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New Zealand Times, Volume XLIX, Issue 8249, 3 December 1887, Page 3, https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/NZTIM18871203.2.10

IMMORALITY IN THE CHINESE QUARTER.[1]

The Government were questioned by Mr Seddon yesterday as to immorality in the Chinese quarter in Wellington. Mr Seddon asked the Government, Whether they will cause inquiries to be made as to the truth or otherwise of the rumor that a large number of young girls are in the habit of frequenting for immoral purposes the Chinese quarters in Wellington and other large cities in the Colony? (2) Will the Government cause strict inquiry to be made into the sanitary condition of the Chinese quarters in Wellington, and the other large cities in the Colony? (3) Will the Government take precautionary measures to have strict supervision kept of all vessels arriving at the various ports in the Colony which have on board Chinese sailors or passengers, with a view of preventing evasion of the Chinese Immigrants Act, 1881? He had information of a reliable source, he said, to the effect that the statements on the question were correct. As to the second part, the information asked would be beneficial to the Colony. With respect to the third, he knew personally that when Chinese vessels arrived in Wellington the sailors were in the habit of coming into the town and walking around with their fellow countrymen as they chose, without any supervision, and it was possible therefore that Chinese might come into the Colony without the necessary obligations being performed.

The Minister of Justice said this matter was brought under his notice some time ago by Dr Newman, and the Government had inquiries made into it at that time. From the information received then it appeared that the number of girls was not so large as the question would indicate. The police had no power to interfere in the matter unless the parents or guardians of the girls made a complaint. The second part of the question was for the municipal authorities to deal with, but he would cause the quarters to be inspected. As to the third part, every precaution was taken, but the supervision would, if possible, be made stricter.


  1. New Zealand Times, Volume XLIX, Issue 8249, 3 December 1887, Page 3, https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/NZTIM18871203.2.10

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