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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - April 20, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta Hospitals, rail service hit as floods sweep Pram By THE CANADIAN PRESS Residents of flooded communities in the Prairie provinces worked Friday to combat overflowing rivers and creeks while those in threatened areas fought equally hard with sandbags and other equipment. Moose Jaw was the heaviest hit and officials maintained a watchful eye on the Moose Jaw River which was expected to deliver peak flows today or Sunday. Mayor Herb Taylor ordered an emergency hospital unit set up on a stand-by basis in case rising flood waters close Union Hospital Hospitals were a major area of concern for other communities as well. In Vegreville, Alta., about 50 miles east of Edmonton, patients not requiring constant medical care were released from the 170-bed hospital complex. In Carman, Man., 50 miles southwest of Winnipeg, flood fighters hoped to reduce de- struction from a high-water crest on the Boyne River ex- pected today. Meanwhile, 20 patients were evacuated from the town's hospital Friday night when basement flooding affected heating and electrical equipment. They were taken to hospitals in Winkler and Morden about ?.0 miles south. Floods affected rail service in the three provinces, with CP Rail announcing Friday that grain shipments have been curtailed and movement to Thunder Bay may end early next week if high water levels continue. Several bridges and track sections are out of service in southern Manitoba and Sas- katchewan, including the grainrich LaRievier subdivision south of Winnipeg where a grain train is locked in by rising waters. CP Rail's two prime grain branch lines north of Winnipeg, to Arborg and Riverton, were cut by washouts. In Alberta, the Northern Al- berta Railway shut down its freight and passenger service Friday because of washouts on almost all lines A Canadian National Rail- ways spokesman said restora- tion of transcontinental service might be delayed due to unstable ground near a section that washed out Wednesday. The section of track, 50 miles west of Edmonton, was restored Thursday but CNR engineers Friday were examining the nearby ground, described as a "sink hole" Across the Prairies, sandbags were pressed into use to stave off flood damage. Volunteers spent hours filling the bags, which were used as quickly as they were made. About 480 homes in Moose Jaw and their occupants had been evacuated by Friday night Officials were optimistic that the extent of flooding and damage in most centres would not equal or approach that of Moose Jaw. However, Lumsden, Sask., 20 miles north of Regina, was an exception. Premier Allan Blakeney said there is a "better than even chance" that the crest of the Qu'Appelle River will be higher than the dikes can contain In that case, most of the with a population of have to be evacuated, EMO official Jim Eaton said. At Arborg, Man diking ef- forts constitute a desperate effort to stave off total evacuation of the community of 800. Construction started Friday on a mile-long earth- filled dike after it became apparent that sandbagging would not stem the waters which began flowing into the town earlier that day. In Alberta, Vegreville is in the most vulnerable position, with the Vermilion River ex- pected to peak by Sunday. River levels were slowly rising at Two Hills, further downstream Gas debate EDMONTON (CP) Provincial Treasurer Gordon Miniely promised Friday that Alberta's gasoline tax will eventually be debated in the legislature SMH and heard About town Doris Michaelis phoning from Moscow to assure her daughter in Milk River she was .having a good time Jim McLaughlin's car in for a spring tune-up and the mechanic putting his brand new license stickers on the wrong car. Flood-stricken Moose Jaw a city street sinks slowly (left) in flood waters as volunteers rush, (right) to .fill sand bags to protect Union Hospital from the swollen Moose Jaw River. The letHbridge Herald VOL. LXVII 108 LETHBRIDGE, ALBERTA, SATURDAY, APRIL 20, 1974 15 Cents 72 Pages Jail inmate work proposal being studied By AL SCARTH Herald Legislature Bureau EDMONTON Inmates of provincial jails may be asked to work in Southern Alberta sugar beet fields to make up a serious labor shortage. Solicitor General Helen Hunley said Friday her department is carrying out a feasibility study of the proposal from Doug Miller (SC Taber Her department is studying various means to get inmates into industry and industry into the correctional institutions "Meaningful work is extremely Miss Hunley told the legislature. In her discussions with Mr. Miller, she said she expected that inmates would receive the going wage and then pay board. "This was an opportunity to bring to the minister's attention the serious situation of row-cropping in the Mr. Miller said of his proposal in an interview. "We need literally hundreds of people to help. The work really needs conscientious people. With a guard on them, too, he would be like a supervisor." But the MLA said inmates "would have to be willing of course" to do the work of thinning the fields. He said contract wages amounted to to an acre which is what they would be paid. "We've had it before and it was successful during the war with prisoners of war. There were prisoners from the Lethbridge Jail after the war as he said At least one beet growers' association, for