T HE C OMPANY OF Y OUNG C ANADIANS Presented by:Shannon Tang, Alice Maryniuk, & Sophia Koo
TABLE OF CONTENTS Significant People of the CYC History of the Company of Young Canadians The twelve aims and principles The CYC Projects Mounting Problems Beginning of the End The Compagnie de Jeunesse Canadien (CJC) References
S IGNIFICANT P EOPLE OF THE CYC Arthur Pape Doug Ward Rick Salter
A RTHUR PAPE Member of Student Union for Peace Action (SUPA) Brought the CYC credibility with activist youth Member of the governing council of CYC Aware of the lack of leadership among the youth Created the summer project of 1967 focusing on the Maritimes, Toronto, and Quebec Found that the CYC should provide each project with on the spot research component Proposed a research and training centre.
D OUG WARD Executive of the Canadian Union of Students Also member of governing council of CYC
R ICK S ALTER Director of Recruitment Ontario Regional Director Found that recruiting procedures determine whether volunteers were the sort who wanted to do good work or were interested in social change.
T HE C OMPANY OF Y OUNG C ANADIANS The Company of Young Canadians was produced by an Act of Parliament in 1966 with the support of all Political Parties in the House of Commons. They were in charge to be a revolutionary body. The first political happening of its kind in the world.
T HE CYC A CT (B ILL C-174) The Act was passed on June 28, 1966. The Act read: "The objects of the Company are to support, encourage and develop programs for social, economic and community development in Canada . . . through voluntary service." This legislation made the CYC an independent Crown Corporation.
S TRUCTURE OF THE CYC When the company was first launched in 1966, it had 50 volunteers. In 1968, the company had reached its peak with 225 volunteers but this figure declined in 1970. Prior to October 1969, the CYC was governed by an Interim or Provisional Council under the leadership of the government. In December 1969, the federal government amended the CYC Act and formed a new council of 9 members who were all appointed by the federal government. This prohibited the membership of volunteers on the council.
E XECUTIVE D IRECTORS OF T HE CYC April 1966: Bill McWhinney (resigned after the Antigonish training camp). September 1966: Alan Clarke. June 1968: Stewart Goodings. December 1969: Claude Vidal.
C REATION OF THE CYC During the Pearson regime, the idea of a youth corps was inspired by John F. Kennedy’s Peace Corps. The Company of Young Canadians Act permitted Canadian youth to perform worthwhile volunteer work Each month, volunteers received living allowances of about $185 to $225, as well as an additional $50 a month after two years of satisfactory service.
T HE TWELVE AIMS AND PRINCIPLES : 1. Canadians are to volunteer their time and talents to engage in constructive social change at home and abroad. 2. Help people to bring positive change to their situations and engage in solving their own problems. 3. The volunteers will work and live among the groups and communities. 4. People have the responsibility to make decisions about their own lives. * * However, this method of organizing was perceived as a threat to existing governments since individuals were controlled by the government, corporations, or churches.
T HE TWELVE AIMS AND PRINCIPLES : 5. Volunteers will partner together with the people to produce a mutual learning experience to empower people towards action. 6. Volunteers will help people communicative their own problems and find their own solutions. 7. There will be no hesitation in seeking volunteers. 8. The Company council will support its volunteers, but will not share responsibilities of the issues the volunteers are involved with.
T HE TWELVE AIMS AND PRINCIPLES : 9. The volunteer is the main decision maker in the Company of Young Canadians. 10. The project should allow the volunteer to exercise freedom in deciding his/her own methods to take the initiative and be independent. 11. The Company will support projects which will deal with root issues regarding the causes of problems and not simply "bandage" a symptom. 12. Volunteers in the Company will choose their own assignments.
T HE CYC PROJECTS Antigonish, Nova Scotia Faust, Alberta Calgary, Alberta St. Jerome, Quebec Cape Breton
A NTIGONISH , N OVA S COTIA In June 26, 1966, 56 volunteers arrived at the hastily arranged sensitivity training session. This training session was supposed to teach volunteers how to be sensitive to other people’s needs and problems. “seven volunteers quit the course and sixteen needed psychiatric treatment by the time it ended.”
