Lethbridge Herald (Newspaper) - June 7, 1971, Lethbridge, Alberta
Monday, June 7, 1971 - THI UTHMIDOI HRAID - ff Youth should "stand up and be counted" First Rotary Youth Forum assigned ^passing grade" Questions and answers By JIM WILSON Staff Writer About ISO persons of various ages and occupations attended the Downtown Rotary Club's first Youth Forum Sunday night, and at its conclusion assigned it a passing grade. Some of the young people present were critical because the panel of resource persons a few times dodged or were unable to answer questions, but they agreed a follow-up forum would be valuable. It abo seemed evident that many questions simply could not be fully answered be- cause, as in the case with the new Alberta Age of Majority Act setting legal age at 18 years, there has not been time to assess all of its ramifications. Young people also criticised some of the panelits as being far too conservative, providing statements or answers designed to avoid, rather than face any social confrontation. Panelists included moderator John Gogo, manager of Investors Syndicate in Leth-bridge; Dick Williams, a city lawyer; Dr. Harold Prokopi-ahyn, a physician; Don Hig- glns, a Mutual life Assurance agent; and B. W. K. Elliott, pastor of Southmin-ster Church. Each gave a five to 10 minute introductory speech. In a future forum, those present agreed with a comment from Mr. Gogo that the panel should include some youth representatives. The Rotary Club will also be willing to work toward development of a handbook answering questions of concern to Lethbridge young people in areas of law, medicine and others, Mr. Gogo said. What the panelists said on their own . . . JOHN GOGO The young, the old and the "establishment" of a community seem never to get together in dialogue, "so they remain ignorant of each other and never manage to solve their problems." The result, said John Gogo, speaking at the first Rotary Club Youth Forum Sunday night, is that "misunderstandings fight with misunderstandings." He said times and attitudes are changing increasingly rapidly, and within the past 10 years most aspects of society have undergone at least some revision. The same people who some years ago were opposed to abortion, or to widespread use of credit, are among their strongest proponents today. "Ten years ago most parents became upset when their kids became 18 years old because they were leaving the nest. Others were concerned because they lost the family allowance then. "Today kids reaching the same age can go out and choose or even become the Canadian prime minister," Mr. Gogo said. 'Things do change." He said it was time to stop using a sort of double standard in dealing with different age groups: "I don't see any difference between a kid getting hopped up on dope and his father getting boozed up on alcohol. "They're both reactions to the same problems." DICK WILLIAMS Dick Williams, a city lawyer said there were many aspects of a young person's life which have been changed with the new Age of Majority Act in Alberta. These include voting and liquor privileges, ability to run for municipal or provincial governmental office, qualification to serve on a jury, ability to sign and execute wills, responsibility for all medical service, qualification to join a variety of groups previously limited legally to 21 years of age or older. He said it should be remem- Ballots out for council of chamber Ballots have been distributed for election of a 30-member council of the Lethbridge Chamber of Commerce. Ballots must be returned by June 10. There are 40 candidates. Candidates are: Bruce Alger, Cliff Black, Doug Clark, Bill Clarke Carse Goa, Dean Lien, Reed Ainscougb, Stan Worboys, Ralph Effler, Ira Flaa, Myrtle Short, Steve Kotoh; Dr. 0. P. Larson, Dr. Russell Leskhv, Kaz SMgehiro, Robert Robinson, John Boras, Bert Ec-cles, Louis Kohn, Earl Dawson, Fred Quittenbaum, Howard Ellison, Sam Lurie, Al McFadden, Bill Olafson, Keith Lees, Jim Dunstan, Jim Ayer, Art Watson, Jack limes; George Mihalik, I. W. Swan-son, Paul Ruznak, Gordon Patterson, J. D. Long, Francis Hlga, Freda Walton, W. S. Jrnnieson, Hal Brown, Dale Martin. Stamp sales The sales of postage stamps, postage meter settings and cash receipts for mail posted for the month of May 1971 was $53,140 compared to $50,264 for the same month last year. bered that these were true only insofar as they involved Alberta: many federal statutes still refer to the legal age as either 21 or 1�, depending on what they are. In the Criminal Code of Canada, a person 16 years of age or older is considered an adult and can be tried in adult court for criminal offenders. Mr. Williams said there is pending federal legislation changing the Juvenile Delinquency Act to a Youth Offenders Act. The new act would follow the philosophy that a young person found guilty of an offence should be dealt with as "a misguided youth needing help," he said, instead of as a "juvenile delinquent." The age of majority under the new act would be set by each individual province, and Mr. Williams said there is a strong move to have this set at 18 throughout Canada, rather than 16 as it now is in the Criminal Code. "I hope all of our young people win find out more about the Youth Offenders Act and teH their federal Member of Parliament (Deans Gundlock in Lethbridge) what they think about it" "Where the gap between the laws and the wishes of society are too great, you have disrespect for the laws developing," Mr. Williams said. "Young people can now stand up and be counted, and are able to change some of the laws which they find most disagreeable. Remember, it is the legislature which makes the laws; the police only enforce them and the courts only interpret them." DR. HAROLD PROKOPISHYN