in the face of growing objection to it until March 1st, 1922, up to which time the recommendations of the Conference, though they had been approved by the Canadian Government, had not been approved by that of the United States and there was no immediate indication that they would be.
Missisquoi Bay is in the Province of Quebec, where the fisheries are being administered by the Provincial authorities, which consequently issue any licenses which authorize fishing there. The statement in your note abovementioned that it has been reported that individuals continue to fish in the Bay during the close season is being communicated to the Provincial authorities for proper attention.
It will be recalled that the Treaty of 1908 for the regulation of the fisheries in boundary waters 82 covered not only Missisquoi Bay, but other waters as well. The regulations adopted by the Commission
* Foreign Relations, 1908, p. 379.