FAUST, A LBERTA In August 1966, Al Burger and Jeremy Ashton arrived in Faust, Alberta which is 200 miles north of Edmonton. They had a population of 800 people and the majority was Metis, who were on welfare. The whites were involved in fishing, logging and mink ranching. The CYC was invited in to help organize recreation for Fausts teenagers. They started a men‘s basketball team, and a Boy Scout troop, hoping to improve relations between whites and Métis, but in February, 1967, the Whites drove them out of town. The Métis circulated a petition asking them to come back and in July they responded. The white community drove them out again in April, and the project seemed doomed. Ashton and Burger admitted their mistakes, and tried to correct them. The main problem of the project: racial discrimination
C ALGARY, A LBERTA The CYC focused on the demands of the poor people of Calgary. The CYC taught the people how to speak out about rising rent prices (from $100 to $185 in 2 months) and they helped them to elect a new mayor. In turn, this led to the creation of the Welfare Rights Group in Calgary. Claude Vidal’s attempt at interfering with the Project was what led to the ‘down’ phase of the Calgary Project. Because the government disproved of the CYC’s autonomy, severe budget cuts were made to the company in 1968.
S T. J EROME , Q UEBEC In 1967, the objective was to transform an outdated industrial city into a technological centre with modern factories and plenty of jobs. English language lessons were also promoted since the majority of the population spoke French. This project had more structure compared to the early CYC projects. The CYC employed local volunteers who were already doing their work in the community. However, the employment rate did not improve. Individuals from outside of St. Jerome were coming and taking the jobs away from the locals. Vidal wished to shut down the project because there were only two volunteers. The volunteers did not tackle the real problems in the area since they mainly worked in recreation even though a large portion of the population was unemployed.
C APE B RETON It was a pure Community Development project. June 1968 volunteers were trained to believe that the poor and the disadvantaged have both the right and power to work out their own destiny. The project folded in 1970 when Vidal fired Bert Deveaux, the Community Development organizer.
M OUNTING P ROBLEMS According to Vidal, the Staff Co-ordinating Committee did not exist and were not covered under the CYC Act. Volunteers were concerned about protecting their own interests. Volunteers were disappointed that 1). Vidal had been appointed without consultation of volunteers and 2). There was no sign that elections for the permanent council will take place. The government wanted to cut funding for the CYC. Volunteers’ pay cheques arrived 2 to 6 weeks late.
O N T HIS D AY: O CTOBER 11, 1969 http://archives.cbc.ca/on_this_day/10/11/
B EGINNING OF THE END 1968 With the backing of Doug Ward, volunteers demanded the resignation of the Interim Advisory Council 1969 October 11 Mr. Lucien Saulnier (Chairman of the Executive Council of the City of Montreal) linked the CYC with acts of violence and terrorism in Montreal and called for Royal Commission inquiry
October 12 CYC volunteer, Bernard Montaigne said he was convicted in 1964 of possession of dynamite and given a two year sentence. He stated that he no longer believed in terrorism October 19 Prime Minister Trudeau promised that is any criminal element were found in the CYC theses elements would be removed from the organization
October 22 CYC officials stated that the Company will fully cooperate with the investigation and welcomes the opportunity to sort out ‘accusers’ October 24 A parliamentary committee started investigating the usefulness of the Company It included the committee examining the legislative framework, organization, and operations of the Company December 17 CYC was brought under close government control following a bill passed by the Commons
1970 January 13 The parliament inquiry into the activities of the CYC has stimulated community and youth interest in the CYC February 18 A bill was passed allowing the government to have sole authority to make appointments to the new council governing the Company This bill forever removed the possibility of volunteer participation
1971 August 26 The Report of the federal Committee on Youth submitted to the Secretary of State General Pelletier recommended the disbanding of the CYC **However, the recommendation was not accepted at the end!! October Newly appointed Executive Directors continued the legacy to have tight administrative control over the Company Guidelines that defined the limits of membership activities outside the Company had been clearly written into policy
1976 Trudeau government removed funding to cutback federal spending and to divert resources to other youth programs Several members struggled to keep the Company alive BUT………………………
1977 Nothing could be done to save the organization the allegations and others that followed lead to the eventual termination of the Company
L UCIEN S AULNIER ’ S A CCUSATIONS 1. “That several CYC members in Montreal had been convicted of terrorist activities following the first wave of FLQ bombings in 1963.” 2. “That a printing press belonging to the Company was used to print a leaflet urging students and workers to take part in a demonstration in front of City Hall organized by the FLP.” 3. “That police found firearms when they raided an office used by volunteers on a CYC slum project.” 4. “That CYC volunteers helped organize student strikes.” 5. “That ‘Communist propaganda’ literature, and leaflets including instructions on how to make things like Molotov cocktails, were found by police in a CYC office (Daly, 213).”