There are more than 200 million marijuana users in the world according to a world Health Organization report, but at the same time medical research is still uncertain as to the health aspects of the drug's use, says Lethbridge physician Dr. Harold Prokopisbyn. Dr. Prokopisbyn also provided other statistics to the Rotary Youth Forum Sunday. He said that in Montreal last year there were about 1,000 cases per month of syphilis and gonorrhea, many of which show high resistance to penicilin. He said it was easily spread, but difficult to detect or avoid: "You have to have a bug and you have to have two partners. The only way to avoid it is to abstain from sex completely." There were 11,200 therapeutic abortions performed in Canadian hospitals last year, a "fair "increase over 1969, the doctor said. DON BIGGINS An awareness of the various terms and results of credit use are important to the young person entering his first credit or loan transaction, says insurance agent Don Biggins. For example, the difference between a loan or investment at simpto interest and at compound Interest can be substantial even in the short run. He st'id a more extreme example would stow what be meant One cent invested in the year 3340 B.C. at five per cent simple interest would be worth $2.49 today. One cent invested in 3340 B.C. at five per cent compound interest (meaning that interest is charged on interest) today would be worth $1, 329, 212. 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000,000, 000,000,000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000. "Be careful about interest rates," Mr. Higgins said. He said some form of investment, be it insurance or other was important to everyone. "More than one in every two persons of age 25 today will be dependent on someone else on their retirement," he said, adding that most social security plans were designed to provide only minimal coverage. "The only difference between an old man and an elderly gentleman is his money." He said young people should "guard carefully" their credit rating, but at the same time should not expect to automatically be able to borrow money just because they turned 18. , "Many people who are 35 -or older can't borrow money either - it depends on an assessment of your ability to repay the loan." Mr. Higgins said young people should be aware of the Bankruptcy Act, designed to give a fresh start to persons who get too deeply in debt to ever get out ("but once you declare bankruptcy you'll find difficulty in getting credit or some jobs, or getting bonded"). Another important statute is the Orderly Payment of Debts Act, which is a form of assistance designed to help people pay their way out of debt. It is administered through the local sheriffs office, and simply shares the person's salary out among himself and his (realtors. Mr. Higgins said when borrowing money from finance companies or banks to take close notice of bow much money it costs to borrow the money: $100 borrowed for one year with total payments of $108 means the loan cost about 10.75 per cent interest, not six per cent as it appears. R. W. K. ELLIOTT Today's youth are the "most scared, most affluent, most honest and most intelligent" generation which ever lived on the earth, Reverend R. W. K. Elliott told the Youth Forum audience Sunday. Including himself m the definition "young," Rev. Elliott said "We're running from something, but we don't really know what: 75 per cent of the earth today is naming for its life, but we're all naming for the fuc of it and we don't know why." And: "This is the most honest generation of young people, and it is intelligent above anything that ever existed. "But it is the most conformist, too - all someone has to say in Paris is to wear not pants, and all' the women do." He said young people today class the church as perhaps the last thing they will deal with: "It's classed with the law, the schools and with society itself as being out of date. "And largely, I'd say you're right about that - the church hasn't kept up with the times." Rev. Elliott said that tunes have changed drastically in the past 20 years, and new way of life is now the JO�iC8l COB* "The world of the work ethic is over, and the world you are moving into is one of leisure, the leisure that only kings could enjoy in another time. "Help us to move into that world, which is completely foreign to us," he said. The following are some of the questions and answers discussed during the three-hour Rotary Youth Forum: What are a person's rights when he or she is stopped for questioning by the police? Williams: "You don't have to go with them to the police station unless they charge you with something and arrest you. Often a person" will go along with the police, in order to explain the situation and clear it up. But you can use your discretion. "There is nothing wrong with refusing to answer a policeman's questions unless be charges you." There is no such charge as "suspicion of doing something" - the law requires an actual charge to be made - ACTUALLY doing something. This includes no charge of "suspicion of possession of drugs," but at the same time the police have wide powers under the Narcotics Control Act when it comes to drugs, What powers of search do the police have in cases where drugs may be Involved? Williams: "No warrant is required for a police search if they act under the Narcotics Control Act." Section 10-1 of the act says a police officer may, if he "reasonably believes" narcotics (including marijuana) are on the premises, use whatever force is necessary to enter and search a home. The officer may search individuals, break down walls and break into locked containers according to the act, and confiscate any suspected drugs. Similar