Barnwell, endorses the proposal, Mr Miller said. In her correspondence with the MLA, Miss'Hunely said "you may be sure this is one area I'll be considering." She said arrangements would have to be worked out with both the industry and correctional institutes Mr Miller is also plugging to have welfare recipients join the ranks of beet workers. Miss Hunely envisages an overall scheme for provincial institutions which would turn them into a form of manpower centres. Inmates would work at jobs in private industry to which they could go upon their release Another part of the program might see industries established in the jails themselves. Posties in national strike Canada Packers denies lock-out Canada Packers Ltd. denied Friday it had locked out workers m two Alberta packing plants, calling the plant closures "layoffs." The company said in a prepared statement the Lethbridge and Red Deer plants had been shut down, and the Calgary plant was in the process of closing, because of slowdowns and work stoppages. It said workers were given "notice of layoff" when the company no longer had confidence it could produce and deliver products required by customers. Workers could return if normal production was assured "If they want to come back and give us normal production, we'll open the plant right Ross Held, Lethbridge plant manager, told The Herald. Negotiations were still going on, he said. Rene Masse, chief steward of the Canada Packers unit of Local 740 of the Canadian Food and Allied Workers said the 150. Lethbndge employees were locked out. There were small slowdowns, he said. "We feel the company is not trying to negotiate in good said Mr. Masse. Officials of the Swift Canadian Co. Ltd. and Canadian Dressed Meats Ltd., a subsidiary of Burns Foods Ltd. said their plants are operating normally Negotiations between Canada Packers and the CAFW began Jan. 23 in Toronto. OTTAWA (CP) Inside postal workers were called out on a national strike Friday night and their union leaders said they will seek support of letter carriers to close down postal service completely. The decision, announced by Joe Davidson, president of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) after negotiations with Postmaster- General Andre Ouellet broke off, gives sanction of the union leadership to wildcat walkouts that began more than a week ago Union officials estimated Friday that 90 per cent of the inside postal workers already had walked out in protest against plans for automated letter sorting. Roger Decarie, president of Gov't aids rural schools EDMONTON (CP) The provincial government will make up to a year available in grants to help preserve small, rural schools in Alberta hit by declining enrolment and rising costs. Education Minister Lou Hyndman told the legislature Friday the grant program is designed for schools in districts, divisions or counties with fewer than pupils that have an average of 10 or fewer students per grade. The government will give for each student in schools where there is an average of fewer than five students per grade. The government will pay for each student where there is an average of from five to 10 students per grade Under the program, to begin this September, the money will be paid to school boards. Communities with small schools eligible for the grants will be informed that boards have received the money. Mr. Hyndman said the program will reduce the need for rural school decentralization and help small communities where residents feel strongly that the small school is an integral part of community life. the letter carriers' union, said members of his organization will not cross inside'workers' picket lines. Mr Davidson said talks .broke off after CUPW negotiators concluded "with a certain amount of disappointment and regret" that the post office and treasury board do not intend to settle the dispute to the union's satisfaction. Mr Ouellet said he will call for a meeting Monday of a manpower committee, which he said is the only body legally entitled to discuss job classi- fication during the term of the contract currently in force. Mr Ouellet branded the strike illegal and said: "The union leaders have to realize that they won't get anything by an illegal strike They can't blackmail the government." He said he hopes the depart- ment will not have to force employees back to work through an act of Parliament. Mr. Davidson was asked about the consequences for union leaders if they were breaking the law in calling for the strike. "I don't know and I don't care." he said. The Canadian Chamber of Commerce called on Mr Ouellet in a telegram to "take immediate steps" to end the walkouts. The 39 members of the Lethbridge local of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers will meet Sunday to decide what action they will take following postal worker strikes in other parts of the country. But. Doug Harrold, CUPW local president, said today walkouts across the country have left his members sorting local mail only. Israel feels free to attack Syria THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Israeli Defence Minister Moshe Dayan says Israel is free to attack Syria without restraint following the first dogfights over the Golan Heights since the October Middle East war. Dayan appeared on state television Friday warning that United States State Secretary Henry Kissinger "may find a battlefield here instead of a negotiating table" when he ar- rives later this month in hopes of working out a troop-dis- engagement plan. As Syrian and Israeli jets battled Friday, ground fighting increased on the Golan. Syria said seven Israeli jets were shot down in dogfights over Mount Hermon and anti- aircraft guns knocked out 10 others Israel said it downed two Syrian planes and lost two of its own, the first Israeli air losses since the October war. 