P ROBLEMS LEADING TO THE END Ian Hamilton (former company member) Spent considerable time studying problems that plagued the organization He suggested the Company’s close ties with the government significantly hindered its ability to appropriately represent youth
Margaret Daly (journalist for the Toronto Daily Star) She followed Hamilton by saying the complicated bureaucratic structure of the Company did more harm than good
“Liberal attempt to co-opt radical youth, [which] would be run by older people with only token youth representation, and would be concerned not with basic social change but with token social service.” -Margaret Daly
T HE C OMPAGNIE DE J EUNESSE C ANADIEN (CJC) Quebec branch of CYC was organized one year later than the rest of CYC This particular branch had important differences from the rest of CYC It was assigned to different projects CJC had its own staffing and construction
Major projects of CJC La Petite Bourgogne le centre Est de Montréal Joliette Association co-opérative d’économie familiale (ACEF)
1967 CJC was faced with major problems such as: Financial problems Mounting number of volunteers Martin Beliveau became the Associate Director of the organization in Québec He declared independence of CJC from the rest of the CYC
“We therefore ask the people and the government of Quebec to fully accept us. Our Company is the CJC. We are entirely Quebecois and want to be accepted as such by the population of Quebec.” Martin Beliveau
Reorganization of CJC With financial difficulties, Beliveau decided to cut back on paid staff and turn them into ‘true’ volunteers In reaction to Beliveau’s act, CYC removed him from his position With a new director, CJC had undergone a complete reorganization
A CHIEVEMENT National Film Board of Canada’s Indian Film Crew (1968) In 1968, as part of the Challenge for Change program, the Indian Film Crew was established at the Board’s Montreal headquarters. The Indian Film Crew was jointly sponsored by the Company of Young Canadians and the Department of Indian Affairs.
R EFERENCES Burger, B. (2011). Company of Young Canadians. Retrieved from http://www.albertburger.com/company%20of%20young%2 0canadians.htm CBC. ca. (2012). On This Day- Oct. 11, 1969- CBC Archives. Retrieved from http://archives.cbc.ca/on_this_day/10/11/ Daly, M. (1970). The Revolution Game: The Short, Unhappy Life of the Company of Young Canadians. Toronto: New Press. Dickenson, C. A., & Campbell, W. J. (2008). Strange bedfellows: Youth activists, government sponsorship, and the company of young canadians (cyc), 1956-1970. European journals of American studies. Special Issue, 1-20.
R EFERENCES Draper, J. A., Carere, J. (1998). Selected Chronology of Adult Education in Canada. CJSAE/RCEEA, 12(2), 44-76. Mulvin, Dylan. (n.d.). Two Generations of the Company of Young Canadians. Retrieved from http://www.sfu.ca/dialog/undergrad/pdfs/0601- DylanMulvin.pdf Struthers Swanick, M.L. (1974). The Young Crusaders; the Company of Young Canadians: a bibliography. Monticello: Illinois.