legislation permits the police to search a car if they suspect it may be carrying drugs. The stipulation of "reasonable belief' remains undefined, and Mr. Williams said "many policemen say they can tell if there is marijuana nearby just by smelling for it." Is there any way. to tell if a person has venereal disease before yon have intercourse? . Prokopisbyn: There is no way to tell, since tests must be made and case histories studied before VD can be confirmed. The individual himself or herself would likely be the first to suspect infection. What can a person who suspects having caught VD do? Prokopishyn: Go to the family physician or other doctor, and "you will immediately be tested." Another place a person can go is to the public health clinic at 9th Ave. and 18th St. S., where free testing will also be done. Dr. Prokopisbyn said the records kept are confidential, even in the cases of 16 to 18-year-olds, who are legally juveniles. Williams: It is not legally necessary for a doctor to inform anyone including the person's parents that he or she has contracted or b e e n treated for VD. However, both men said, some doctors may personally believe they should tell parents, so they suggested asking the doctor first. Are more young people or less attending church today Elliott: "A church doesn't necessarily mean a building: a church is you, or me, wherever we are. Generally young people today have a closer relationship to the real meaning of the church than they have had in past years. "As for turning to the institution called the church, they are not: there are, for example, less children going to Sunday School now than there were 20 years ago. "Older people, however, are standing by the tradition called the church and attending regularly." Can a doctor legally prescribe birth control pills to a juvenile? Prokopishyn: The Canadian Medical Association has a legal opinion which says that for a female under 18 years of age the doctor could be charged under the Juvenile Delinquency Act with contributing to the girl's delinquency. The fact that her parents had given their permission would still not alter the doctor's liability, but would reduce the possibility of charges being laid. For a female over 18 years of age it would be legal. What are the legalities involved in getting an abortion? Prokopishyn: The woman should make contact with a family or other doctor, who will refer her directly to the Lethbridge abortion panel. The panel consists of three doctors, at least two of whom must agree that the abortion should proceed. The doctors are chosen at random by the hospital, and "it is usually difficult to find enough doctors to sit on the pane 1," Dr. Prokopyshyn said. The Municipal Hospital in Lethbridge is the only one which permits abortions: St. Michael's General Hospital will not Clinically, an abortion is relatively straightforward up to the end of the third month of pregnancy; after that it requires a more serious operation. Is abortion murder? Williams: "Under the Criminal Code of Canada, no it is not." Elliott: "No, abortion is not murder." If a person Is admitted to hospital for emergency treatment for an overdose of drugs, must police or parents be notified? Prokopyshyn: "The information we get goes on hospital charts and into hospital records and stays there. The hospital authorities are not required to report the matter to police. "Being under the influence of drugs is not an offence, so doctors and hospital personnel have no legal right to report the patient's hospitalization." However, police are sometimes notified both in an attempt to find out what kind of drug was used and at times (said many young people at the forum) because the doctors believe they have a moral duty to tell police. If police asked the patient either in or outside of the hospital about the overdose, the person would be completely justified in refusing to say one word. Can a teacher or school principal legally use the strap on a student? Williams: School authorities are entitled to use a certain amount of force to keep school discipline; how much force is reasonable is not defined, but strapping is permitted. Can you as a solicitor tell me what my civil rights are -!s it possible to define a person's civil rights in Canada? Williams: "No." What happens when a person applies for credit? Higgins: An inspection check is made, where credit (or life insurance) investigators interview the person's neighbors, business associates and other contacts. The only way to find out what your credit rating is after such a check is to ask a business to run a "Dunn and Bradstreet" on you, which costs about $2.50. The credit bureau will not and does not have to tell you personally what your rating is. If a student with a government loan cannot find a job, what can he do? Higgins: If the student expresses bis "good faith" to the bank manager, be win usually find the bank entirely co-operative about making some sort of arrangements. If you feel you are being harassed by police, what can you do? Williams: You can complain formally to the police (in writing) or you can go to your solicitor. How can a person get legal aid (city lawyers working for free)? Williams: Go to the Court House and ask the receptionist to refer you to the right office. $1,198,000 taxes paid Tax payments at city hall for the week ending June 3 amounted to $115,500, bringing the total so far this year to $1,-198,000. The total is almost 16 per cent of the 1971 estimated levy1 Of $7,495,000. Payments for the same week last year were somewhat higher - $166,500 - but the total to June 3 in 1970 was only $1,007,-000 or 14.5 per cent of last year's $6,935,000 levy. Freshly minted. du MAURIER MENTHOL KING SIZE du Maurier Menthol-fresh new taste.