'Human error' caused crash Air pact signed PEKING (Reuter) China and Japan signed- today a civil-aviation agreement providing for direct flights between the two countries The .signing concluded a year of negotiations and forged a new link between the two Asian neighbors. The agreement also severely strained relations between Japan and Taiwan ST. LOUIS. Mo (Reuter) The president of the McDonnell-Douglas Aircraft Corp, maker of the DC-10 jumbo jetliner which crashed near Paris killing 346 persons last month, said Friday human error caused the disaster. Sanford McDonnell, addressing his company's annual meeting, blamed the crash, the world's worst air disaster, on a baggage handler at Orly airport who he said closed the rear cargo door improperly. An international investigation in Paris concluded that a faulty rear door caused the Turkish- owned airliner to crash. McDonnell said that after the near-crash of a DC-10 over Windsor, Ont., in June, 1972, when the rear cargo door fell off shortly after takeoff from Detroit, the company acted promptly to recommend modifications of the cargo doors on DC-lOs then in service He admitted that the modi- fications apparently were not made on the Turkish airliner which crashed near Paris, al- though the company's records show they had been carried out. At a news conference later, he said the 'baggage handler who shut the cargo door of the airliner did not have adequate training and was unable to read the instructions printed in English for latching and locking the door The Israeli high command said today that its planes hit a Syrian radar station at Zebe- dam, 17 miles northwest of Damascus, during Friday's fighting. Syrian officials said as many as 50 Israeli fighters and fighter-bombers were involved in the action Friday, but they did not say how many Syrian planes saw action over the 300-mile enclave Israel captured in the October war. It was the second straight day of Syrian air attacks over the territory. Witnesses said an Israeli Phantom jet crashed in Leba- nese territory in the Bekaa Valley. The Syrian military command later reported one of its Israeli pilots died. The other was reported seriously injured. Witnesses also reported seeing a Syrian MiG-21 crash in Lebanon near Louezeh. The Israeli command said Syrian planes bombed and strafed Israeli positions in the southern Golan sector while Israeli fighters hit Syrian positions on Mount Hermon on the Lebanese-Syrian border Inside ft? {n'p 'Excus'e me, dear. I've Just found this tape... measure.' Classified.....26-31 Comics........24 Comment.......4, 5 District.......... 15 Family ......33-36 Local News___ 13, 14 Markets 25, 38 Religion.........6-9 Sports 21-23 ill Theatres..........17 TV............16 S Weather........... 3 LOW TONIGHT 35, S HIGH SUN. 60; MAINLY SUNNY vi Drury sensitive to public servants' plight Herald Ottawa Bureau OTTAWA The government is going to have to do something about public service wages and salaries to offset inflation, says Treasury Board President Charles M. Drury In a statement to FP Publications, carefully choosing his words, he put it this way: "It is quite clear that three- year public service contracts entered into some time ago under the then existing economic circumstances, particularly in relation to future wage and salary increases, do not fit the existing circumstances, so consideration is being given as to how best to meet this new situation." What precise action the gov- ernment intends taking. Mr Drury declined to say. Will it involve writing an "escalation clause" into new contracts, as urged Friday in the Commons by Grenville- Carleton Conservative MP Walter Baker? Or, as he suggested later in the corridors of the House, will it go as far as inserting cost-of-hving done by some industries such as Algoma Steel, International Nickel and the Steel Company of into existing contracts? Mr. Drury isn't saying, but he did say in the later, outside the House hardened it in his something must be done for the public service to help the nearly on the government payroll, cope with the economic ravages of inflation. Mr. Baker had raised the is- sue during the Daily Question Period in the Commons against what he said was the background of public service labor strike of the St. Lawrence pilots, the paralysis of the postal service, the shutting down of major airports by illegally striking fire-fighters and the impending walkout of the air traffic controllers This "curtailment of essential as he saw it, was deeply injurious of the public interest and the respect of the courts and the law. Some of the strikers have been ignoring court injunctions and the government has taken no counter-action. It was all "symptomatic of the lack of Treasury Board re- sponse to inflation in terms of collective Mr. Baker told the House in asking Mr. Drury what, if anything, the government intended doing about it. There were "no easy pan- the Treasury Board President countered while voicing hope of "an intelligent and forceful approach" to this and related inflation problems ;